You might know I really admire this young whippersnapper named Jason Silva. He has a show somewhere in TV land that I don’t watch, but he shares amazing stuff on his twitter feed. In case you thought I only moan about asana and the consequences of overeating and overboozing, I do sometimes take a minute to consider the why of existence. I am also considering re reading JPS’ B&N but this time I am not 19 just trying impress someone handsome. That’s how I ended up reading Atlas Shrugged, But that’s neither here nor there.
This is part two of a very fast paced but fascinating series. I have a strong hunch that this will not be one of my most viewed posts, but I really loved this. Must thank Nobel over at Yoga in the Dragon’s den for planting some interest in checking out Jason’s recommendation today.
You probably know we all have been reading David Garrigues’ post on perfection. Maybe you also happen to read Chris Courtney’s Yoga for Perfectionists over at yoganonymous.com. They appeared on my FB news feed on the same day. Maybe you should not be reading the opinions on perfection from someone who started her practice around 10:45 AM today, but here are my two cents. Desire for perfection (or any other damn thing/situation) comes from unmet needs. Why do you want perfection (in this particular instance)?? Be careful how you answer that because I have recently discovered that as soon as we give ourselves permission to go after what we want most of us realize we don’t actually know exactly what we want. Maybe you do so in that case proceed. Perfection becomes a non issue when there is a foundation of self trust. Trusting your impulses without judgement determines whether any learning or improvement project is going to be approached as war against the faulty self or as a discovery that transforms the already pretty good self. Notice how much practice it takes to use the term pretty good on yourself honestly. In public. Anyway, I just noticed that one post was approaching desire as benign and the other was noticing desire as compulsion. Perfection can be sought through war against the self, or through peace with the self. My guess is both get it done. Only one way with less carnage.
I suggest that you check to see how I filched everything here from Charles Eisenstein’s chapter on Struggle from his book The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible.
This one http://yogarose.net/2014/02/14/role-led-ashtanga-classes/
and this one http://matthewremski.com/wordpress/update-2-what-are-we-actually-doing-in-asana-questions-questions-questions/
Convince me that the teacher to student transmission is to be done as individually and as gradually as possible. These two conversations also convince me that even though the student might think that they are choosing a teacher, it is really the teacher who decides to say yes to the responsibility of teaching that student. They also convince me that a group environment is never the optimal environment to transmit any kind of knowledge. Ask any elementary school teacher about their regrets about teaching large groups. Again we revisit the unrealistic and idealized notion that makes us believe that learning movement is to be free of mistakes that are categorized as mistakes because pain was felt, when it is in fact that pain which was the indicator for correcting and re directing course. I am a yoga student who knows for sure that she does not want to be a yoga teacher, so I write without the authority or credentials that a yoga teacher might have with respect to injuries and their relationship to the focus (or lack of focus) on alignment, etc. I do speak as someone who had to watch a toddler learn to walk and get banged up in spite of baby proofing the joint up the whazoo. I also speak as someone who has seen others make painful mistakes that they were warned to avoid by someone with knowledge and excellent teaching skills. So, optimize the learning environment and the learning conditions all you want, you gifted, concerned, well meaning and generous teachers. But please don’t believe that pain proofing the environment is a gold standard indicator of good teaching.
…To all the bloggers that have posted videos, conference notes, Instagram photos, snippets of their daily routines, from Mysore. It really is a community service and it is much enjoyed not just appreciated. Today was a particularly sumptuous feast of all of the above.
I am also enjoying all the sharing of interviews and teacher posts, and humor filled clips that have been appearing in the interwebs these past few days. Everybody’s practice is valuable and benefits our world.
I’m on my way home. I hopped on the Q17 at Kissena Blvd and hopped off on Flushing Ave., caught a #7 to Grand Central, and am now on MetroNorth heading to New Canaan. Can you tell that I’m a public transportation geek? The trip to the Ganesh temple in Queens was to start at eleven am but the bus finally appeared around what’ 12:45? Not too bad. In the meantime I learned from Robert Moses that my home altar should be in the northeast corner of a room and that it must be woken up and put to bed daily, not just when I practice at home. Oops. The bus ride was free of bad traffic and I sat next to a fabulous woman named Anna who volunteers and practices at the Broome Street Temple. Once we got there, we left our shoes outside, and I do mean outside like by the sidewalk. The temple was beautiful and full of families dedicating and I could hear priests chanting. I felt like a complete interloper, sort of interrupting peoples’ rituals just by walking around and looking. I maybe spent 15 minutes there. It was a wonderful 3 day workshop because I did not really retreat from the world, with lovely hospitality from the entire community at Eddie’s shala. Maybe I should have told someone that I knew my way back home from Queens? Nah! It’s not like it was a school trip with a head count right? ( former teacher shudders and feels guilt).
I would blog about the lecture on vedanta if I knew what I was talking about. Unfortunately I would just be typing my very detailed notes. If I had been smart and less shy I would have taken screen shots of the powerpoint slide show like my very smart neighbor. Did I already mention that this has been my first experience with Ashtanga yoga and powerpoint? :)
I think yogis call it shakti. Call it whatever you want. This here Broome street shala & temple has it in spades. Stuff happened to my body here that has not happened before. Lots of stuff happening my mind. Lotsa notes for later
So very appropriately, for this Holiday weekend, the retreat is going to give me some hints on how to not futz so much when I already have such an awesome vehicle to reach liberation. Robert Moses sounds like my uncle’s wife Renate who is from Hannover. He speaks with such loving tenderness and playfulness. I love him. There is nothing more enthralling than watching a puja being performed if you scored a wall and have something soft to sit on. Then you can just loose yourself in the ritual. Drinks (okay, club soda ) with my cyber friend K at Osteria Morini beforehand. Such fun and ease.
This is my one and only child. She is scrappy, sweet and strong. I miss her and I love her!!!
blinknow.org – Journal – Meet our Women’s Center Fellow: Magdalena Long.