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May 28 to June 1, 2019
This year’s course will include Mysore practice and in-depth work on pranayama and the anatomy of breathing. We will also focus on the intricacies of inner forms as they apply to the intermediate series of the Ashtanga Vinyasa system. In order for our practice to have a delightful effect, we need to approach the asana practice with a contemplative understanding of the subtle art of pranayama, mudra, and bandha. Without this deeper understanding, the practice of asana can lead to injury and a mechanical, even competitive, approach.
In this five-day intensive we will shed light on the opening, exhilarating effects of a focused and careful pranayama practice and its impact on the internal forms of asana. Morning Mysore asana practice will allow time for individual needs to be explored and met. Emphasis will include assisting the postures and their subtle forms so that they remain grounded and meditative as well as expansive. We’ll study the subtle movements within the postures and those that connect to the postures, exploring alternatives, therapeutic applications, and hands-on adjustments. Afternoon sessions will include chanting, meditation, and philosophical inquiry.
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Shiva represents pure consciousness, and in mythology the true Self, which cannot be reduced to proper linear orthodox practice. He is a demonstration that the underlying pure nature of our being always overflows from the tidy categories of the unenlightened mind to form a residue. The snakes around Shiva’s neck, waist, and arms often represent this residue. He sits in the moon of nectar—compassion—at the crown of the head, dispensing this compassion to all beings.