Yoga Retreat
Mother As First Guru ( By Swami Gurupremananda Saraswati
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insurance. This has been due to 3 commonly acknowledged factors:
• A higher number of “difficult” labours requiring emergency caesareans
• A higher number of labours classified as “high risk”, leading to increased caution on the part of doctors, and often resulting in a “prescribed caesarean”
• The trend towards elective caesarean births.

   However, the root causes of these reasons is not so widely considered or acknowledged. In the first instance, it can be easily concluded that an increase in emergency caesareans has arisen from:
• A general increase in more and more women’s inability to have natural, intervention-free vaginal births, and this in turn is caused by the worsening reproductive health of women in our culture.
• Many women have false expectations and unpreparedness for what childbirth actually entails due to the popular downplaying of childbirth difficulties and potential complications. So many do not realise it requires a certain level of fitness and preparation, and that modern life is very much in opposition to the evolutionary needs of the female reproductive system. Many lack confidence in their own abilities as birthers and figure that technology will rescue them from any worst case scenario.
• Many emergency caesareans are the end result of what is called dystocia, that is “a labour failing to proceed”. Sometimes this may be caused by innate physiological dysfunction, sometimes it may be the result of deep psychological blockages, and also it can be caused


by the many interventions to which the labour was previously subjected.
   Whereas the eventual need for an emergency caesarean in life threatening situations is usually unarguable, in the second category, the definition of what constitutes a potential childbirth difficulty requiring a “prescribed caesarean” is a very spongy area. For example, many doctors take it as a given, that you cannot have a vaginal birth following a previous caesarean, even against the statistics showing that this is not an unsafe risk and the evidence of many women who have successfully done so(26). Many doctors consider a breech presentation to be an automatic reason for caesarean delivery, also against the evidence that midwife-assisted breech births are no less safe than any other(27).
   Another significant cause of medical conserva-tism in childbirth which often leads to a decision to perform a caesarean, is the increasing litigation for “unsatisfactory births”, where doctors and hospitals are increasingly being sued for anything occurring in the pelvic regions which the parents consider should have been done differently. Certain kinds of couples who expect medicine to deliver an easy and perfect birthing outcome will create a fuss if or when it doesn’t happen. To avoid such outcomes, it is quite clear there is a growing mentality of “when in doubt, cut it out”.
   Which brings us to the last reason – the extraordinary trend of some women to choose an elective caesarean. Quite frankly, I think it should be outlawed. Even making such people pay the whole cost of their operation, now somewhere between $5,000 and $10,000, would be no real solution to this madness.

~ Birthing Naturally ~

~ What is Natural Birthing? ~

   So what is this so-called “natural” birthing? How is it defined and where does it differ from so-called “normal” birthing or what is insinuated as being “unnatural” birthing?
   Of course, within the natural birthing move-ment, there are differing opinions as to what exactly constitutes a natural birth. There are those who advocate a very simplistic, animalistic kind of childbirth, in which the woman gives birth in her own nest (home), unassisted by any kind of medical professional or 


intervention technique.She may give birth alone or supported by just a few lay people of her choice. This is normally called unassisted homebirth but has also been coined “freebirth” by Jeannine Parvati Baker.
   Then there are those who hold to a definition in which medical interventions, procedures, drugs and monitoring are all kept to a minimum. This kind of natural birth may (theoretically) occur in a labour ward, a Birth Centre or at home with a midwife.
   Since my own birthing experience has been of many styles ranging from the full-on hospital disaster to several unassisted freebirths, along with what I have learned from my yoga training I have discovered

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Please Note:
The complete ‘Mother As First Guru’ Set also contains Book 2 + 2 audio cds. Book 2 relating to comprehensive Yoga Practices as well as the Audio Instructional practices (2 cd set) are only available with your purchase and is NOT available on the Reading Room.

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