Today’s perfect beauty offers itself as a poem. It touches me in ways I cannot describe, just as the qualities of good poetry defy description or understanding. Great poems touch and remain within as a confluence of feelings; a ‘Splendor In The Grass’ moment of pure intoxication that alters consciousness. Whether the poem holds extraordinary words, or simple ones, the symbolism illuminates something personally sublime that ignites the inner life. Meaning is secondary. This is true of any art. It can actually be true of most things, most Practices. Is it not why we practice?
A Yoga Practice can be a bridge to a mystic place I cannot know, or own, though I work it piece by piece, hour by hour. It’s like my garden in this exquisite moment. My hands, practicing beauty, have torn out, torn up, re-worked, and weeded every centimeter, until the mundane of dirt and plant suddenly stand in their own glorious poetic wisdom. What transpires to create this moment as sacred? To travel from the mundane to a time and place where mind and heart transfuse and pinion me against the earth, is no minor event.
Moments such as this are a goad for the tedious work. The practice, the mindless repetitions need to remember there is a God. If it’s only a momentary, inexpressible, breath…So be it. We may long to understand and share these feelings, intellectually pull things apart, but they have morphed into something beyond themselves, and are therefore mostly wordless. They are too full of life.
Poses, flowers, words, are tools of the craftsman. What creates the transformation? How do we move through the literalness of our craft, the deliberate training, and dissection, the intellectual recycling and repetition of the dry, salty, and dare I say, the pedantic? How do we cross the luminal doorway into a world of poetry, where Asana/meditation/Pranayma bring a wordless moment, another way of being?
I have no idea.
I am going to wander my garden and wait for an answer.
Asana: Tittibhasana/ Firefly Pose. A nice summer pose to do upon the grass, especially in the evening when you can join the throng of fireflies lighting the night.
An easy entrance to this Pose is from a low Malasana, feet open and wide, Sitts bones dropped toward the floor. Place palms inside the feet, fingers face forward, open the elbows, placing back of thighs over upper arms. Keep chest relating to the floor, lift lower Bandhas, release feet out, stretching toes. If this is not yet possible, place hands on two blocks, or just remain in opening position and visualize extending a leg out, then both. Next summer soon here.
Health Notes: Because lungs and abdominals are contracted, the spleen, intestines, kidneys, liver, prostate, and gall bladder are vitalized, and if practiced on a regular basis, this Pose helps prevent diseases of these organs. The nerves are soothed, and thighs and neck muscles stretched & strengthened.
Ayurvedically, we are in the hot Pitta energetic time of year. Remember that if you find nerves, tempers, frustrations, upset stomachs getting the best of you (Pitta Dosha imbalances) seek the opposite of its fiery-water nature. Eat to pacify your stomach acids, and quell irritability.
Simply put: sweet, astringent, and bitter tastes decrease Pita; i.e. squashes, whole grains, and fruits. Stay away from caffeine, hot spicy sauces, and alcohol. Pungent, salty and sour increase Pitta.