Sunday, April 18, 2010


When I go out on a Saturday night, I try not to stay out *too* late and I usually don’t drink. But last night there was Champagne, so what’s a girl to do?! Carpe Par-TAY, of course! I had a great time! Between the bubbly and the night of wild dancing, I was a bit worse for the wear this morning. I had managed to squeeze in about 5 hours of sleep before heading to the Shala. Fortunately, it was a led Primary this morning and started later, at 9 (unfortunately, I had a long, long day ahead of me with a workshop in the afternoon)

I had no idea what to expect from my practice, given my lack of sleep, but it was fine. In fact, I really enjoyed it. The Shala was less crowded than I expected, so we had space to spread out. I rolled every Chakrasana, but skipped the post Urdhva Dhanurasana roll. And my neck is a tiny bit sore. This is obviously a learning process for me. As I child, I never liked to turn somersaults very much!

Today’s led Primary felt easier than the one a couple of weeks ago. I think the room was cooler, which helped me keep a clearer head during the practice. I had better balance during Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana today, despite no assistance. Teacher P had to corral my Turtle, helped me bind in Supta K.

The discussion afterward was really interesting. A few days ago, I was trying to describe Astanga to a friend and I came up with the analogy of Martial Arts to convey the culture of daily practice and building a relationship with a teacher. I was surprised when Teacher R brought up this same analogy in the discussion. I think it’s very apt. I asked a question that had been nagging me about backbending and Kundalini and clearing space in the Sushumna. In retrospect, I think what I was *really* asking is this: “Why am I doing this?” To their credit, the teachers mainly addressed the heart of the question.

The discussion that emerged gave me some food for thought, mainly along the lines of trusting the process and trusting your teachers and just *doing* the practice. The idea of ‘beginners mind’ came up, being open to the practice and what it can teach us. I came home to a post Christine had written on Yoga Sutra 1.32. She observed: “At this point in my journey through the Yoga Sutras, I'm starting to wonder if the whole book couldn't be summed up by Pattabhi Jois when he said "Practice and all is coming." Patanjali's main theme thus far seems to be: Choose a practice. Keep practicing.”

It felt like my entire day has followed this theme: We keep practising and it’s the practice itself that becomes the POINT. Not the Kundalini or the emerging Siddhis (yogic super-powers) or the Yoga Butt or the Man Arms (*waves at Liz*) or the next pose in the series or Standing up from Urdhva Dhanurasana.

I spent my entire afternoon chewing on that very last item, because that’s what the workshop was about. I came home from the workshop absolutely FRIED and I’m still exhausted. My legs are like jello and I’m so exhausted, I feel numb.

Workshop report tomorrow. Now: bed.


Christine said...

so beautifully written! I love your reference to beginner's mind...I need frequent reminders of that!

Kaivalya said...

I forgotten to create a link to your blog in this post. I've done so now. Thanks for the inspiring words - they were serendipitous!