Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Day 3 - "You take practice, you think God."

Same time, same place, same postures.  

Day 3 of my new and disciplined Ashtanga Hatha Yoga practice was awesome.  I brought my surfing beginner mind and less tired arms because I actually skipped surfing this morning.

I had woken up a few times in the night with strong soreness sensations in my arms and shoulders so I decided they could use a break and slept in.

I rolled out of my tent around 8am, did some housekeeping type stuff, ate a big plate of fresh fruit, and reviewed the handy-dandy primary series guide from Ashtanga Yoga Canada.

I looked at all the postures, reviewed the names, and looked more closely at the pictures of the ones that are new to me.

I've looked at that sheet about 25 times in the past 3 days but today for the first time I noticed the Sri K Pattabhi Jois quote,
"You take practice, you think God."
When I read the quote I realized that a beginner mind is perfect for thinking God. I also realized that while in my other yoga practices I often "think God" that so far in my Ashtanga dabbling I hadn't really.

For whatever reason, until today, my Ashtanga practice had me very focused on trying hard to do the postures correctly and in the right order.  In some ways that might be thinking God, but the quote helped me see that my mind could be bigger than it had been in past practices.

So I started my practice with the intention of holding an open beginner mind focused on counting breaths as I fully embodied each posture.  It was heavenly and I even though my mind definitely wandered about in many postures, I still definitely thought more God in this practice than I have been.

I ended up practicing for over 2 1/2 hours and still didn't make it quiet all the way through the series.  I made good progress on it though and spent a lot of time focused on strengthening and preparing for jump throughs. I also got further in Kurmasana than yesterday, and did some great prep stretches for the Supta version.

Today I messed up the order of the Utthita Hasta Padagustasana and the Virabhadrasana poses. I also forgot Navasana (no really I totally forgot because I was so worked up about Kurmasana) and I also messed up order of the closing series.

Thankfully I'll have another chance to get it right tomorrow, and the day after, and the day after that.....

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