Don't force the body
Focus on healing
Listen to the body
- This style of yoga is not
about making the body conform to the posture. It is about discovering how
your body experiences the posture. Staying with a posture long enough to
fully experience the sensations could open a new level of awareness. This
truly is the opportunity and the challenge of yoga
- Each posture changes our
relationship to gravity. Each posture allows relaxation to open the body
in a slightly different way. Each shift loosens, a little more, the
inflexibility which limits our movements.
- It is more important how
the posture feels then what it looks like.
- We want to find the
place, in each pose, where we can relax and breath into the pose.
- When we push we create
resistance. We already have enough resistance in our lives. Resistance is
painful, futile and debilitating.
- Opening comes through
- Each posture enables us
to focus our breath into a particular area of the body. The breath can
enter areas that the stretch can not. The breath sets us free.
- Our intention is to
liberate and reclaim our body which is now possessed by stress.
- Surrender is not giving
up but rather letting go of our resistance to our own freedom and
magnificence. Surrender is discovering our self. The self that resides
beyond limitations and boundaries.
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- Sometimes we move very
slowly. So slowly that it seems irritating. That irritation is what is
being released from our body by that slow movement. Similarly, postures we
hold a long time can also be challenging because they also allow us to
feel what is locked in our body. To be still long enough to feel can seem
irritating or scary. It is the avoidance of feeling which keeps many of us
in constant motion. What ever comes up, as we do yoga, is on its way out.
Let it go. There is nothing that can come up, that we can't handle.
- While our main
on the healing end of the yoga spectrum rather than the fitness end of the
spectrum, we do place a large emphases on strength, alignment and posture.
- Yoga only works when you
do it. Consistent practice works best.
- Armoring is the process
of strengthening or guarding ourselves against the world. We do it
physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. All aspects of
ourselves are interconnected. As we armor physically we are also mentally,
emotionally and spiritually affected. Many 'fitness' exercises create or
compound our armoring. Many schools ( but no all) of Hatha yoga break down
this armoring, moving us toward freedom. At times, as a layer of armoring
melts away, we may feel weak or vulnerable for a time. Sometimes this
feeling lasts for a while but in time a new strength comes forward from
within. It is a much more powerful strength flowing from the core of our
being, changing us. As we progress the time spent with feelings of
vulnerability shortens. It is appropriate during this time to discuss
these feelings with a yogi or yogini, perhaps your instructor.
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- Listen to your body. When
your body says "I've done enough." Come out of the pose. Don't wait to be
told it's okay. If you are experiencing a good release and want to stay
with the pose as the rest of the class moves on, stay with the pose until
you are ready to move out of it.
- If you release something
and begin to cry stay with it. Feel free to role on your side and stay
there and enjoy your cry. I always have tissues.
- It is not unusual for it
to take several months or more to slow down enough to begin to feel the
depth of relaxation which is possible. It is at a deep level of relaxation
where healing occurs.
- If moving slowly with
focus seems difficult; you are not alone. You could be feeling the
irritation, which is stored in the muscles, as that irritation is
released. Any e-motion stored in the muscles can be released. When this
happens know it is on its way out. This is one way we experience our
stress leaving our body. It could also be an opportunity to ask ourselves
what we are attempting to avoid knowing about ourselves by always moving
quickly. Slow intentional movement through the postures brings
consciousness into our body and into our lives. It is not necessary to
beat ourselves up to become strong.
- Becoming more conscious
can be fun. It is empowering.
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