So- a few days of R&R mostly. Wednesday I had the opportunity to go to Matt's Ashtanga class at 6pm before subbing for Kim S. at 7:30. That was a fun little yoga extravaganza. I got to practice next to Terry which was fun. I really do enjoy the ashtanga vinyasa practice a lot these days. It is a lovely way to move and to go inward and just return to something very elemental about the asana practice.
After that I taught for Kim where I lead a somewhat basic yet sweaty flow class. I made a joke that I was present in my alter ego as a flow teacher that night. There are so many ways to teach vinyasa but lately I have really enjoyed keeping the flows simple and moving with shorter holds and having some nice tunes playing to keep the group energy up. It wouldn't pass a certification video assessment even though I use a theme, I use the UPA's, I have great language skills and I make verbal and physical adjustments and so forth. So technically it qualifies but it is not by the book, I suppose. For me though, its fun to step out of "modeling perfect Anusara Yoga teaching methods" and just model being an Anusara Yoga teacher who is having fun being out of the box a bit. More on that another time.
Today I spent some time with Mom and Dad and then Anne and I did a great hip opening practice at my house before I went to South Studio for Craig's lecture. It was an inspiring talk, as usual. This was the last in a series on Yoga and Ayurveda and Psychology. The series has been full of tidbits of info about how yoga addresses psychology and how Ayurveda addresses it and how these sister sciences can be utilized to help us align with ourselves, with nature and with the Divine Flow in very practical and immediate ways.
I have only been able to make it to a few sessions of this course but what I have really enjoyed is how Craig has made clear distinctions in his presentations between what is in the domain of yoga and what is in the domain of Ayurveda. It is clear to me that many things that we say are yoga are more traditionally classified under the umbrella of Ayurveda. Like really, Ayurveda is for our bodies and minds and yoga is about consciousness and about accessing the deepest regions of who we are; the soul, so to speak. In asana classes we focus a lot on things for the body and call them "yoga" when really, that might be more technically Ayurveda. Anyway.
Tonight Craig talked about faith, ritual and devotion and how these three aspects must be combined in our lives in order to cultivate prana and to facilitate healing on any level. There were many nuggets of inspiration throughout the talk and somehow Craig's talks always put me in touch with my love for practice and my passion for the teachings of yoga. Really, I think he could talk about anything and I would feel inspired to continue along this path with more focus and dedication. I think part of it is just his conviction in its importance and his own dedication to the teachings.
I think that is the lesson of good company. Most spiritual traditions address this issue and remind us that we are, in many ways, the company we keep. For me, it is much easier to be steadfast in my practices and anchored in my faith when I am around people who are dedicated to the same principles in their lives. It creates such a positive momentum. Of course, hang out with a group of people who are solidly dedicated to the principles of what I call The Sleeping World and that can be inspiration for practice as well, if you do not get lulled to sleep yourself. I mean really, for how long is news, weather, sports, celebrity gossip and so on that interesting?
Speaking of sleep, it is time to prepare for some.
Just a reminder that we are having a group practice at The Love Yoga Coop (aka The Love Shack) on Saturday from 2:00-5:00. I think in a previous posting I wrote 2:30 but it is 2:00 so spread the word! Please come and join the gang for the practice. Come ready to work and play. Modifications and advanced variations will be offered so all levels are welcome so long as you know and honor your limits.
Also tomorrow night is Sanieh's Trance Dance. I am going and it promises to be a rollicking good time to, as she once told me, "let your crazy out of the bag!"