Sunday, April 25, 2010

chit (to know more) ananda (to be more happy)

I re wrote my last blog...So it is very similar but with some differences.

This weekend I took the first part of the Anusara immersion from Adam Ballenger, the owner of Kula studio. I learned so much. Its funny, I would say for the past 8 months I have been practicing Anusara yoga daily, reading about the principles, watching the John Friend teacher training DVDs and I actually thought that I was getting a grasp on this wonderfully full and amazing system of yoga. Then I took the immersion, I smile and I realize how little I know and how much there is to learn. I feel humbled and empowered to learn more, study more, and practice more. I know this past weekend was just a tiny taste of what Anusara has to offer…and I am salivating.

After taking the immersion, even though my body is so sore from many hours of practice and sitting, I am feeling such a strong pull to my matt, and wanting to practice all I have learned. Now I am very aware that I rely on hyper extending my knees (not doing shin loop) in most of my advanced poses, again so humbling. I love that this humbling experience doesn’t make me want to cry and hide under my bed sheets, but instead it is a motivation to keep me practicing.

It’s funny how I found Anusara after practicing and teaching more Iyengar vinyasa flow for many years. When I started doing Anusara I was always thinking “how can I take these wonderful principles of alignment and flow with them”. But now I enjoy holding in the asansa going over my new mantra…open to grace (foundation, inner body bright), muscular energy (hug muscles to bones, periphery to midline, periphery through core lines to focal point), inner spiral (expanding), outer spiral (narrowing), organic energy (shining out from focal point along core lines and out through periphery, expanding away from midline, and shining out through skin), loops (ankles back, tops of shins forward, top of thighs back, scoop tail bone, expand kidneys, shoulders back and behind heart, top of ears back), and shins in thighs out…

One of my favorite things I learned over this weekend was John Friends reasons for studying yoga. I think his reason has been the same as my intention for the past few years but I never was able to articulate it in such a simple way. The reason to practice and study yoga is to know more (chit) and to be happy (ananda).I love this it is so simple and so meaningful. I love how I can take this on any level, learning more about my body, my mind, my relationship with others, my relationship with myself, my inner energy…And from learning this knowledge I can be happier. Now I acknowledge that this isn’t always easy. Sometimes it is really really hard it requires a lot of tapas heat, discipline, and effort. I do believe with my whole heart, that the more I practice yoga, the more I study, the more I continue to learn about myself and spirit, learning that there is no separation between the two ( non-dual) the more happy I will become.

This is also the reason I meditate. It is my intention when I sit. From sitting whatever my practice may be, silence, mantra, visualization…I know that in my practice even if it is short it is helping me learn more, to discover the truth of who I really am, and that learning more is contributing toward my happiness. Now I see each day, each obstacle, every activity as an opportunity to learn more, to gain more chit so that I may experience more ananda, delight, bliss, and happiness.

I practice and study yoga and meditation so that I may know more and to be happy! I even chant this before my practice in the Anusara invocation “sadchitananda murtaye”.

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