Saturday, November 28, 2009

changes and stillness

My kids got back today!! I have some trouble thinking about other things :-)
“The seer is pure consciousness. He witnesses nature without being reliant on it.” (Iyengar translation)
I read, my inner seer witness change and have peace with it. My inner seer (feminine Danish form: “seerske”) is always present. The position as detached observer is always a possible position.
Thanks. That’s a relief to know.
Iyengar makes me aware of intelligences as part of the material world, and therefore also changing. Or maybe the other way around? Since intelligence and perception changes it is a part of material world, which is dominated by change.
Desikachar makes me aware of that the seer always perceives through the mind and senses and is coloured by the state of my mind and senses. I guess that it explains why I cannot think about other things, I look so much on the change (kids returning back from ozzy-ground) that there is a bigger identification to the perceiving senses and intelligence than to the firm inner seer :-)
I always find that yoga have a purifying effect, the tea after an yoga-class tastes more, the sounds gets more distinct and colours intensifies. I have the same experience with being connected or with meditation. It takes me to a state where my senses are more tuned… I lack words for that experience, but you’ve all probably tried it.
I’m inspired to go either to search for the steady, firm observer and the changing perceiver in my classes or to go for the purifying effect. Maybe I do both haha
Can there be something unchanging in a dynamic serie of asanas… can change be experienced in a static asana? I already know something still in the midst of changes in life, and I know changes in my opinions, attitudes, experience of a static situation.
Love Jenni

Sunday, November 22, 2009

the small self and the cosmic self :-)

I’ve been resisting even to start writing this post. The resistance is with me right now :-) Because, you see, this sutra is like a whole cosmogony, a way of looking at life, that baffles me and overwhelms me. The sutra it self is ok: “The gunas (three qualities of nature) generate their characteristic divisions and energies in the seer. Their stages are distinguishable and non-distinguishable, differentiable and non-differentiable.” (Iyengar translation, 2.19)
This sutra unfolds layers of nature’s manifestations. Fine! I’m on it. Let’s seek into what we can and cannot distinguish and differentiate…

Then Iyengar unfolds a classification which is a part of the yoga-philosophy “way of thinking” that I was unaware of. You get to share my own notes here.

“Nature (prakrti) consists of cosmic intelligence (mahat), which has the three qualities of luminosity (sattva), action and motion (rajas) and inertia (tamas).” From these qualities, our life rise and cycles…
“The individual counterpart of cosmic intelligence (mahat) is consciousness, or citta. Citta consists of mind (manas) which reviews sensory and vibrational stimuli; intelligence (buddhi), which is the discriminatory faculty; and ego or small self (ahamkara) which is the individuals “I”.”

After I’ve read this, my head exploded. Everything in me objects every time I read a classification (consider my daily day in a library:). Something awakens that wants to prove it wrong, that’s just how my ego works…
I haven’t experienced anything afterwards, which couldn’t be categorized under one of the three qualities. And this became my teaching, to explore the three qualities in every asana.

But I get to get more overwhelmed. Iyengar unfolds even more classifications here. “There are also five senses of perception – ears, tongue, eyes, nose and skin…” Yes, western-schooled-Jenni agrees and love that the organ is mentioned instead of the sense.
He continues: “five organs of action – legs, arms, speech, genital and excretory organs.” I can’t help smiling. I never thought like this -it tickles my brain.
The five elements, senses and organs of action are distinguishable and concrete in form. They produce changes that may be pleasant or unpleasant.
There are the five subtle parts of the elements and the small self and the deep within spiritual self that exists in a vibrational form, not distinguishable or differentiated.
Creation is a process when the unspecified matter transforms into specific.
The reversed process, when specified or concrete matter turns into the universal spirit (purusa), can be seen as a divine marriage – “which becomes possible through the work of yoga.”

I need some time, but I’m so grateful to you, for making me put words on my understanding and my focus in Iyengars text this week.
Love and Namasté

Saturday, November 14, 2009

just a check in...

Today I need both Iyengar and Desikachar. D: gives me the starting point for my meditation of the tree qualities (heaviness, activity and clarity) of nature:

“All that is perceived includes not only the external objects but also the mind and senses. They share three qualities – heaviness, activity and clarity. They have two types of effects – to expose the perceiver to their influences or to provide the means to find the distinction between them and itself.” (Desikachar translation)

I: offers my relation to the world (my senses, actions and mind…) a position of serving:

“Nature, it’s three qualities sattva, rajas and tamas, and it’s evolutes, the elements, mind, senses of perception and organs of action, exist eternally to serve the seer, for enjoyment or emancipation.” (Iyenagr translation)

Today the class was about seeking for enjoyment or emancipation. Also for me as a teacher. I hope to get time to write some more :-)
Love Jenni

Saturday, November 07, 2009

blessings to a wild thoughtlife :-)

“The cause of actions that perceives painful effects is the inability to distinguish what is perceived from what perceives.” (Desikachar translation) He specifies that; what is perceived changes (the mind, body, senses and objects) but there is an entity in us, that perceives. My guess is that this is something … still… the island in the river?
Or with Bouanchauds words; pain comes from confusion between the spiritual principle and the material world. To me this sentence is easy to read. To try to get “everlasting”, “comfort”, “trust”, “always” out of another human being, or a relationship… Or money, or stimulants, or work or whatever material… is confusing the material with spiritual principles.
This week all my translations give me the same, so I can use whoever.

In my asana work, this sutra inspires me to connect to the observing entity in me, not my senses, my body or the situation. This is probably why it sometimes intensifies my asana to close my eyes; I connect more to the observing entity in me. And more connection to this entity means more oneness, more intensity, like the laser ray that gets so strong by centring instead of spreading out.
In my teaching, this is why working with a theme, works for me. It gathers my teaching rays :-) and it avoids me from trying to please different yogis or do something for them (control or manipulate). It’s a more honest position for me as a teacher and it works, it really does. I guess this sutra in my private life is in the words “it’s JUST a feeling” (they pass, don’t get too attached) or “it’s JUST a thought, it’s not personal” (I’m not my every thought, my every opinion). If you could see my thoughts you would know what a blessing this sutra really is :-)
Love Namasté