For warning’s sake, this will be a blog about yoga asana, so if that will wear your patience I don’t know that you will want to read this one.
I swear to God I think it would be possible to levitate in that room. With so many bodies, intensity, breath, there is something going on in there. Gravity defying. A magical lightness that occurs when you go up, maybe just because everyone around you makes it look so easy, you just lift up. Not literally, but almost.
And to have been here, my last two visits, post partum, post car accident, it’s truly a great thing to be able to practice in that shala without pain. Something I appreciate every day I am here.
Today is another miracle of sorts for this body, with my last two visits there were no poses added. After Aurora was born all Sharath would say was slowly, slowly, when I expressed my frustration at my back’s lack of cooperation and freedom from pain. The time before I was here only a month, and there was just too much going on to be even thinking about it, if I remember correctly he took away Dwi Pada and then a week later gave it back. Then he left for a week, and Saraswati had me go to Karandavasana. When he came back I stopped again at Dwi Pada and he didn’t say anything. But that was 2006.
And today, well, in Encinitas in April he let me finish second series, after only 16 years of practice.
Today was the first day I would practice second here in Mysore, it is customary to practice Primary for the first week, no matter what poses you were given before. By the magic of the room I stayed up in Pincha Mayurasana. Then he was waiting, there, and saying something to me, after he helped me with Karandavasana. Oh, no, it was just a California treat then, because they used to do that, let you do things on tour that you wouldn’t get to do in Mysore. Is he saying backbending?… But no, he says, Take rest, and I remember, in Encinitas he let us lay on the floor after Karandavasana for few moments, a chance to rest. This is a new tradition I have no problem with whatsoever. 🙂 Then slowly, slowly, I make my way through the rest of the series.
During backbends the oxygen deprivation was getting pretty strong. I bent over a couple of times between, just trying not to pass out, just get through it. One more. One of his helpers came to help me today, asking if I wanted to grab, not today, maybe later, not this day.
The changing room is rather cold, and currently infested with mosquitoes. It’s a funny thing to be laying in savasana slapping yourself and thinking of non violence in the practice in a whole new light. But these mosquitoes only leave big welts that don’t last long. And the sounds of Mysore waking up are starting outside, it was what I was remembering as I prepared to come here, being in that changing room, the birds and Mysore waking with the sun.
After practice, there’s a coconut waiting. I wrap myself in my shawl and just sit, being, people talk around. Sometimes there is something to say, but sometimes there isn’t, sometimes there is just time to sit and absorb everything, to let it all wash over you in the early morning light.
Now I just need to get through the rest of the week.
That will be another miracle too. 🙂