Here’s what I’m most looking forward to at the 2016 Ashtanga Yoga Confluence

If you missed it, the schedule for March 2016 dropped on Tuesday. (Apparently, giving out “new” schedules isn’t a bad thing to do on Tuesdays!)

A few things caught my eye: Led with Richard Freeman, which I don’t think I’ve done yet. David Swenson and Tim Miller, together, talking about teaching the standing poses. There’s opportunity for some interesting dynamics there. But what most caught my attention was this one:

4:00-6:00 pm – Intermediate Series and the Nervous System taught by Eddie Stern (lecture/chanting)
The theory behind the postures of the Intermediate Series has fascinating correlates in modern scientific findings. Consciousness, according to Yoga, expresses itself through the functions of our physiology, including the nerves of the brain and nervous system, sense organs and subtle channels. Because of sensory overload, stress and poor living habits, our nervous system becomes taxed, and stress hormones and other chemicals flood certain areas of the brain and body, effectively preventing the nervous system from signaling properly and allowing for a clear perception of the world around us and our place in it. In this lecture, we’ll look at how the intermediate poses (and many primary ones), breathing and bandhas help remedy this.

Now, before you say it: No, it isn’t because it’s a lecture and chanting, which I’ll take to mean no asana. And, no, it isn’t because of my poor living habits. It’s that Intermediate, in the modified and muddied way I am trying to practice it, is what’s out there, just beyond my reach. (First Series is, too, but it is a familiar set of graspings.) Plus, there’s the whole comboing up with science.

And I know beg the question: What are you most looking forward to next year?

Posted by Steve

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Two Ashtangis write about their practice and their teachers.

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