SWAMPED, again, and as much as I wanted to write a post for this newsletter, too many papers are stacked up on my desk demanding my attention. I was thinking how much I wish I could just record something that was said during class that might be relevant to share on a big scale, I realized this has already happened! One clever student, who is also an amazing transcriber, has been sending me transcripts here and there, so I thought I was share a few relevant lines, relevant to our crazy cold weather, which requires that we attempt to balance vata so we don't get too crazy! Vata will go haywire when we have these extreme temperature changes. So if lately you feel stiffer, more tired, have more joint pain and more confusion, you are not alone! This is an example of how our environment can have a strong impact on how we are doing. Sneaky...
(This followed transcript is after practicing the Palm Tree Vinyasa)
"This is a set of movements that is specifically designed to lower vata, that is to calm the air element, the air and ether element in us, and once that is done we're able to focus a little bit more, we're able to feel more grounded, we're able to relax. And we're able to hear what's going on inside, to see what's going inside."
After 1 round: "Give the body permission to relax and settle, and notice your ability, the depth of the attention you can pay to yourself right now"
After 2 rounds: "Draw the attention inward, see how easy that action is, see how much you can pay attention to what is going on inside. One thing that happens when our vata starts to balance is that we pay less attention to what is going on outside of us, for fear that there's threat, and we can spend more time paying attention to what is going on inside of us. And that inward attention is not a selfish attention, it's an attention that allows our energy to expand, and include everybody. So see if you can let the body get a little softer here, the attention a little sharper, inhale, etc"
After 3 rounds: "Feel the body a little like liquid, rigidity softens, tension releases, attention comes inward. See if you can hear the beating of your heart. If it helps, place your hands directly onto the heart."
Attention rides on the breath. It is said that the mind is pure prana and prana is brought in on the breath. And we have more access to that prana when vata is balanced. Because the vata that's not balanced is moving all over the place like a tornado. And as you view these slow rhythmical movements with awareness and encouraging the mind
to stay active in what's being felt, you will notice that attention increases.
See above for a link to the Palm Tree Vinyasa. Try it and see if your experience matches the above description. You may find this experiment also helps to balance your vata!