Such a nice pace to it, sweat free, breathing smooth, steady throughout, thought I could practise like this all day....
so why not, tomorrow perhaps.
Came across this great web page called Time and Date.com, love the little moving sun graphic,
And if the moon is your thing...
The site, now my homepage, has the sun rise and set times I so thought I'll get up for Sury's at 5:03 tomorrow morning and practice until sunset at 18.47, keep the same pace as today (around 8-10 seconds each inhalation and exhalation) should be able to cover many of the Vinyasa Krama formal sequences with a rough Ashtanga framework broken up buy pranayama, pratyahara, meditation. Be good to revisit some of the Vinyasa Krama subroutines I haven't practiced for awhile.
Off the top of my head I'm thinking something like this.
First session Vinyasa Krama
4.00 AM 48 min Sit
5.03 Sury with mantra
Full Tadasana ( Vinyasa krama)
6.00 Bow and Meditative sequence (pretty much corresponds to first half of Ashtanga 2nd)
9.00 48 min Sit
Second Session Slow Ashtanga
10.00 Krishnamacharya Surnamaskara asana
11:00 Asymmetric (corresponding to the first half of Ashtanga primary)
12.30 Seated/Lotus (corresponding to the second half of Ashtanga primary)
2.00 48 min Sit
Third Session Vinyasa Krama
3.00 Supine prep plus Sarvangasana vinyasas
Inverted Sequence (corresponding Ashtanga finishing)
6.00 48 min Sit
So a kind of 'retreat' day.
Below however is a traditional Yogabhyasi daily practice outlined by Ramaswami. I've summerised it to save our eyes.
I'm assuming this is during the seven years of study when living with the guru.
Can't say I followed the timings above that closely but started my Sury's at 5:03 AM and finished my final pranayama at 18:45. After the first session of Asnana/pranayama meditation I stopped for a cup of tea, watching the Richard Freeman video that I threw a five minute post together on yesterday. After the second session I had a bagel (with smoked salmon scrambled eggs), followed by a quick bath. To allow the bagel more time to digest I started the third session with another 48 min Sit then moving on to asana.
Finished the day with pranayama.
This didn't feel like one of those 'challenges' I used to do in the past, the Richard Freeman two weeks to karandavasana challenge or the Iyengar'ish 108 dropbacks, this was more to show how this approach to practice is something one could do all day (not that one would want to), the breath steady throughout, the heart too and with the diaphragmatic breathing I didn't sweat a drop....
I once practiced Ashtanga Primary, 2nd and Advanced A one after the other (common back in the day supposedly), it was surprisingly OK but I was exhausted afterwards, last night I went out for Soba and just felt like every cell in my body was alive rather tired, had a hot bath and slept like a baby. This morning I felt perfectly fine
At one point during the practice I thought why not 24 hours then rather than merely 12....
And the temptation of course to practice the asana for 12 hours straight, run through all the Vinyasa Krama sequence one after the other and then finish off with pranayama, pratyahara and meditation. Why not, I don't feel I'm consuming any energy practicing like this but rather creating it, as if the asana is practicing itself, the vinyasa like a generator.
But that would defeat part of the object of the exercise, I wanted to draw attention to the pranayama, to the 'Sit', show how these were equal to the asana however tempting it may be to focus on posture. Supposedly Krishnamacharya told Ramaswami that the pranayama should be twice as long as the asana practice and the meditation practice twice as long as the pranayama. Now that is an interesting idea, an hour of asana, two of pranayama and a four hour sit.
Or perhaps thirty minutes of key asana, Paschimottanasana, Maha mudra, Sarvangasana and sirsasana, baddha konasana perhaps ( best prep ever for padmasana) then an hour of pranayama and a two hour sit, that's doable.... next week perhaps.
An interesting aspect was the quality of the sit after the different aspects of practice, I'd like to explore this further. I found the Sit difficult after all the backbending in the first session, was restless and bringing the mind back to focus was work. The sit after all the Asymmetric and seated quite the opposite, a beautiful Sit as was that after the inversions.
The yogabhyasi should.....
- Wake up a couple of hours before dawn - or at least early in the morning.
- Contemplate his guru in his mind and his dear deity in his heart.
- Clean teeth, proceed with usual morning ablutions, take bath.
- Sit in a comfortable yoga position on a soft spread
- Meditate intently on Ishvara to state resolve, mentioning place and time.
- Utter a suitable prayer to Nagajara then proceed with asanas.
- During the practice of asanas when one becomes fatigued practice savasana, or if refreshed continue with asana if not move on to viparitakarani
- Mentally salute the great yogis and their disciples.
- Contemplate the lord (Siva) with a calm mind.
- Sit in siddhasana or baddhapadmasana and practice pranayama accompanied by the great bandhas at the appropriate stages.
- Start with ten breath controls and increase daily by five
- First pranayama should be nadi sodhana, alternate nostrils refered to as anuloma and viloma by some
- A kumbhaka called surybheda with the requisite bandhas should then be practiced.
- This should be followed by certain mudras ( especially maha mudra).
- Thereafter one should surrender the practice to the lord (Ishvarapranidhanam).
- After practice one should bathe in hot water.
- Then one should perform ones daily duties.
- The above mentioned yoga practice should be repeated at noon.
- After some rest one should have patya (satvic food) lunch.
- After lunch he should listen to the puranas, practice namasankirtanam of isvara but preferably research authentic texts of liberation such as Yoga, Samkhya, Vedanta and so on.
- At dusk one should practice sayam sandhya, but proceeded byan hour of yogabhyasa.