Are you ruled by your heart or your mind? Do you see difference in things or do you see the unity? John’s lecture today was a fusion of a few key teachings. The “One” , the absolute becomes two. The heart and the mind. The mind sees difference- it categorizes, it is discriminating. The heart sees unity- it sees the connection between things.
I was trying to puzzle this out from John’s earlier lecture. He said the One was like light. The light shines through a prism ( maya) and becomes this group of colors. It looks like different colours to us but really it is just one light. In the relative world though we see colours. We gives them names: Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Purple. The mind sees red , green, yellow etc. The heart …I believe….sees a rainbow. I have to see if this analogy works but I kind of like it.
In Anusara we can get very analytical and live in our heads. We can get wrapped up in all the technical parts of the Universal Principles but then it no longer becomes Anusara. When you are in your mind you are are not truly in the flow. To remember the meaning you have to be in your heart. It is the big picture- to see that we are all from the same source and we are all connected.
I think John was big on the heart and mind lecture because we all do tend to get wrapped up in the details- even in everyday life. We had to discuss and learn alignment detail today but he didn’t want us to lose the bigger picture.
We went through matching up the 5 elements with the 5 principles: Open to Grace- sky, Muscular Energy- earth, Inner Spiral- water, Outter Spiral – fire, Organic Energy- air. Each Principle then takes on the quality of the elements- ie. inner spiral is water- is it accommodating and accepting and it moves down. Therefore inner spiral helps move energy down the body- you feel more grounded. We then practiced this way using each of the elements in a pose. I have done this before but it was a great review and reminder. Much of what John says is not new material to me but it seems to go deeper every time. i pull new nuances out of the material and become clearer on the teachings. Being with John is like this big hit of energy , of shakti, and he takes you back to the basics in the best way. He helps take you back to the path of the heart.
I practiced with the merry band again at lunch and tried out ekapada rajakopatasana 4 . I am learning how to drop back into urdva dhanurasana. I am not afraid- just not so bendy! The rest of the group were doing sirsasana to dwi pada backbends and I played with that a bit but without an assist I chickened out! I mean- sometimes we are fearful for good reason. I am pretty sure my upper back isn’t ready for that….
I did a demo today which was fun- I don’t get so freaked out anymore. I am trying hard to “let go” a little more- I spent so long getting strong that now I need to soften a bit more. I had some great help this afternoon from Marc in pincha- balanced on my own in pincha and handstand too. He has the best vibe and I was so sad to see him leave this afternoon. I will miss him and I am looking forward to when our paths will cross again. Kelly gave me some geat tips in my drop back as well and I have hope that one day that will come naturally. Lots to work on when I get home. (You better get ready Lauren!)
Some members of the merry band had dinner together and I had a really nice chat with Yasushi Tanaka who is with Studio Yoggy, John’s translator, and only certified teacher in Japan. He has a lovely sense of humour and we have not really ever had the chance to chat. It was a great treat.
One last day to go. Practice all day and then a dharma talk with John on wabi-sabi after class tomorrow. I am still having the best time but I am feeling the pull to home and my family. When I am in my heart, I am with them.