A proposal for practice: personal asana questions

Today I’ve been making my next year’s date book. You see, after falling while rollerblading yesterday, my left thigh is swollen by at least three inches in the back, warm, bruised, taught. Pretty sure I jacked something. So, I’m taking it easy… no Pigeon pose for me today! I was surprised at how much I could do, and not only how good it felt but also how much the swelling was eased by my practice. I also got back on the blades and practiced slowing down πŸ˜›

So today is slow and easy, end of vacation beginning of winter quiet. Mizzou also ate some Jayhawk roadkill, which I must admit I enjoyed. Especially since the game really happened in the fourth quarter. But I digress.

As I make this year’s calendar, each week features a pose, from Tadasana to Natarajasana. 44 weekly poses, 2 forms of salutations and 6 sanskrit chakra symbols. Each featured yoga picture has the sanskrit name and a question. For Tadasana: Where is your mountain? For Warrior I: What do you stand for? For Ardha Chandrasana: What do you reflect? What do you keep hidden? For Adho Muka Svanasana: What holds you up?

So, here’s my suggestion: during our next yoga practices, ask ourselves a question with each asana, a question that takes us deeper into that pose. Express the answer that arises in you with your next pose. In this way, you will be your own teacher through an entire practice.

I’d love to hear about your practice! And remember: yoga every day! (even just a little!)

5 thoughts on “A proposal for practice: personal asana questions

  1. Sorry …. I couldn’t get you…. As far as i know…. while practicing asanas we should concentrate on the body and breath and try to fell comfortable….. If we think about a question…. wont that affect us?

  2. Hi, amateuryogi! What a fantastic response! Absolutely, in body and breath: that is yoga.
    Mind, though, isn’t seperate. Spirit isn’t an add on. Mind & Spirit are body and breath.
    In my practice, I notice there are times when my mind and spirit are quiet and wordless and I cherish these times. However, when they aren’t, when words arise and emotions wax and wane, sometimes it helps me to have a framework for continuously choosing to let words, thoughts and emotions move through me like waves on an ocean.
    At such times, I find “concentrating” isn’t helpful to me and that it only scrunches up my face and contracts the asana that working through me. So it’s useful to ask myself questions and see what arises. It’s not so much “thinking about” a question as posing a question for myself and letting my body answer it, not with words but with asana.
    If this doesn’t work or isn’t helpful for you, then by all means, leave it be! I think we can find common ground in the Sutra: sthira sukham asanam: seat should be steady and comfortable. Namaste.

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