Saturday, 8 October 2016
Ashtanga is the healing medicine for our body, no variation allowed!
And of course the shala was fully packed. I practiced with other 7 students in the hall and it was fine. At the beginning there was an Indian woman with all makeup who was sitting back on the bench which was 50 cms from our mats, then after Parshvakonasana she understood that she was not at the right place, basically she was bothering us, and finally she left.
Today the class was filmed. At one point during Urdhva Mukha Shvanasana we had the camera right below our nose, don't know the purpose of it, during Sarawasti class the same happened. So at least I will be on of their movie if they released it ;-) wow, am I getting famous?? not at all! just kidding.
After the practice there was a conference with Sharat, he spoke about the fact that Yoga is not from a book, not in a book and not in a manual, yoga is inside of us and only by practicing we can explain what it is and experiment it.
Asana is the door to Yoga, because through Asanas we start understand how to breath then the Pranayama comes.
I asked a question about limitation and variation. If we can not do an asana because of a physical limitation due to a surgery are we allowed to do the variation?
The answer is of course no. As per Sharat Ashtanga is healing the body that is why we should stop when we are not mastering an asana, the body takes time to record it and to understand it. The pain is part of the process.
I don't know if it is right or no, I can only take my personal experience. Last June and July both of my knees were screaming, at one point even Janu Shirshasana was painful. I then stop to practice for 3 weeks the primary series and focus on something else (for instance I was working teaching Hatha Yoga), then I have to admit that since I am back to the Ashtanga Practice bot of my knees are totally okay even though I still do not have any meniscus in my left knee. It is not painful at all and I can manage to do the Parshvakonasana B without any variation.
So can I say that Ashtanga has healed my body by opening my hips more or will it be the fact that I took a break from the Primary Series and practiced more Hatha? I have no clue, in both way the asana has healed my body but from which practice I don't know.
He underligned also the fact that we are NOT YOGIS OR YOGINIS because the foot goes behind the head, that WE ARE NOT SUPPOSED to have flat back in Janu Shirshasana for example as we are loosing the essence of the asana which is to give internal massage to the internal organs and that NO ONE IS ADVANCED PRACTICTIONER because of the jump back and jump front.
Actually the hand stand before jumping back and jumping front is worthless because it is not good for the shoulders.
I can not agree more with it. He also mentioned (and I really like it) "Come in the shala as a student, do not come to show off. Yes you can jump back and jump front but you are not a Yogi because of it, you are a student".
Finally is spoke about the dress code. Last time I was saying to Rakesh and Trupta that I am one of the student who is wearing more clothes!!! Most of the ladies are in short and tiny top and some men are just in bathing suit.
Sharat said it was disrespectful for the practice, for the shala and for the country. He said "as a student you are wearing this kind of clothes and you go out people can see that you are almost naked which is bad for my reputation and the shala".
Once again I can not agree more. Beside adjusting someone when there is not cloth is not convenient at all as sometimes you have access to part of the body that you would definitely rather avoiding.
It was a nice talk from him. Tomorrow is the day off and my body is thankful for it!
- Namaste -