Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Au Revoir, Crocodile Hunter

Steve Irwin, the Crocodile Hunter, is gone.

If you haven't heard by now, the famous Australian, known for his enthusiasm for wild animals and made popular by his Discovery Channel show, met his untimely demise yesterday at the "hands" of...

Wrong! It was not a crocodile. It was a stingray.

Talk about Kundalini rising! He was stung right in the heart.

Crocodiles, and most wild animals of any size and ferocity, are terrifying to us. But this guy faced them all, with humor, dexterity and passion.

I'm thinking of the Bhagavad Gita in which the Pandava prince Arjuna is standing on the battle field filled with doubt. He realizes that the combatants he faces are his friends, close relatives and beloved teachers.

Here's what he says: "As I see my own kinsmen, gathered here, eager to fight, my legs weaken, my mouth dries, my body trembles, my hair stands on end, my skin burns, the bow Gandiva drops from my hand. I am beside myself, my mind reels." (from Stephen Mitchell, The Bhagavad Gita: a New Translation, 1.29-1.30)

Frightening. It sounds like he came face to face with a crocodile. He's facing death.

But Krishna, his charioteer, replies with these most beautiful words:
never have I not existed,
nor you, nor these kings;
and never in the future
shall we cease to exist. (2.12)

Contact with matter make us feel
heat and cold, pleasure and pain.
Arjuna, you must learn to endure
fleeting things--they come and go! (2.13)

When these cannot torment a man,
when suffering and joy are equal
for him and he has courage,
he is fit for immortality. (2.14) (from Barbara Stoler Miller, The Bhagavad-Gita)
Doesn't that sound like the Steve Irwin we saw on TV, stomping around in water and muck undaunted by hot or cold, storms or desert winds, and courageous and joyful while being charged or swiped at by an animal thrice his size?

Like Arjuna the warrior, he did his duty, and we benefitted from it.

Here's a picture of Steve in what looks to me like warrior pose!

If you're thinking of Steve Irwin being "gone," the Gita, the Song of Life says his atman, his Self, will never cease to exist.

That's why I called this Daily Yoga Tip "Au Revoir, Crocodile Hunter." Au revoir means until I see you again.

Yoga helps you see your true Self and that same greatness in others. May we all be as bold and alive as the Crocodile Hunter.

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

Kevin Perry

p.s., The Sanskrit Word of the Day from my previous Daily Yoga Tip was mukha. Mukha means mouth or face, as in gomukhasana, the cow face pose. Go means cow.

p.p.p.s., Today's Sanskrit Word of the Day is nakra. I'll tell you what it means next time.

p.p.p.p.s., Tomorrow I'll tell you about my very first encounter with crocodile pose. Don't miss it.

p.p.p.p.p.s., On Saturday, September 23, Sallie Keeney and I are teaching a 6-hour workshop called "The Foundations of Teaching Yoga." This workshop starts at 9 am and finishes at 4 pm. We'll take a 1-hour break for lunch.

Here's the cool part: it's by donation only. Pay what you want. Or pay nothing at all. You won't want to miss it.

At this workshop we won't be teaching yoga poses, we'll be teaching about teaching. So come prepared to teach. This workshop is designed for yoga teachers, teacher trainees, or folks who are considering becoming a yoga teacher. If you don't currently do yoga, this workshop is not for you.

You must register in advance by calling at Sandy Conner Otto at Natural Focus Yoga Studio, in Fulton, MO. She is our host for the day.

Please bring an audio recorder/play-back device (e.g., cassette recorder, digital recorder, dictaphone, etc.) if you have one, and your three favorite yoga pose books. If you like notes, bring a pen and a notebook. We won't be giving any cue sheets or handout materials.

See you there. Email me, or call, if you have questions at info@experienceyoga.org.

p.p.p.p.p.p.s., I'm going under the knife tomorrow for minor arthroscopic repair of the meniscus in my right knee. Your prayers and blessings are welcomed and appreciated.

Copyright 2006. All rights reserved, Mo Yoga LLC.
Kevin Perry
Mo Yoga LLC
1305 Elmerine Ave
Jefferson City, MO 65101

(573) 680-6737


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