Writings: Practice

Asana and Sadhana as Prayer

Asana and Sadhana as Prayer

I used to hear my teacher Sri Pattabhi Jois during conferences go out of his way to remind us that beginning practice with Surya Namaskara was an act of devotion and not a warm up.
An Ashtangi in a Cave and an Ashtangi in a Tribe

An Ashtangi in a Cave and an Ashtangi in a Tribe

It can be helpful to remember that the system is meant to be fluid as opposed to rigid, like a cell with a permeable membrane. A healthy cell allows traffic to flow both ways across the membrane. The ashtanga system is meant to provide rules and also to l
Asana Kitchen: Yogi’s Predicament of the Peacock and Ego

Asana Kitchen: Yogi’s Predicament of the Peacock and Ego

The peacock expressing himself in his own original way with full confidence is automatically attractive, no need for an extra push from the ego. No matter what he physically looks like he will be beautiful when he expresses himself from an honest, natural
Walking the tight rope of the student teacher relationship

Walking the tight rope of the student teacher relationship

The solitary quest that takes your whole life. And yet the universe has conspired to make it so that you need a guide. Even the most independent person needs help, an ally. And a good teacher is strong willed. They have ideas about how the student should
Static vs Dynamic learning models of Iyengar and Ashtanga Yoga

Static vs Dynamic learning models of Iyengar and Ashtanga Yoga

The two systems, static versus dynamic, represent the difference between learning through conscious, moment to moment self correction (static) and learning through a kind of supra sensory, intuitive approach that relies on unconscious obedience to inner ca
Three Life Stages of your Yoga Practice

Three Life Stages of your Yoga Practice

As you go through this learning progression you aim to strike just the right balance of being content with where you are while at the same time aiming to extend the range of your perceived and actual limits. In the creation phase as you test your limits yo
No reason is the best reason to practice

No reason is the best reason to practice

Practice only because you want to practice. End of statement. Don’t do it for any reason at all, not for following a lineage, for weight loss, to get in shape, fun, health, spiritual growth, realization, prayer, or devotion. NOT FOR ANY OF THOSE REASONS.
When your Yoga practice becomes a pain in the asana. No guilt. No shame. No fear.

When your Yoga practice becomes a pain in the asana. No guilt. No shame. No fear.

Attaining a mature practice can only happen through piling up nearly countless failed attempts to become skilled enough in the techniques to avoid the painful consequences that come from wrong thinking, wrong effort, mistakes, misperceptions, and other for
Dear Future Ex-Lovers of Ashtanga

Dear Future Ex-Lovers of Ashtanga

To me the ashtanga family is like a fragile eco system and thus your own internal relationships and the external relationships with others in the family have to be tended to very carefully in order maintain a balance. And so even though I may disagree wi
Do we need the beautiful Yoga photo?

Do we need the beautiful Yoga photo?

Your efforts in practice are meant to feed the ideal images that you are shaping within your mind and body, and this maturation takes place nearly imperceptibly, little by little, day by day. Part of establishing yourself in the discipline, is learning to

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