Namasté. In Sanskrit, it means “I bow to you.” In Nepalese, it’s used to show respect for elders and those in a higher station, and in Sikh scripture it’s referenced as a salutation to the one God. The more common definition, and the one associated with yoga is, “The divine in me recognizes the divine in you and acknowledges we are the same."
So what does all this have to do with wine, you ask? I was wondering the same thing myself during my recent Ananda yoga practice as my mind kept wandering to my blog, wine reviews and how and what I was going to write about yet another winery. Thankfully my instructor called my attention and awareness back to the present and back to my body, by asking us to take a moment and recognize any changes we may feel from when we began and to embrace those changes. As I opened my eyes and turned to look at her, she told the class those benefits are ours to take with us, then bowed her head and said, “Namasté."
Feeling all the wonderful healing benefits of my practice, I said “Namasté” in response when this idea about Vino Therapy popped into my mind with the same intensity as a champagne cork comes out of its bottle. Personally, yoga is more than just exercise, it’s like rehab for my mind, body and spirit—integrating and harmonizing the physical, mental and spiritual states of my being, making them all feel better. In my opinion, wine has very similar therapeutic effects. If I feel particularly agitated, wine can completely calm my mind or and it’s also been known to stimulate powerful spurts of creativity. Wine has many scientifically recognized and welcome benefits to the body, reducing the risk of heart disease, fighting certain cancers and slowing the progression of neurological degenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease (not to mention how it benefits your sex life, your meal or the economy). The effects on my spirit are endless, if I’ve had a bad day, a glass or two is a sure-fire cure, but above and beyond that, wine inspires passion, gives me drive and just plain brings me pleasure. Ananda literally means bliss, or one’s highest inner happiness. Ananda vino?
When I look at my glass of wine, I can genuinely say “Namaste” recognizing the light, beauty and divine within… the benefits for body, mind and soul. Can you? If so, those benefits are yours to take with you today and for the rest of your days. Namasté and until we sip again…