Salutations to the sun and moon. Please share with me what I need to learn.
May I let go what needs to be, while grace and balance stay with me.
And maybe most importantly, open my heart so my soul can be.
Today I am donating 20 bras that this body of mine will likely not fit into again. If only holding on to things wasn’t so easy, not that I don’t loose plenty of things that I don’t intend to, it actually happens just as easily, just not quite as continuously…
My observation of this makes me think and feel a few things…
Women Burning Bras
Women brutally killed by a mobs, how does this happen?
My body burning on a funeral pyre
How important it is to love and be kind to my body and all the macro and micro organisms that are hosting me in this experience of life.
These amazing words from a strong and beautiful woman:
“Everything—husband, wife, or even the body, is illusory. These are all shackles of illusion. Unless you can free yourself from these bondages, you will never be able to go to the other shore of the world. Even this attachment to the body, the identification of the self with the body, must go. What is this body, my darling? It is nothing but three pounds of ashes when it is cremated. Why so much vanity about it? However strong or beautiful this body may be, its culmination is in those three pounds of ashes. And still people are so attached to it!” -Sarada Ma
January 3rd, 2015 at a Perfect Knot Yoga Center in Madison, WI
This workshop is inspired by Auyrveda, Pranayama, Qigong, and Classical Indian Dance. Practices will be paired with Vidya Misra’s Vibrational Transdermal Creams of various Indian Herbs. All profits from event will be donated to help save the Perfect Knot Yoga Center in Madison, WI. $20/advanced registration or $25/at the door.
Register at the Perfect Knot 10 minutes before or just after a class on the current schedule to ensure someone is at the studio. See the schedule for most current class times. Or contact Raka via email @ firstname.lastname@example.org, via the form below, or phone to register (989) 600 2376.
Tulsi – Ou ji / Prana
DGL – Lifting the Sky / Wu Wei
Ashoka – Pranami / Smile of the Heart
Super Sport – Ganesh Thano Mantra
Fennel – Dantian’s Sun / Anulom Viloma
Brahmi – Tree of Life / Gratitude
Here in the Midwest I am blessed with experiencing all the seasons of the Earth in full force. We have a cold and snowy winter, the raging waters of spring, a hot sunny summer, and the beautiful colors of fall. I love all the seasons, but maybe the fall the best… or maybe that is just what is passing now. As flowers and leaves open and fall to the ground, birds fly through the sky, stopping sometime to visit on their migration to warmer waters. Color burst forth from the plants and nature living all around me. I store it away in my heart for the upcoming white of winter.
Flock of Hansa – Geese Migration
Hansaseeya and Alapadma – Geese and Lotus
Celebrating my Hindu heritage, I also burst out in colorful Odissi costumes with my students to stomp, pose, and dance for the Goddesses Durga, Lakshmi, and Kali. I cannot resist applying color to my cheeks and lips, kajol to line my eyes, jewels and metal to adorn, and bells around my ankles. Celebrating good over evil, light over darkness, thanking the great spirits of our universe for good luck and the fortune of this beautiful life I have been gifted.
Adorning w Shidoor and Bindis – Mirror Pose
The thing I love most about dancing Odissi is sharing a mystical world with my audience and students. My favorite dance always have and probably always will be those depicting my belief in the mysterious powers of the universe. I absolutely believe in the power of prayer, chanting, and celebrating our appreciation for the universe and the life forces that share our journey. This summer I am focusing my performances on these feeling and sharing two dances with my audiences: Mangalacharun an invocation dance for Lord Gonesh who helps us to remove obstacles from our path and Dashavatar the first piece of epic Geet Govinda by Sri Jaya Dev thanking Vishnu for protecting us and describing him and 10 of his incarnation. Both of these dances were originally choreographed by the late great Guru Kelucharun Mohapatra and taught to me by his student and my Guru Sangeeta Mahapatra Kar and I feel extremely blessed that through my guru’s and parent’s love I learned these dances that originate from other side of the planet in which I live, that are now directly part of my immediate world.
The exact translation of this mudra is half-flag. I am not sure that this is the same as flying a flag at half-mast to allow “the invisible flag of death” to fly at the top of the mast, but the significance to death’s presence, power, and prominence cannot be ignored as everything that lives must also die. It reminds me of the importance for us to have virtous thoughts while passing to the other side and to help those passing around us to find calm, quiet, and strength. May practice prepare us. My favorite usage of this mudra is to show the banks of river Yamuna, where Krishna hides the clothes of a gopi (milk maid) who is bathing in the river. Interestingly, Yamuna is the daughter of the Sun God, Surya and sister to Yama, Death. It is said that bathing in Yamuna, who is a holder of infinite love and compassion, can free one from the torments of the relm of her brother, death. Arda Pataka is also used to show the leaf panels that were used to write the Vedas when finally they were transferred to written form as well as to represent a knife or dagger and in our modern times I see many people use this mudra to also indicate a gun.
So happy to share my henna art with my classmates at the Kanyakumari school of Ayurveda this last weekend.