A reminder of the power of asana

We have had a couple handfuls of people this weekend mention and thank us for doing the blog.

As we have said to them, that is much appreciated. Such thanks are the tangible reward for the work. (No, i am not fishing for compliments.)

What has been especially gratifying is the appreciation shown for our outward focus — people mentioned they learned about this weekend at Ashtanga Yoga New York or about Tim Miller’s Tulum week via us.

That pretty much was and is the point: to be a resource for Ashtanga things that, in our opinion, deserve more notice or sharing. (Chances are if we haven’t passed something on you saw it is because we figured it had a great enough broadcast system already.)

But the blog, as blogs are want to do, also serves a bit as a record of our thinking (and often yours) about the practice.

This is one of those posts.

Coming to town, I made a point of saying that the weekend isn’t about asana. It is about the satsang (which we will get to) and seeing both Robert Moses and Eddie, plus some other friends.

The third day of practice, though, under Eddie’s watchful gaze served as a reminder of the power of Ashtanga’s asana system. While right now I am feeling the physical implications, it is the inward burning of the tapas — in abundance here — that really is churning.

But that comes via all the physicality. And it has been a while — more than a year — since we have practiced three days in a row under one teacher’s eyes.

And so perhaps I had forgotten the implications of the building nature of being adjusted in the same pose consistently. (It goes without saying this needs to be expert adjusting, right?) Why is Eddie on my Tirianga …. (you know what I mean, but I’m on a iPad so can’t confirm the spelling)? Well, because it exposes all my stiffness. But each day the adjustment has built upon the previous one. A little more here, a little different there.

Ah! Some progress? Maybe after a few months or years.

But the inward progress can be more immediate, even if more fleeting. For now, the insides are molten and ready to be shaped by the afternoon talks.

So I have to reassess my maybe too strong dismissal of asana earlier, having been reminded (as my hips will tell you) of where it fits among the eight limbs. (Although I stand by saying there may be a bit too much emphasis on asana lately.)

Everything is connected, after all.

Posted by Steve

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Two Ashtangis write about their practice and their teachers.

2 thoughts on “A reminder of the power of asana”

  1. I enjoy reading all of your posts (and Bobbies)….. I think what I love most about asanas after practicing for a while – is how they each inform the other & how this permeates my life off the mat…. I’ve begun intermediate & I’m constantly having aha moments about the very first postures I practiced… It gives a richness to it all… And my mind now reminds me to breath & that is how I got through it the first time…. I’m not reacting so much…. I too sometimes feel overwhelmed by all the asana videos/posts… And yet at other times they serve my practice well… Thank you. Tracy.

  2. I look forward to reading about your findings!!! As a new Ashtangi, my teacher’s focus is all about the asanas! Practice! Practice! Practice! But just as you said, “everything is connected” I saw this quote by David Williams, “Before you’ve practiced, the theory is useless. After you’ve practice, the theory is obvious.” Thank you for your insights!

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