“Agni” – “Tejas”
Principle of – Transformation
Sense – Sight (Inner & Outer)
Characteristics – Hot, sharp, fiery, penetrating, clarifying, burning, luminous, radiant, transforming, conversion, transmutation, upward energy, warmth, gives light, activation, independent, confidence, desire, ambition, intensity, digestion and assimilation in the body, intelligence in mind and brightness in spirit.
Empowerments / Qualities – Aspiring, ambitious, optimistic, passionate, enthusiastic, energetic, strong self-esteem, power to rise up, courage to take a stand in ones truth, will power, power to break through, bravery/courage, power of goal setting, evolutionary force, galvanising, discerning, inspirational, focussed, motivated, calls to action, clear vision, laughter/humour, love of life.
Shadow Aspects – Aggression, frustration, arrogance, abrasive, hostility, burns out self and others, bully, domineering, blaming, egoistic, destructive, intolerant, impatient, self-righteous, condescending, overly competitive, uses power to manipulate, too ambitious to the detriment of self and others, fiercely independent without interdependence.
Emotion – Anger / Passion
Lesson – Let the fire transform what is not in alignment, burn bright with your vision for your life.
Patterns of Movement – Linear, straight lines, clear, penetrating.
Dosha – Pitta (fire + tiny splash water)
Refinement – Tejas (inner glow/radiance, natural intelligence)
Chakra – Manipura
Body Part – Navel, Abdomen, Solar Plexus
Finger – Thumb
Mudra – Agni Mudra (Fire Gesture)
“Set your life on fire, seek those who fan your flames.” Rumi
“In Sanskrit, fire is called Agni, a term that encompasses all matter in radiant form, including the sun, light, lightning, heat, magnetism and electricity. Fire has the quality of what is known in yogic terms as Rajas, or activity and passion; this is what gives form and colour to life.”
“A healthy fire element is key to maintaining physical wellbeing. All your body processes – from cellular metabolism onward – involve burning nutrients to create energy and generate heat. For example, if you keep your digestive fire burning at a steady pace, food will be properly digested, and you’ll be better nourished and hence better able to ward off disease.”
“Emotionally, having a well-balanced fire element empowers you to develop the courage to face life’s challenges and not be afraid of taking responsibility for their outcome. It assists you in developing such qualities as honour, integrity, courage, charisma, willpower, self-esteem and decisiveness. When your mind is ‘fired up’, you are better able to grasp ideas, understand what you have heard, nourish yourself with thoughts and be more in touch with your feelings.”
(Words from ‘Mudras for Modern Life’ by Swami Saradananda)
“The blazing fire makes flames and brightness out of everything thrown into it.” Marcus Aurelius
Ways To Connect To The Fire Element Through Yoga
(Avoid if pregnant, menstruating, have high blood pressure, before bed, already fired up – mentally, emotionally or physically.)
Breath Of Fire – “Agni Pran” (Quick breaths, emphasis both on inhale and exhale.)
Skull Shining Breath – “Kapalabhati” (Quick breaths, emphasis just on exhale, let inhales be passive/reflexive.)
Sun Piercing – “Surya Bhedana” (Left hand resting on thigh/knee in Surya mudra, alternate nostril breathing using right hand in Vishnu mudra – inhale through R. nostril, exhale L. Nostril, rpt.)
Lions Breath – “Simhasana” (Stick tongue out, stretch out face, gaze to tip of nose, release big exhale.)
Ocean Breath – “Ujjayi” (breathe in and out through nose, slight constriction back of throat, warming breath.)
- Light a candle have it burning during the practice.
- Set the intention to offer your negative qualities or something you want to release, transform or change, into the fire of transmutation, in the pit of your belly. Hold this intention throughout the practice visualising this alchemical process taking place.
- Visualise a fire in your solar plexus burning with a steady flame, not raging and out of control, nor dwindling and going out; imagine all you do in the practice is stoking and taming that inner flame and heat. See the warmth and luminosity radiating out of you; feel the glow from the inside out.
- Practice Vinyasa Power Flow.
- Warm up with Surya Namaskars – classic or creative variations.
- Keep the body moving through flow – avoid/reduce recovery time or long chilled out stretchy poses.
- Include dynamic/explosive/repetitive movements (Dolphin Pose push-ups, bunny ups, bridge pose with single-leg raises).
- Also, choose strong postures to hold (Warriors 1/2/3, Chair Pose, Crow Pose).
- Bring attention to the navel, abdomen and solar plexus and do specific core strengthening poses (Boat Pose, Jathara Parivartanasana, Lolasana).
- Play upbeat music to give you that extra motivation and lift when the practice gets challenging or your energy and focus dwindle.
- Move with power and focus, in a linear, clear, penetrating way, with clean straight lines – find full extension in the torso and limbs.
- When doing a Chakra focused class – work with the Manipura (Solar Plexus) Chakra.
- Close the practice with some gentle poses to avoid your body overheating.
- Take Savasana (Corpse pose), so your energy is restored, and you’re not leaving the practice feeling depleted, but instead awake, energised and ready to take on the day.
“What you want to ignite in others, must first burn within yourself.” Charlotte Bronte
Off The Mat
- Burn candles – at your desk when working, when having a bath, relaxing in your bedroom, or at the dinner table, let the outer flame you see be a reminder of your inner flame.
- Burn incense, sage, or palo santo.
- Soak in warm baths.
- Consume warm fluids.
- Eat warm temperature foods, and foods with certain ‘warming’ ingredients: dry spices (cayenne pepper, cinnamon, ginger), herbs (basil, coriander, rosemary), vegetables (some root vegetables, avocado, cabbage, onion, garlic), nuts (walnut, pine nut, chestnut.), fruits (mango, raspberry, nectarine, peach, dates.)
- Stay warm, dress appropriately, and after sweating, get clean and dry.
- Surround yourself with people who motivate, inspire, energise, uplift or humour you, and then feed others with such qualities.
- Spend time in the sun, even if it isn’t a clear sunny day, get outside in the daylight hours.
Watch the sunrise and sunset.
- Set goals, stay clear with your vision, believe in yourself and take action.
- Be mindful of your energy exertion, be sure not to burn the candle at both ends.
“Keep a little fire burning: however small, however hidden.” Cormac McCarthy
Feeling inspired by this Fire Element, check out the blog post…