Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Things Are Not What They Seem

If there's one thing I've learned from yoga, it's at least this:

Things are not what they seem.

(By the way, I think that's a line from a somewhat old and very weird TV show called 'Twin Peaks.')

Here's my example.

It seems obvious that when you sit with the soles of your feet together in baddha konasana (bound angle pose) you're better off when your knees are close to the ground. You legs are resting flat on the floor rather than up in the air.

Here's Richared Freeman in baddha konasana.See the postscript below about the message of his audio tape series called "Yoga Matrix." His web site is Posted by Hello

So it would make sense then, that if your knees aren't close to the floor, you should just use your leg muscles to press them down. Right? Ahem. [Throat clearing.] No.

See her knees? They're up. Posted by Hello

Try it. Sit in bound angle pose. When you use your leg muscles to press your knees down, your sit bones move toward one another. The floor of your pelvis narrows. You literally restrict your ability to move freely in the pose. And you become more unstable.

However, if you sit in bound angle pose and very slightly raise your knees, you can feel the floor of your pelvis open. You increase both stability and freedom.

Now that you've got that action going, begin to extend your knees away from each other, as if you were trying to make your thigh bones longer. This adds to the opening and broadening of the pelvis and soon you can just let your legs slowly sink to the floor.

That's my tip.

Check the results of some of the 'obvious' things you think you should do. If they restrict freedom or stability, look for different, less obvious actions that might be more effective.

Don't just read about it. Get up. Experience it. Experience yoga!

Kevin Perry

p.s., Did you grapple with the question I asked yesterday: "If I am a spiritual being, why do I need a body?" I hope so. Consider this. There are spiritual beings without physical bodies (God, angels). There are physical beings without spirits (animals). But YOU are both...a spiritual being with a physical body. Why?

First of all, your body is a blessing. It's an incredible source of pleasure and joy. Secondly, your body is always with you. You never need to buy a device or remember to pack it along with you. It's always available for you to explore, just as I suggested yesterday. But why explore? Because your body is fertile ground for spiritual development. Richard Freeman says that your body is the "Yoga Matrix," the ground in which yoga grows. The highest purpose of yoga is union, spiritual union of your nature with the Divine. When I explore and practice with my body I become more senstitive and attuned to the Divine! My body is a vehicle through which I can know my nature and the Divine nature more vividly. What a gift we have been given!

So many systems that claim to be guiding people into closer communion with God characterize the body as a repugnant distraction to spiritual growth that must be tamed and restrained. What do you think?

Copyright 2005. All rights reserved by Mo Yoga LLC.


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