The Real Big Picture. The Overview Effect.

Throughout last week, thank to small and beautiful events, one after the other, I felt very strongly that everything is connected in a magic way that makes everything look like an amazing dream. I can not describe it, it’s just that feeling that I belong to something bigger, there is no words in my lips, there is no image in my mind, it is just that feeling in my heart.

It´s like tuned myself into a bigger wave of sounds and emotions that go beyond my little and -at the same time- important ego. Under this feeling, the ego seems more like an antenna, asking myself: where do you want to be tuned?

If you don´t know what I´m talking about, there´s a big chance that this movie will help you to understand it.

If you know, this movie will take you deeper!

Please take 20 minutes and give this gift to yourself.

It´s so beautiful that they talk about Samadhi.

Samadhi is the “goal” of the yoga practice, the “goal” of any spiritual practice. Subject and Object become one. Man and Earth.

For many years I imagined Samadhi as a mental golden room where everything fit perfectly, where, all the elements of life, were in a fluid order. Today, my idea of Samadhi has to do much more with just being alive. No room, no golden, no order whatsoever. The smiling chaos of life. The Dance.

A couple of weeks ago I was very confused and sad asking myself: what do I need to do with my life? The answer was so simple that my “sophisticated” mind couldn´t understand it: LIVE!

Today I feel that there´s no secret. That, there´s nowhere to go to find “the truth” because she is there, the whole time, every second.

There are things that are so close, that we don´t see them. Like the Earth herself.

800px-BlueMarble-2001-2002
I can see you.

Maybe, as Edgar Mitchell says in the movie, when we finish all the things that we must and have to do, we can take a moment to look outside and think about what we see, what we are and, instead of having questions, just open ourselves into that observation.

Maybe, being open is an answer.

What do you think?

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Interconnection. Samadhi.

Please check the other movies that Planetary Collective have done since 2011 when they started the project. Both of them (“Unsual Choices” and a movie about the artist-calligrapher Tashi Manoox), will leave you with a feeling that there are many beautiful things in life. That changes are welcome and that feeling connected with the others, with the Earth, with your own inner self, seem to work as a vortex that takes you in a deep and amazing trip. Because we already are in a ship. The most beautiful one.

I can´t wait to see Continuum!

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My dream from last night.

Playing with my friend Valeska,. Like in the dream!
Playing with my friend Valeska. Like in the dream!

Last night I dreamt that I was in Rishikesh with my lovely friends Rebeca and Valeska. We were walking on the crazy streets close to the Ganges river. We were happy! The city was full of life and we walked there enjoying each other and everything around us. We walked until the sun came down over the horizon…

Suddenly, many planes started to flight over the city. It was noisy and everyone became alert.   From the airplanes small bombs began to drop. Thousands of them.

In the earth, there was no more than half a meter between two bombs… It was full of them, there was nowhere to run.

Silence captured all.

“Wow, this is crazy. I will die with my friends in a bombing in Rishikesh”. I thought.

Finally, the bombs began to explode.

And they were no bombs, THEY WERE FIREWORKS!

There was nothing to be afraid of!
There was nothing to be afraid of!

Dreams are very important for me.

I wrote my dreams for about two years “training” myself to remember and analyze them. All of this that I´m living now started because of a dream: I decided to leave university and find a good yoga teacher training after an amazing dream I had.

During the last year I haven´t dream so much and for me that was sad. At the same time, inside of me, I knew that dreams would return… Last night´s dream was perfect.

There are many things that look like bombs in my life right now. I feel threatened.

I have the feeling that this can be like the work you have to do in a mine. There´s no other choice:

I will detonate all the bombs to find that treasure hidden inside.

A treasure that´s from myself, to myself.

My bombs about to explode!
My bombs about to explode!

In or Out?

The other day I read:

“Don’t know why you are always expecting a good work-out when you come to the class. I am really sorry to disappoint you but you should know that yoga is actually a work-in!!!”

This quote is from Prashant Iyengar, Guruji´s son, who is changing and breaking the concepts about yoga to everyone who comes into the RIMYI institute in Pune.

The quote left me thinking and wondering: What is the most important thing you have learnt trough yoga?

Is it to be able to touch the floor with extended legs? Or maybe you were able to developed arm strength after many chaturangas?

I was reading the notebook I took with me to India and that I filled out during the trip with all the information, recipes, notes, quotes and classes that I heard and saw during those months and I found that it´s just now, in this moment, a year and half later, that I´m starting to understand parts of what I heard those days.

Funny, isn´t it?

Notebook full of secrets
Notebook full of secrets : )

During these days where everything goes super duper fast (if not instant) it seems that the velocity required to learn something must also be in that speedy rhythm that comes from the outside.

The more you learn, the more you know, the more things you can achieve.

I can make a list of all the different actions required in a good Tadasana / Mountain pose but, as a yoga instructor, am I able to judge which one of my students have a better mind-body-soul balance?

What does that balance means after all?

As my own teachers did with me, they taught me the actions needed to be able to do every asana / posture but I was there, developing my own body awareness.

Today I have realized, again, in a deeper level, how is that body awareness is never just body awareness.

Is not that obvious as it sounds.

Awareness. (Photo taken from High Intelligence Office)
Awareness. (Photo taken from High Intelligence Office)

During the last few weeks I´ve been teaching mainly sporty people: skiers, climbers and runners. They “live of” their bodies in a similar way than me but, at the same time, is a very different approach to it.

At the beginning they really want to have what Prashantji said: a “workout” practice. The second intention, when they have one, is to be more flexible (because we know what happens when you´re just strong: you break yourself).

They are really looking for a specific product containing in the practice: flexibility, longevity, space, strength, sweat, etc.

But what happens is magic: Off course they sometimes get that what they want (flexibility for sure but the truth is that my classes don´t look like a workout at all) but, regardless what the first intention was, they get something more important. I really like to think that they get something that they were searching unconsciously: They find a space where they meet themselves.

At the beginning you don´t understand very much what is happening but you can feel it: Something is changing. Maybe, as me at the beginning, they can say: Oh, that was so good! Or: I feel peaceful, I feel silent, My body is so relaxed!

Maybe, just as myself, in some years they will discover that they now have the key to their own internal treasure.

And now they are the owners of a treasure that goes beyond any physical posture.

Work-IN
Work-IN

Short review of: “The Science of Yoga: The Risks and Rewards”

The Science of Yoga. The Book.
The Science of Yoga. The Book.

I already wrote something about this book written by William J. Broad, who is a Pulitzer prize winner, journalist/writer and an experienced yoga practitioner.

The book is very precise putting science first and from there it explained to us what and how yoga is doing what it does. All the good -and bad- sensations, the relaxation and the “connection feeling”, have a physical/chemical reason behind it and it was really interesting for me to know more about the different studies and investigations that had and have been taking place around the subject.

It´s obvious that the author has experienced many of the benefits of the practice. But he has many questions and they motivated him to write the book to be able to share what science knows about the practice and to show us that we have a long way in front of us on this matter.

A few fast ideas that came to me during/after reading the book:

–       I felt motivated to learn more about the origins of the yoga practice and how it evolved from “an obscure cult steeped in magic and eroticism” to what we are doing today.

–       What an interesting re-interpretation of the Hatha Yoga concept !

–       I am quite more optimistic about the “injuries” subject. The author really wants to scare people and, from my experience things are not that bad. But the truth is that a practice guided for inexperienced people can be really risky. As my master, paraphrasing Guruji, says: Yoga can show you the nectar of life but, in the wrong hands, it can also show you the poison.

–       It´s scientifically proved that yoga keep us young! (pag. 43-44)

–       Yoga is not an aerobic workout by itself, you can make it aerobic: “The more aerobic you make yoga, the less improvement you´ll see in those other areas.” (Relaxation, concentration, reducing fatigue and pain and others)

–       Yoga, pranayama and other breathing techniques does not increase the amount of oxygen in the blood.

–       I´m really proud to be a certified Iyengar yoga teacher. Guruji´s work is really close to science even though at the beginning “only” his heart and intuition were guiding him. Today his work and approach to the practice is illuminating it in a very deep and incomparable way.

I can´t say that I liked the book (but I guess that´s what happened with science, you don´t need to like it, the information is there telling you how the things are) despite that, from my point of view, the book is a MUST for yoga teachers and practitioners. It has a really good intention behind it: make yoga more professional and safe.

It´s not that negative after all:

“Western science tends to view the body as a fixed thing with unchanging components and functions. But yoga starts from a different premise. It sees a lump of clay. The body in this view is awaiting the application of skilled hands.”

hands-potter-wheel
“We are the clay”.

HERE you have another interesting article written by Broad about how the practice is different for men and women. He talks about the different approach that guys vs girls have to the practice and how this makes them an easy target for specefic -and sometimes more serious- injuries.

 

Savasana.

Guruji in savasa, photo from Light on Yoga.
Guruji in savasa, photo from Light on Yoga.

Yoga helps us to connect ourselves with a place of calm and silence inside of us.

Yoga is teaching us to be relaxed, to let go the tension even when we are in the middle of the big challenge that any asana represent. After that, we can let go the tension almost enywhere.

Yoga, in a beautiful and sometimes mysterious way, makes us feel the connection between our bodies, minds and souls. If we go beyond that, the practice shows us the connection between ourselves and the others around us, ending with all the polarities, dualities and multiplicities seen by our eyes.

But, what happened when we close our eyes and let everything go?

Go inwards.
Go inwards.

In savasana (corpse pose) we find an opportunity to explore the full potential of the yoga practice: calm, silence, quietness, relaxation, connection, union, mind and body discipline; our body showing our mind something different: stillness.

Body AND Mind.

Even when “yoga is not an intellectual game” as Guruji says.

I found THIS very beautiful post about savasana. In my own practice I´m exploring the posture and I found this article very inspiring and precise.

Good savasana for all!