from Kalama sutra, translation from the Pali by Bhikkhu Bodhi

This blog included. "So, as I said, Kalamas: 'Don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, "This contemplative is our teacher." When you know for yourselves that, "These qualities are unskillful; these qualities are blameworthy; these qualities are criticized by the wise; these qualities, when adopted & carried out, lead to harm & to suffering" — then you should abandon them.' Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

"Now, Kalamas, don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, 'This contemplative is our teacher.' When you know for yourselves that, 'These qualities are skillful; these qualities are blameless; these qualities are praised by the wise; these qualities, when adopted & carried out, lead to welfare & to happiness' — then you should enter & remain in them. Buddha - Kalama Sutta

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Eka pada Sirasana , Ramaswami approach.

So I'm still exploring Ramaswami's Vinyasa yoga. http://grimmly2007.blogspot.com/2009/06/book-review-complete-book-of-vinyasa.html Yesterday, my rest day, I did his light standing sequence and today I decided to sacrifice an Intermediate and have a go at his Asymmetrical seated sequence. I still haven't figured out how this method works. Do you tend to do one sequence a day, today seated tomorrow inverted etc. or do you do you sequence it yourself, taking a little from each, I suspect the later. Anyway I did a quick Ashtanga Standing and Finishing sandwiching the Ramaswami sequence. It took me about two hours altogether but there was a lot of stopping on the first side to refer to his book.

It was fun and without all the Jumping back much calmer, good focus on the breath and bandhas. Basically your working through every one legged seated asana, bit like an extended Ashtanga Primary seated sequence. It does make you look at Ashtanga in a new light, quite in awe of how Ashtanga was worked out, how each series became sequenced. However it makes you question some things too.
Kapo for instance seems well prepped but what about Eka pada Sirasana. I struggled with this when I first started in Intermediate (still do) and ended up chucking in some primary half lotus seated as extra preparation. In Ramaswami's Vinyasa yoga, Eka pada comes towards the end of the sequence about twenty asana's in. It follows Akarna danurasana (archer pose) and kraunchasana (heron pose) and a bunch of half lotus asanas and Marichi twists. I found it much easier getting in and felt much more comfortable staying there. Below is a video of a portion of the sequence leading up to Eka pada. I was doing this along with the book so some of the transitions and breathing sequence might be a bit out but you should be able to get the general idea.

videoLike I said it's interesting and worth exploring. I think I'll spend the next few Sundays doing a different sequence or two, some are shorter than others. Next week the Seated posterior stretch sequence, which includes, belly twists, pelvic floor poses,desk poses, leg and arm lifts, shoulder stands and even some circular ambulations (?). The poses in Ramaswami's sequences cover the full range of poses, from one star (beginner) to five stars (advanced). You would find asana from Primary to Fourth series Ashtanga. Today's Asymmetrical one legged seated, for instance, finished with Purna Matsyendrasana (kingfisher pose).

6 comments:

  1. Yeah, I see it: Akarna to take the knee well back and Krounchasana to take the hammies well long. One plus one.

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  2. I've considered buying this book a few times, but now, after reading this post, I've sent my order off to Amazon. Ought to be helpful for some education as I work out eka pada. Thanks!

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  3. hi Grimmly, hmm, this is a good idea for home practice. i may put that book on my Xmas self gift list. i do have MS's sequence book. i forget if you've tried that sequence.
    cheers,
    Arturo
    word verif merastra

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  4. Yeah, I want that book!

    Eka pada comes out of nowhere. I do it much more like Ramaswami if I sequence it myself (and don't you love akarna dhanurasana). Yet somehow it seems to work, the body just gets used to it. And in 3rd series I guess it's straight in after the suryas or maybe fundamentals, so clearly we have to learn to get there without prep!

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  5. Indeed, out of nowhere.
    I'm a bit torn here. The sequences of poses in Ramaswami's book do seem to make so much more sense, Eka pada S after 20 poses of building up to it and preparing you. But surely in this system you would be working on a different sequence each day, eka pada comes up twice, in the asymetric seated and in the one leg standing sequence, it might be a week before you get back around to it. In Ashtanga, however, you might not get all the prep but you will do eka pada everyday (if your doing 2nd).

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  6. I do have the MS Ainyasa Krama book, Arturo. I never reaaly looked at the sequences that closely, bought it for all the info at the beginning. I should look at it again in the light of Ramaswami's book. Too big and awkward though, no?

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