It's spring I tell ya,
....first drop of sweat on the mat this morning, there it was at the end of standing, was so excited that I stopped to take a photo.
It might have happened earlier or been a towel full by now if not for the new approach to breathing I'm taking (Simon Borg-Olivier's abdominal approach) which seems to be cutting down on sweating generally, we'll see as the humidity creeps up to 100% in this old, Air conditioner free house in Osaka, Japan.
You might prefer this image of spring
This is Sakuranomiya, cherry trees all down the river and pretty much the view from my train into work each day. It's one stop from work and I'm off there after this post, a walk along the river for an hour or so before work.
So with the warmer weather an opportunity to consider the state of play as far as practice is concerned.
Winter has taken it's toll, the last year actually, winter was just an excuse for minimal practice. Less asana shouldn't justify a lack of commitment and engagement with those asana one does practice, I have to admit, I've let things slip.
Did come up from dropback without tapping off the wall today that was a first for a while, kapo was, well... far from the blog header picture but I'll take it and am surprised it's not worse considering how little I practice 2nd. A little concerned at how far my legs sink back but kapo's gone and come back again before, I'm optimistic, be nice to get the heels back such that I can settle in again and breathe.
One of my favourite people in Ashtanga might be pleased to hear that my Supta Kurmasana has taken a leave of absence, again rarely practiced but I was surprised to lose it altogether, did my body just get old while I was taking it easy?
Garbha pindasana? will wait and see until it's warmer to see if that's still happening, haven't practiced it since August last year in Rethymno. Will I sweat at all with this approach to breathing 100% humidity, probably.
What else have I lost,...Marichi D still binds remarkably but only just. Others that I do practice regularly are a pleasure, Maha Mudra/Janu Sirsasana, Baddha konasana etc... karandavasana goes down but certainly not up but that was hit and miss back in Rethymno. Hasta padangustasana is enjoyable recently with the abdominal breathing...
Oh you know, asana, it is what it is. Still, Spring resolve is to be a little more committed to the asana, the form, the container and not just the breath within, one reflects upon the other.
Need to be more Stoical in my practice and in life in general
|Been loving Epictetus in my ipad Stoic bible so much that I splashed out, wonderful stuff|
Pranayama was a surprise, Ive been including six rounds before and six rounds after practice, Sribhashyam's ( Krishnamacharya's son) approach, which was fine but when I attempted the longer practice I was used to from Ramaswami and Vinyasa Krama this morning, I found it quite an effort.
The extra weight I'm carrying doesn't help perhaps, more lack of discipline this year that I really can't excuse by blaming it on a mild depression brought on by the years disruption or the subtle grieving that comes with parting from those one loves.
I chose this, Epictetus, Seneca and Marcus would shake their heads I'm sure.
Still. the funk (and it's appetite) seems to be passing, sweat, cherry blossom, fine writing and ideas cheering me as well as realising this morning that I'd missed three new interviews on Lu's Ashtanga Parampara and had them to look forward to.
Read the first of the three before practice, Krista Shirley who I seem to remember had a cybershala blog a while back. Here's my FB intro to the link because I want to rush out and see some trees
A courageous post here from Krista Shirley with an intro that must have been hard to write. And it turns out she went to Rollins in Orlando, my ex ( and one of my oldest, dearest friends) went there and I spent a lot of time visiting following cheap BA flights from my Dad. Here's Ashtanga then as an effective tool for growth and assist for healing, there's a particularly nice bit on meditation before practice ( and also a mention of home practice). Now to the mat or the other two interviews....
"I strongly believe in meditation. It has always helped me maintain balance and motivation in my practice. If you don’t already have a sitting practice, try to start with just a few minutes each day before you take practice. Sit somewhere you are comfortable and pick a word or image and focus on that for five minutes. Set an alarm on your phone when you are starting out. Even if you don’t like sitting, especially at first, this will help you better set your intention for asana, and help you regain that accountability for it as well. I think some of us sometimes allow our lives into our practice in the mental sense; we rush there and rush through asana because we might lose that sacred distinction between ‘you time’ and the rest of the day. When they blur we might feel like we don’t have time for this yoga stuff because we have too many other things we must do. Then it becomes a chore, another thing we must cross off the list….and then its no longer a treat, a reprieve from life, but just another burden. Meditation even a few minutes a day will help re-define your ‘you time’ and WHY you need it and deserve it".