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Me, an Ashtangi? Guilty as charged

October 23, 2011

So, last night, as we were relaxing with our Certified Ashtanga Medicine, or CAM (aka a gin martini), Bobbie dropped this little mini-bomb on me.

“On the blog, you really come across as an Ashtangi.” Or words to that effect.

Point being: Other than a few early Iyengar classes, and then a good bunch of flow classes (which are like the rice cakes of working out), my yoga has been all Ashtanga, all the time. And that is the filter through which I see the Yoga world. (You can throw a little Bhakti in there, too, I guess.)

“It’s an Ashtanga blog,” I responded. And, while true, it isn’t as if we never mention other forms of yoga or other “yoga news.”

As an Ashtangi — or, I guess, a would-be Ashtangai (you’ll understand in March when you see my practice!) — I did see the Elephant Journal article on how Ashtanga is the most difficult practice.

And, like Claudia at AYME, I find it too silly to even link to; according to Claudia, though, it quickly became a “most read” at Elephant Journal.

Give me a second to let out an audible Ujjayi sigh. SIGH.

But Claudia did link to this post at Elephant Journal, which is worth a look. It’s just six quick questions with David Robson, a Level 2 authorized teacher. The first question gets right to the opening point of this post:

i. There are Yogis and then there are Ashtangis. Really?

David: Ashtangis are considered ‘extremists’ maybe, but extreme on the side of yoga. Ashtangis, by following the prescriptions of tradition, tend to be very committed to this practice. It can seem that when we say one thing works, we are saying another thing doesn’t, but that’s not the case. All yoga is yoga; Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is a particular path and it works, but that doesn’t necessarily mean any other path is any less effective.

It goes on wonderfully from there, including his view on a question that, at times for me, seems to loom like Mt. Shasta over my little city of McCloud: Should you go to Mysore?

From one Ashtangi to another, I say that piece is worth your time. Now, off to a late and led practice.

Posted by Steve

 

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