Friday, February 27, 2009

sharing direct experience

Last week I dedicated my classes to focus on life and being alive – I found myself focusing on breath and the experience of movement. I kept coming back to this – life in my meditation became an meditation on movement (breath, heart beat, joints, and dynamic asanas), motion as a meditation is good to me. This weeks sutra says:
“When we are confronted with problems, the counsel of someone who has mastered similar problems can be great help.” (Desikachar translation of Patanjali sutra 1.37)
Yes, this is my experience, I believe that experience and serenity can “rub of” on me. Or as Bouanchaud says “The mind takes colour from it’s object…” a person who have the experience I seek, he calls a mediator.
Inside myself I have an inner mediator. If I’ve found a way to solve a problem in one area in my life – for example work – than I know that a similar problem, at another area in my life, can benefit from this experience of solution.
For me the words: “someone who has mastered similar problems”, means someone who can share the experience, not just an opinion or advice based on “thinking”. This reminds me of sutra 1.7 (Desikachars unfolding) which tells me, when direct comprehension is not an option, than relate to trusted authorities, to achieve indirect comprehension. It’s about living the truth. As my photographer friend says “as little as possible between the lens and the motif” or something like that :-) I get him…
Soo in class I will continue to support my students to talk to each other, about different teachers and different yoga – experiences, and tell them to try several different teachers, and not judge all yoga by what they meet in my class. I also want to work with direct experience and put in some partner work, to enjoy sharing experience. Again this sutra reveals how important serenity is, and how we approach this peaceful state…
Kate on this sutra
Jenni Saunte

Friday, February 20, 2009

let go of the detail, focus on experiencing 1.36

“When we inquire to what life is and what keeps us alive, we may find some solace for our mental distractions.” (Desikachar)
Again, a suggestion to solve my mental disturbances. In my world I call this treasure hunting. It doesn’t have to be inquiries to life, God or good. It can be… just participating in reality – sensing it, instead of living my opinion, my evaluation.
In life I can get mentally disturbed by getting rejected.
I just received a work related letter, which could be read as a rejection of my ideas, my self gets hurt (attachment to my ideas) and I can go into fight mode (who has the right reality:-).
If I live my evaluation of this situation, I can argue until tomorrow, why I’m right and they are wrong.
In my mind I can construct thousands of answers, were I crush them with my wit and sharp words and arguments :-) but than again, what do I get out of this? A night with mental disturbance and little sleep.
Sutras 1.36 suggest some perspective, my treasure hunt.
If I, instead of looking into the fight, choose to look at the possibility that it is “just an e-mail”, it is “just another human being” and I really doesn’t have to do anything with it (right now). Than it’s just not threatening.
My disturbance gets smaller – I love and adore the word “just” -it’s great.
Thanks to this act of faith, I can get to re-read the letter and see if there, possibly, is anything I can use!
Is there something I don’t have to defend myself (yes – self…) against, and when I trust love, to be a solid foundation – unfolded in this letter, maybe I actually can get some treasure out of this mail.
What’s in it for me?!
(and if this fails I have a backup to trust – “rejection is protection” – which is my experience)

Consideration of things greater than jennis selves helps put jenni in perspective.

Perspective of something greater than me, is my truth, I get to practice being “part of” which is true identity for me. I guess that’s why it’s so calming to focus on a greater perspective – it’s simply true, for body, mind and spirit. I get to be whole by being part of – integrity is a grand present.

In asana work, I want to let go of the detail, focus on the experiencing the sensation of life. I also want to try out some of the pranayama, from the workshop I attended this week – pass it on.
Namasté and serene minds – no disturbances whatsoever to all of you :-)
Jenni Saunte

Friday, February 13, 2009

sensory perception adventure, 1.35

“Objective sensory perception stabilizes and focuses our thought.”
My perception of my selves and others, is not objective, neither is it one thing. The more I discover that my perception is depending on my attitude or my experienced reality, the more I’m set free (=objective) from the idea that my perception is the one and only way to experience my selves and others. (loove the plural form of “selves” :-)
I don’t think my attitudes are obstacles in their nature, but thinking my attitudes (or my opinions for that sake) is me – well that often lead to trouble…
So, I know from experience that thinking that sensory perception is personal makes a lot of unmanageability, through this I can relate to this sutra.

Right now I’m working with theories that claim our bodies are like spaceships, gathering information about the surrounding space – it’s through our bodies we relate to each others and the world around us. We often forget how enjoyable and satisfying this experience can be. I love this picture. And the consequences it has.

When I get really tired in the dynamic asana work, I love the suggestion of; “maybe I’m not tired,(haha) maybe it’s a story :-) Or when the perception “I lack flexibility in a joint” offers it’s service, I can try another story; “how is this joint perfect right now…”

Bouanchaud talks about perspectives, I think this is what I get from having a long time daily practice, it gives a perspective - an entity, to the asana and thereby lets the asana be just a part of something bigger, get a proportion.

To my teaching this sutra encourage working on “judge not” and search for the reason (attitude, or perspective) to do yoga today – and bring that into every asana.
But since it’s valentines day, my Saturday will be about love, love, love - and I will give an extra class on partner-yoga-asanas and a chocolate meditation – that can be a sensory perception adventure !
Love and peace
Jenni Saunte

Friday, February 06, 2009

clear, bright and steady (1.34)

“The mind also attains serenity through prolonged exhalation and holding the breath.”
The first question I always ask me is: Is this my experience?
And here I have to go with Yes! If my mind is really messed up I add a sound to my exhalation(not positive phrases, never really been my thing). I recognize my truth in the words “An agitated mind disturbs breathing. Calming the breathing process, therefore, can quiet the mind.”
I have a grounding feeling in my exhalation, and grounding has a quality of peace to me.
I’ve heard, that serenity means having one thought at a time :-) which I can relate to… In Merriam Webster’s definition, serenity has qualities of clear, bright and steady. It sounds like a description of ujjayi breath, or the yoga breath (wonder what you call it in English…) to me, or a good headstand or when a pose transcends just doing it and… becomes. Clear, bright and steady.

Bouanchaud writes that traditionally the exhalation and suspending breath after exhalation symbolizes humility and sacrifice. Yes, I recognize this as well. It’s been a helpful (living prayer) to unclench my claws of attachments – to let go into the exhalation, and experiencing the rich filled emptiness afterwards – humbling in the best of ways. And “I” don’t have to do it – if “I” wait long enough it gets done through me :-)

So, for the classes I plan to focus on clear, bright and steady. Through focusing on breath, especially exhalation and suspending breath after exhalation. Beauty!
Jenni Saunte

Christine on sutra 1.34

Kate on the sutra...