Flotsam & Jetsam

September 23, 2013 § Leave a comment

Soundtrack

मैत्री करुणा मुदितोपेक्षाणांसुखदुःख पुण्यापुण्यविषयाणां भावनातः चित्तप्रसादनम् ॥३३॥

maitrī karuṇā mudito-pekṣāṇāṁ-sukha-duḥkha puṇya-apuṇya-viṣayāṇāṁ bhāvanātaḥ citta-prasādanam ||33||

1.33 In relationships, the mind becomes purified by cultivating feelings of friendliness towards those who are happy, compassion for those who are suffering, goodwill towards those who are virtuous, and indifference or neutrality towards those we perceive as wicked or evil.” (translation)

For a while now I’ve woken up with Jayashree’s intonation of this verse playing in my mind, making recurring appearances throughout the day. It is remarkable considering that it’s been a while since I chanted the Yoga Sutras with any regularity, and, among the many Sanskrit chants out there, this one has chosen to lodge itself in my brain. As far as verses go I guess this has immediate relevance for daily life, and is certainly a good mantra to keep in mind while: lining up for coffee, navigating traffic, dealing with difficult relationships, encountering opposing points of view……basically any situation that could trigger the ‘B*%#h’ button.

***

Dreams

I don’t have many practice-related dreams, but out of the maybe 4 or 5 I’ve had so far, at least half of them have to do with backbending. The first one occurred about a year ago I think, when I was working on dropping back. The dream played like a film where I was watching myself drop and stand up effortlessly, over and over again. In the latest dream from a few nights ago, I was actually doing it. It started with Urdhva Dhanurasana and walking my hands in. I must have walked my hands and straightened them about three times before I noticed my heels out of the corner of my eye. I had walked right up to my feet and all that was left was to stand up, which I did, eventually, after figuring out which way was “up”. I got an enthusiastic “YES” from my teacher and a big hug at the end of it. I should add that the backbends in these dreams are all painless and open, quite unlike the embodied experience in reality. A girl can dream!

***

Ashtanga Blogging

There hasn’t been a lot of writing here lately because I tend to sit on the ideas that bubble up for blog posts, and they often have very short shelf-lives. I suspect this is for a number of reasons: the posts arise out of emotions or certain circumstances and, more often than not, resolve themselves either with the passage of time or a renewed perspective. It is an interesting exercise: instead of putting every idea to paper (or screen), letting it percolate for a bit and seeing if it remains. Usually, it doesn’t, and therefore I don’t write about it. Impermanence at work!

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