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expand theme: growing our hearts in the face of disaster

heart quality: willingness

action: inner/outer spiral

purpose: chit

pinnacle: bound parsvkonasana/EPK prep

Honoured and excited to teach a more advanced class. It’s always great to come into Leena’s classes and work with her students because she has cultivated strong studentship. Easy to teach you because you and she have created such a strong foundation.

Because you are a more advanced class, I want to share with you the founding verse of Anusara as our theme today: Shaktinipata anusarena shisyo nugraham arhati Translation: By entering the current of Divine Shakti’s descent into the heart, the true disciple becomes capable of receiving Grace.

Divine Shakti = power

Descent into the heart = already happening

True disciple = openness, willingness

Capable of receiving Grace = recognizing the flow of the universe as grace, in all its myriad dark and difficult forms

Our work: enter the current that is already flowing into our hearts, willingness and openness to recognizing and dancing with grace of universe. This week we are faced with a difficult to reconcile event – earthquake in Japan. Hard to see how this can be “grace”. I feel helpless to even look at the newspaper because I know I will get emotional. I don’t know how to reconcile this kind of suffering. I’m not there yet in my understanding, in my experience. So what I want to offer is the opportunity to try this out. To test, to stretch into this idea that if we align with the flow that is mainlining into our hearts, if we have the willingness to look, to explore, then we will receive the grace, we will recognize it.

The closest thing that I can see as grace is that, when I open myself to difficult information about the world, I have an opportunity to grow my heart. It trembles, it shakes, it hurts, it threatens to close. But if I am aware of it, if I stay close to my practice, to my purpose, then it grows.

Centreing: Open to flow, current of breath. Always already there, waiting to be noticed. The breath flows into us, a current of power, of Shakti. Enter the current of your breath. Everything changes when we do this. Enter the current of your breath and watch your mindbody respond.

Sequence

Downward dog

DD>fire hydrant>utt>tadasana

SN – SLL>parsvatonasana>half moon
SN – hip opener>triangle (top arm forward)>parsvakonasana
SN – full stretch > gentle twist > mod vasi (foot in front)

SN – silver surfer > parsvatonasana > half moon

Parsvakonasana>airplane

Parsvakonasana with bind    *strap if needed

Child’s pose with active arms

Bakasana

EPK prep

pigeon *with thigh stretch if wanted
janu sir * back leg in virasana, reach under grab ankle
marichyasana * with strap

SBK – SAVASANA

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theme: Om Namah Shivaya Gurave – first line of the invocation. Translate Namah “to bow”, Shivaya – Shiva, name for the ground of being, the all, the auspicious everything, Gurave – Guru, darkness and light. In Anusara the teacher is not something outside of you, but the wisdom within you and the experiences around us that we learn from. It is whatever guides us to move from the darkness to the light. You are your own best teacher. Today we are going to explore self-honouring, paying reverence to the wisdom of our own hearts. So when we come to difficult choices or challenges in our lives, we move from a deeper sense of trust in our own wisdom, our own inner teacher.

HQ: self-honouring

Action: Inner Spiral/Outer Spiral

Categories of poses: hip openers and forward bends

apex pose: pigeon prep with thigh stretch

context statements: word “honour” has two meanings – to hold something in high esteem, with reverence. so that is the bowing to the self, to the teacher within – om namah shivaya gurave. “honour” also means to abide by -like to honour your word. so this is another way that we honour the self – once we are connected to our own wisdom, we abide by that truth, we live by our own truth.

SEQUENCE

Warmups

-spine rolls, front, two sides      (looking inwards, bowing to the teacher within)

-crescent moon

-cat/cow – one leg back, opposite hand/foot

SN – straight leg lunge, gentle twist

SN – anjaney prep> runners stretch, back knee down hip opener

Action

-Inner Spiral and Outer Spiral –> brings pelvis into balance, creates a container that can hold all of our self honouring

-practice in tadasana, uttanasana, downward dog

Meat and Potatoes

-parsvakonasana, prasarita pad

-warrior 2> triangle> half moon

SN – full stretch, pyramid pose

SN – anjaney prep with thigh stretch

-malasana> sit into navasana> navasana crunches

-setu bandha

-pigeon prep folding forward

-child’s pose

-pigeon prep on fingertips

Cool Down

-upavista kon

-viparita karani for 8 minutes

SAVASANA

leaves turn colour in the fall when it gets cold because the chlorophyll withdraws. the chlorophyll is what makes the leaves green. so that means the trees are always beautiful reds and oranges and golds, we just can’t see them! ripening of the fall, fall reveals the true colour of the leaves. revelation, chit. this could make people happy about fall instead of depressed!

Theme: Expanding the present moment

HQ: Steadfastness and Expansiveness

Action: OTG, SITO

Pinnacle: Bound Parsvakonasana

Today the theme is “expanding the present moment”. This is something that I have been thinking about alot, something that is hard for me. To be present, not stuck worrying about the future or re-living or running from the past. I think this is a challenging thing for everyone. There can be a real agony about being in the present moment. But I’ve come across some definitions of the present moment that have helped me think about it differently.

The first definition is called “the fleeting present” and that’s the one I think we’re most familiar with. If time is a line, the fleeting present is a dot moving along that line, so everything before and after that is separate from it. That is the kind of present moment that I often think about when I try to be in the present moment. But that feels so isolated and cramped and tiny! So the second definition has really changed my thinking about the present. The second definition is called “the eternal present” and it is an expansion that includes all time. So the dot on the line expands to include both past and future. The power of the past and the potential on the future are all included in this moment, they are all acting on us all the time. So that feels really exciting and different to me, it doesn’t feel so isolated and tiny. Suddenly being in the present moment has this fullness to it.
And the expansiveness, the moving from being a dot on the line to becoming the whole line (or even more than that) is part of this process of awakening, of awareness. That is one of the highest purposes for our practice, to awaken, to expand our understanding of ourselves to a wider view.

Meditation/Centreing: Visualization – Imagine your past and future are contained in two separate bubbles floating over your head. As you sit here, lift your awareness up and prick holes in the bubbles. Feel the past and present begin to leak into and fill this present moment. What does that feel like?

  • warmups — cat/cow & hip circles
  • SN > straight leg lunge, gentle twist lunge > open dog
  • SN > crescent lunge > full stretch
  • ACTION- since we’re already tackling DEEP THOUGHTS about time, i thought i would tackle another age old question you’ve probably been wondering about, which is “what is the governing principle for the legs in any yoga pose?” I know this has been keeping you up at night, so I will answer that for you now: Shins In, Thighs Out
  • Tadasana – instruct SITO
  • Uttanasana – instruct SITO
  • DD – instruct SITO
  • 30 sec utkatasana – instruct SITO
  • SN – lunge with hand on outer shin
  • SN – elbow lunge > parsvotanasana
  • prasarita padottanasana (jump out)
  • parsvakonasana
  • eagle
  • pigeon prep
  • silver surfer > bound parsvakonasana
  • child’s pose
  • ardha matseyendrasana
  • upavista konasana (with partner, feet to shins, hug shins in, thighs out, fold forward)
  • janu sirsasana
  • savasana

http://www.yogaglo.com/online-class-336-by-Tara-Judelle-on-Anusara-in-Hip-Opener.html

Love this grounding class. Subtle awareness of organs bring us out of the thinking mind.

Tara’s cues I love:

– lean back into the support of the back lungs.

– jumping up to utt- soft heart before jumping so you center in heart focal pt

– tailbone anchors down like a rutter

– expansion of inner body out towards outer body

– dog- limbs move in opposite directions to make for great expansion of trunk.

-plank- back body magnetized to ceiling

– hip openers teach you process of taking on any intense experience and staying with your own inner peace. organs are peaceful.

– ME- intelligently organize muscles to shape the matrix of the skeleton

– being mind- when the thinking mind see’s a white wall, it is like 3 yr old saw a white who has a crayon- color all over it. the being mind can just see the white wall and let it be.

– pause, breath, harmonize

– in prasarita- pull feet in, feel inner thighs fire. pull feet out, feel outer thighs fire. pull feet back feel hams fire, pull feet forward, feel quad fire- this is ME on all four sides

– santosha= peace, natural state of being. yoga bringing us back to natural state.

– as you breath into the back of the lungs notice, how does that shift your experience?

– agnistombasana + twist= yum!

– not measuring against another but coaxing yourself into a deeper experience.

-how do we find being inside of ourself?

– really appreciate seeing people’s patience with their bodies. How we are with our bodies is an indicator for how we interface with everything else.

– set foundation cue- “organize feet’

– if our practice simply restores us to the ground of being… to that feeling of peace and wellness, it is a good practice. So to that grounding supportive energy please bow.

Sequence

  • dog pose
  • lunges
  • SN x 5 (just utt, plank, chat, cobra, dog, utt)
  • parsvok stance with hands down to inside- big IS
  • Triko> prasarita> triko
  • dog leg lift
  • warrior 2
  • road kill pigeon > x-pose
  • anjaneyasana
  • parvritta parsvo – twist originates in organs)
  • pigeon
  • thread the needle in pigeon
  • agnistombasana
  • paschimott
  • janu shirsh twist
  • pasch
  • hug knees in
  • savasana
  • meditation

Steadfastness on our path

–       HQ: Steadiness and freedom   Actions: ME/OE (HABB and SBOB)

Continuing my yoga training- some obstacles to getting into a training that I really want to be part of. First felt disappointment, uhh I should just do something else, but then I remembered how much I care about studying yoga and how I want to stay dedicated and true this path that I love.

In yogic philosophy the Ganesh, the elephant god, represents that aspect of consciousness that helps us to move through obstacles and blocks in our life. It’s significant that this aspect of consciousness is embodied as an elephant. If you think of the qualities of an elephant they are earthy, huge, live for a long, long time… qualities remind me steadfastness. And this quality is crucial in moving through obstacles, both in terms of life circumstances, but also obstacles in our inner relationship with our selves, with out spirit. So in our practice today we’re going do embody that quality steadfastness of Ganesh in order to move more deeply into our poses and subsequently also experience more freedom and expansiveness in the practice.

Meditation: Even breaths.

–       Warm ups: lunges and jump switching

–       Cactus arms (retract arms in, SBOB then expand)

–       Utkatasana with arms retract and then extended

–       Lunge twist

–       Utka> Prayer twist > step back > twisted lunge> holy hamstring stretch

–   Chatturanga push ups with blocks under shoulders (don’t touch block, keep HABB/SBOB)

–       Parsvo

–       Trikonasana- 1st- remember IBB lengthen, HOTBB (ME), extend (OE))

–       TRIK partner: hand on friends pelvis (root down) and crown of head (extend)

–       Shoulder opener

–       Pigeon prep

–       Setu bandha

–       Twist

–       Savasana

–       Chanting to ganesha

We don’t live with the way the world is, we live with the way we receive the world. -Dr. Douglas Brooks

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