Saturday, October 25, 2008

ACTION OVER FORM... on and off the mat

I've chosen to begin my autumn series of yoga classes with the theme of "action over form". This basic premise of Anusara yoga's Universal Principles of Alignment and of life itself can help us "let go" of our mind's fascination with results, or what we look like (ego mind attachments) and instead align us with yoga's true virtues through the utilization of our own divine energy which is always within us - awaiting activation. Act for the sake of action.

" You have a right to your actions,
but never to your action's fruits.
Act for the action's sake.
And do not be attached to inaction.

Self-possessed, resolute, act
without any thought of results,
open to success or failure."

Bhagavad Gita 2.47

We've all heard the euphemism, "the way things look aren't always as they appear"; in some asanas and in our 'doings' through out our days, we can have the appearance of looking effective even with little effort, in these cases we are not practicing yoga; we are not in an asana if we are not in the "seat of our soul".

An Anusara yoga practice values the importance of "action over form"... physically we experience the internal heat of muscular energy as we isometrically root into the earth while simultaneously hugging into our midline. By hugging our muscles to our bones we experience something and create change. This action is so much more productive than just holding ourselves up in a "form".

A central idea within the Universal Principles of Alignment is to uphold the 3 A's: Attitude, Alignment, and Action.

This is a foundational concept within the Anusara method in which every pose is infused with meaningful intention connected to the grand purposes of yoga* through the awareness of specific postural alignment, and balanced action between stability and freedom.

* Yoga is a powerful path to fulfill all of our deepest spiritual longings.
What do all people fundamentally want?
A: Happiness, love, health, peace, well-being, inner knowing.

To rephrase the Tao Te Ching:

Do your work, then step back.
The only path to serentiy.

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