There are hundreds of different types of yoga nidra. There is almost no limit to the variety that a teacher can bring into his or her lessons. Specific types can be given to remove diseases, others to remove dullness. Some can even be taught specifically to induce deep sleep; this is an example we have given in technique 5 in Part 3. The practice should be chosen according to the discretion and intuition of the teacher.
The stage of visualization gives the greatest scope for variety. The following are a few examples:
Stories can cover a vast number of different scenes; the only limitation is your power of imagination. You can describe stories set in jungles, mountains, far-off countries; you can even give fairy stories and descriptions of interplanetary travel. Use your imagination.
Objects for visualization are also limitless. You can utilize any object, but try to choose them by the faculty of intuition.
Aura visualizations are also useful. The aim is to visualize the pranic body and perhaps the golden cord emanating from the navel. This is a more difficult practice and should be done only by advanced practitioners. It can be practised in conjunction with prana vidya (knowledge of prana).
Time travel is an excellent practice in which one tries to retrace one’s life into the past. You have to retrospect step by step, being aware of feelings and experiences that arise. The time travel can be through the same day’s events, back to a previous year, to one’s childhood, to one’s birth and perhaps even further. This practice requires deep relaxation and a competent teacher. It is a good method of removing childhood traumas etc. and releasing pent-up suppressions.
Music can also be integrated into yoga nidra, especially in conjunction with rotation of awareness through the chakras. This practice cannot be taught in a book. If you are interested in learning it then we suggest that you contact a musically-minded teacher.
There are many more distinctive types of yoga nidra. In the previous three lessons and also in this lesson we have described six different techniques. These cover a wide range of possibilities which can be used as guidelines to help you map out your own practices. It is best, however, to contact an experienced teacher for personal and direct guidance.