Freedom through Yoga
“The Highest Nobility lies in taming your own mind” — Atisha
We are now entering the New Year of The Snake in the Chinese Horoscope. The times leading up to this period have been auspicious and exciting with the waking of the new energies entering our planet and ourselves via the Winter Solstice 2012, the entering of the Aquarian Age and now the year of the Snake. Aside from these calendar scenarios into our everyday milieu, we are open each day to this Light through our awareness and intent.
Yoga practice with intent and mindfulness on the mat is extremely powerful with opening the physical and energetic pathways of the body. We can also practice our yoga off of the mat by having awareness in everything we do, act and say.
Of course this might sound quite obvious but lately I have noticed a new student way of thinking. A yoga student who wants more and more… move and move and they do not even realize they are out of alignment or they are not ready in their nervous system for the inversions or the deeper backbends. They may feel ‘bored’ by their practice, yet they are not being realistic about their body abilities. So these students will want to either go faster and have many more reps; or they want to add all kinds of tools and valorous ways to their practice to make it exciting, like weights and mojo dance moves and circus extravagance. That is lovely. I have no problems with anyone adding anything to their practice to make it fun (and hopefully safe). However, it is a system that has been created thousands of years ago with medicinal postures to heal and open the body. We are modern yogis and change is important but I also feel that if you move too far away from this sacred tool then you have lost what this gift is about. Perhaps that is not your care or focus, then ce la vie.
But if your intention is to open the body and release the blocked energy, and to move the spine in all directions through the postures and the breathing so that you create a powerful strength from the inside out– then you have to be disciplined and practice. Discipline as in training ones body, preparing ones self and space. Everyday yoga for twenty minutes of postures and breathing, ninety minutes of a deeper practice, or even watching the breath for ten minutes twice a day. A practice that is personal and fits into your schedule is the most important.
I began practicing yoga in the 90’s with Iyengar and Ashtanga yoga respectively. I felt it very important, that as I deepened my practice and understanding of yoga to investigate the Krishnamacharya lineage and to stay on this path. I studied with many amazing teachers — with Dona Holleman bringing it all together with intelligence, alignment, power, strength, flow, grace, discipline, and awareness. The most poignent of her teachings for me was to not force your body into the posture but to have the posture integrate into your body through the vital principles techniques. This can happen with proper sequencing so that the postures unfold in a safe and elegant way.
When we practice the postures in a particular way with the breath and the alignment of the energy centers- then there is a lightness in the body so that we move from this graceful place and not with overt muscular force. Over time, the spine energy can unwind and become free. “The asanas simply stretch the body and whenever the body is stretched the fluids can flow easier. The fluids of the blood, the nervous energy, the electricity in the body, everything can flow more easily because your are stretching the body.”
This Freedom through Yoga, this Kundalini awakening is real. It is not a fairytale… although as you feel this rhythm into your everyday life… Your life will seem like a fairytale. Because now you have uncovered “the veil” that is been in the way of you connecting with source in a more powerful true way. Now you are more open to the cosmos energy, the subconscious, the old brain–step by step… little by little; until ahhh the zen happy feeling is there. True it comes and goes but it becomes easier to connect with as we become more open with the practice and get into the present moment. Even though we are in the present, often we have to get there. They say you can not force it because it is doing without doing: wu-wei-wu.
The gift of taming the conscious ego mind and delving into the magical world of the subconscious is for the brave-hearted. This is a place where battles and dances of the unicorns take place to move you through all of your powerful imprints placed on you since birth …. and once you have one by one conquered these seeds and replaced them with seeds of Light, your passions and “right beliefs” to increase the positive receptors in your body brain– then you can become free. It just takes awareness in the present with intention each time; and if you can practice in nature all the better.
In Peace and Harmony,
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