Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Meditation: Yes, I sat today. What is really strange: I start sweating. It is rather difficult for me to sweat, even when I do Ashtanga. But when I sit I start sweating rather fast. Strange. I write post after post when I sit. OK, it is as it is. I don't know what to do, when sitting. I breath, sometimes it is udjiaj breathing. I still have to find out what exactly I will do, when I sit. I already see me in a bookstore, buying the classic by Suzuki - Zen mind, beginner's mind. Ha. Then I will know what to do. (Probably?) Let's see. A new book is never a wrong idea.
Ashtanga: It was good, only the first surya namaskaras, perhaps the second, too, were stiff. I already started thinking that it would become a horrible practice, but this was not the case. It was good. Led class was piano yesterday, body was soft, but not overstretched and still recovered. I even lifted my body up into urdhva dhanurasana. And I was very proud because of this.
I look out of the window: the sun is shining. Wonderful.
Monday, July 30, 2007
We went till ardha baddha padma paschimottanasana. That was it. I was glad. I still had power for my pose: urdhva dhanurasana.
I think I was good at it.
Shower, bed, that was it.
And then my beloved Ashtanga practice: It was a good one. Breath was deep, body bendy. I enjoyed it. I enjoyed my little body and the asanas. I even practiced urdhva dhanurasana today. I could lift up my body and the arms were almost straight. Oh, I was happy.
And now I will start my more conservative life: my accounting life.
Detachment, awareness this are the key words for today.
Sunday, July 29, 2007
I was the first who was up this morning. This was wonderful. This meant, time for meditation and time for Ashtanga.
I feared that it would be difficult to sit in lotus position, because I had done no warming up, like some surya namaskaras. But I was able to sit 10 min in lotus with right leg first and 10 min left leg first. I was not distracted by the sitting pose. I moved forward and backwards a few times, my hands were in my lap. It's new to me and it's easy for me to get impatient. So, I won't judge what happens when I sit. I only told my stubborn part to tell the doubting and desperate part ("I cannot sit") not to listen and just to sit. It seems that my stubborn part is really strong. Now I sit and so I will do tomorrow.
The Ashtanga practice was good, I was bendy. It was a relief that it was one more time a good practice. Ohhhhhhh.
The pictures of the flowers are taken in my parents' garden.
After a while.
He: You cannot change. You are too old.
Me: I don't think so, but I asked me what I can do instead of nagging. I will have a lot to time then.
He (faster): Then you can give me a massage.
Saturday, July 28, 2007
What is the joy to go over and over the same dreams? Perhaps an answer: Nothing must change in reality or in the own behaviour. It is somehow fulfilling, but not really. I really ask me, if other people have as many daydreams as me.
But back to my title this morning:
I changed my morning schedule. After the cup of coffee and 1 morning page, I meditate now. 20 min. I did so today already. I sat in padmasana - 10 min right leg first, 10 min left leg first. I'm still astonished that I could do it. It was humble, but OK. I just sat on a bright thin cushion in lotus position. I changed the position of my arms from time to time. The goal is to sit still without movement, but I want to start modest. I observed how my body rounded and I straightened my back again to sit upright. After 5 min I looked the first time at my watch. It was not as awful as I thought it would be.
After meditating, I practice now:
I practiced today and it was difficult without any reason. 70 min I was on my mat, I needed a lot of breaks. Even now after the practice, I sit here and I ask myself. WHY? WHY was it so hard today.
Oh I remember: let go, let fly away the thoughts about the bad practice is the best. Those circling thoughts about a bad practice lead to nothing.
Chores are waiting, I have to shower and then we will head to my parents: to be aware there, that's the practice there.
Friday, July 27, 2007
I observe that my mood is not the best, but I observe it and I'm rather detached. At least this is a little progress.
Tomorrow after practice we will see my parents. We will stay at B. over the weekend. Guess I won't be able to blog. It's a pity. I will get my favourite food and my mother will make some nice pictures of me doing yoga. This is wonderful. And now we will go out, we will sit in the sun for a while somewhere outside.
Soon I have to wake up my bf. It was his idea to have breakfast together in the morning in the nice little cafe, that I found lately, but this does not mean that he likes to get up. I give him another 10 min. As he does not use any make-up he is ready within 20 min: shaving, shower, jumping in clothes. That's it.
Thursday, July 26, 2007
And then E. asked me: Would you like to have breakfast tomorrow morning with me somewhere?
I saw his doubt in his eyes, that I would say yes. He knows how important my yoga is in the morning. Spontaneously I said:" yes. "
"Yes, but you must take a picture of me in a yoga pose, for my readers." He agreed. Let's see what we manage tomorrow morning.
I deserve a moon day, do I?
I had a very intensive practice. I felt the edges, a sweet pain. I went on, sweated, felt how wonderful it is to stretch, to use the muscles.
Every asana is accompanied with different feelings. It's life that happens on the mat.
I went deep into upward dog. It's a challenge.
I feel so good.
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
I'm not in hope.
But when B. is still in hope, I have a bit hope, too, that urdhva dhanurasana will happen this summer.
Body was bendy, very bendy, mind was travelling. No wander, after a working day, where I have to concentrate all the time.
An Ashtangi next to me struggled with one of the mari asanas.
I had good advice: You are not learning the asana, you are learning patience now.
In the meantime I have profound Ashtanga knowledge. :)
Yes, the pain as well is so helpful. In triang mukka eka pada paschimotanasana I hold my wrists now. On the right side it is much easier than on the left side, but I can do it. It hurts, but this brings me in the here and now. Inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale.
Body was very bendy this morning. Somehow I forgot to eat yesterday evening. I just forgot it.
This is always good for an Ashanga practice.
It was a wonderful practice: flow, breath, the asanas, I loved it.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Monday, July 23, 2007
According to C.K. it gets easier after 10 years, but I guess then you are used to how it is and ever was - a challenging practice.
I practiced. In the morning I think that my joints are somehow swollen. I'm aware of it but I don't give it too much attention. I focus on the breath - hahaha.
With each surya namaskara, with each single asana it got easier. And at the end I thought, now I could start from the very beginning, now it is pure fun, but the time, the time....
Urdhva dhanurasana: I only did a bridge - a bridge for a bitch. (I only write this because of the rhyme :))
I feel good, like every morning. Sun is even shining.
Exercise of the day: to live without judging anything, not even myself.
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Time is a challenge for me, a big challenge. It runs through my fingers.
Better planning, more discipline, setting smart priorities - will this help???
In our times, never ever everything is done. We live in an overload of things to read, people to contact, programmes to watch, exercises to do, things to buy. It's a never ending story.
I will create time again, 15 minutes every day where I do nothing (no yoga either). I will only try to listen to my little inner voice and relax. 15 minutes. Perhaps these 15 minutes give me back the feeling that I have time. I'm curious. To spend time in order to get it, will this work?
It's getting always worse: I already start quoting myself: Practice was good, but frustration was not good.
Why is frustration not good?????
The answer: it is not better or worse than other feelings like boredom and happiness and anger and.....
It is pure energy. Today's frustration led to the thoughts: what can I improve, it gave me the idea to take a strap in order to improve urdhva dhanurasana. That's good. Not the feeling is bad, what I make out of it is important. Do I add more frustration, or do I look at it and let it go finally?
The goal is going from judging to observing.
To live an interesting life and not a limiting life is to experience different feelings, to eat different food, to see different places, to love different men within a lifetime.
In this spirit: enjoy your weekend.
Sweaty as I was I had my breakfast. 2 slices of sunflower bread, vegan margarine, mirabel jam and another cup of black coffee.
On Sundays I eat something different than on working days. On working days it is my banana with soy yogurt. Today it was a sinful jam sandwich.
My favourite movie was playing: if I were 2 kg lighter, my yoga would be better.
What comes next:
I will have to write a to do list: chores must be done, accounting must be done.
I want to be good at yoga.
Discontent today. Because of the last pictures?
The pictures give me feed back, they are a learning tool, but they can also be frustrating.
Practice was probably rather good, but I felt frustrated. But nothing can stop me. I practiced. Frustrated or not, it is of minor importance. I observe it and think: go away frustration, I don't need you.
In uttanasana my head touched the legs. This I wanted to improve after the last pictures. Probably my back was rounded. Ashtangi theory does not require perfection, but flow.
I felt resistance when I considered doing urdhva dhanurasana before the closing sequence. I took a strap around my legs, just above the knees. I wanted to keep my feet parallel. I could feel how my legs drifted apart. Today they couldn't, because of the strap. But it had another consequence. It was more difficult to lift up. The upper chest had to open more, what was still not possible. I tried it. I cannot do more. Can I do more?????
Pincha mayurasana: I develop a feeling for this pose. For a few breath I could hold it. Thank you wardrobe, you give me the courage to do this pose.
Yes, good that I practiced, not good that I'm not content with a rather good practice.
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Yes, dark, I know. I'm shocked. I always thought that my feet were parallel, but they are not. Elbows are not straight either. When I look at this picture, I know that I'm still far away from dropping down from standing position.
Practice, practice, practice.
I did all the asanas. Between the poses I needed a break. I even sat down on my sofa in the beginning of the practice. Then I took the break on the mat. I don't care. It was intensive, I could stretch my body easily today. I even managed it to bring my legs through my arms without touching the floor when I tried to jump back.
My body was perfect today and the mind didn't disturb me with self-talk. I was too tired for a conversation.
And now I go to bed again. Bf is still in bed. I must hug him.
What else: Got a letter from the landlord. She wants to see my home. I don't like it, now I have to clean. I will tell her that she has to take off her shoes in case she wants to walk around. Awful. Always something new.
My bf came and asked me: What do you fear? Me: I fear, that one day I will be old and poor. He was somehow offended. I'm extroverted, he is introverted. He knows, that I have always an answer, always something to say. And this is my fear: I fear that one day I will be old and poor, as stupid as this fear might be.
It is peace at home again. The rain was too good. A perfect performance.
Tracy, I like you. You are such a loving person. I hope, that we will meet some day. It will happen.
Friday, July 20, 2007
Why this post? On movies? On daydreams?
I read, that it can be an addiction to avoid the here and now by daydreaming. Daydreaming helps to flee from the here and now (the only reality).
Wishful thinking movies:
I want to loose 1 or better 2 kg (4 pounds). This is my absolute favourite movie, especially when I'm eating and when I'm full. Then I go on eating, dreaming that I want to be thinner. I bothered my readers with this movie already, but I also talk about it. It is one of my favourite movies. I want to be thinner. Most of the time people say: but you are so thin already. But I want to be thinner.
Erotic movies: Yes, I have them, too. I call them erotic, because I need a story. Not a love story, but a story. I am a woman. Also a possibility to flee from what is in the here and now.
And all this movies serve to avoid the here and now. Why do I not yet listen to the rain. Why do I sit her dreaming, writing?
Rain, where are you? It is still here. I have to stop writing. The rain, is it waiting - for me?
I can still hear the rain - how nice.
He is not at all interested in me. Not at all. He does not even know what is important to me.
I will change my password without letting him know it.
We were out in the Greece restaurant, I ate and drank too much. Yes, he pays, but when we want to have a larger flat, he wants to make 50/50, even though I have no working contract and till now no regular income. I cannot compete with him on monetary issues. It is not possible. So nothing will change.
It's not important for me to eat in restaurants. This makes me fat.Yes my business plans are modest, but everything starts modest. I don't want to give up only because it is not successful from the very beginning on.
Nothing is lost yet. I wrote an email to the Ebay-seller. Unfortunately I cannot make a wire transfer now.
No, I didn't like to share the dessert this evening. I ate my own dessert, even though I was full, really full. Oh, am I childish.
What did I write yesterday? garbha pindasana: stupid pose, average, I will laugh about it. Hahhhhhhahahaha.
I will go on with my blog - yoga and money. It is so important.
Who is cleaning the bathroom and the toilet now, how is it??????? It is me.
What did I learn from my smart books: Don't be so addicted to think that the world must be nice.
The misery does not end. It does not.
What a stupid post. Let me be stupid tonight. I know that I live in a paradise and that I am a damned pampered child.
There was a loud thunder and then the rain started, when I did my first surya namaskara a. I couldn't here my breath anymore because of the heavy rain falling on the roofs. Now it is quite again, only the birds are singing (and I live in the middle of a city). A good start.
It's interesting to see how the asanas influence each other. Since I try urdhva dhanurasana, which means I try to open my upper chest, Utkatasana got better. Yes, utkatasana. I bow my legs more and I stretch my arms to the sky. But the arms build a straight line with the body - at least I think they do.
I did urdhva dhanurasana: It was bad. I could scarcely lift myself up. But I wanted to indicate it at least. My body shall know that I won't give in. This pose is my summer pose this year.
No time for garbha pindasana this morning, but I must try Tiff's hint. Can it be that I forget the bandhas in that pose?
The body feels good, I feel good and I'm happy that it is Friday.
Thursday, July 19, 2007
But please have a look at this pose. It's an innocent pose, not beautiful. Yogis not often show themselves in this pose, it is too less to show off. It is not a difficult pose, it does not look very nice, it's average.
And this pose makes me angry. I give such a stupid pose the power to make me angry. Not from now on anymore. I will laugh about it.
But I wanted to say something else.
Aren't all the events and people, colleagues like pindasana? stupid, average, not even difficult, boring, innocent. From now on, if I get angry and I think it is an event or a person that makes me angry I will think: you are pindasana.
And this is exactly a new quality that I experience doing my daily Ashtanga practice. I observe feelings, different feelings. I see how different poses provoke different feelings. I mean the poses are innocent. I relate to them. Ashtanga yoga becomes more than a physical exercise.
Pindasana makes me angry.
Urdhva dhanurasana shows me how ambitious I can be.
Supta kurmasana makes me desperate.
Doing kukkutasana I think I'm a bit crazy and so on.
All these innocent asanas. I give them so much power. But I regain my power. This could be funny to be ambitious doing garbha pindasana, to be desperate doing halasana.
I tried to get back into urdhva dhanurasana. But one more time I felt that I'm still far away from it. There is fear that I will fall on my head. Everybody who learned dropping back into urdhva dhanurasana, told me that he/she fell on the head. Everybody assured me that this is not that awful. But I don't want to fall on my head. Straight arms are the secret. The time will come where I have the courage. There are days of adventure in my life and then I will drop back as if it is nothing, as if I have done nothing else in my life so far than dropping back into urdhva dhanurasana.
But till this will happen, I will exercise.
Wednesday already. What happens at work? It is not that important, but pleasant. I think that my colleagues start liking me. They come and talk with me, share their lives with me. It's a good atmosphere at work.
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Must admit - it took me a while to find my own rhythm. The air was humid, hot.
The one man could jump through and back, so easily and elegantly, what acknowledged my opinion that advanced students are those who have good vinyasas. So beautiful bodies gathered on mats and had a body party. That was it today. I worked on my urdhva dhanurasana and B. helped me in supta kurmasana, which was rather good today, too. The heat and the group helped. Haha.
Curious as I am, I asked the guys after practice where they came from. At least one man looked rather Asian. 2 of them live in Bangkok. They practice daily. It was not necessary to tell me this, I could see it.
What a night. It's such a gift that we all have bodies. What a pleasure this is.
I was experimental when I came to bujapidasana. I tried to jump back from tittibasana.
I showed willpower and lifted me up three times into urdhva dhanurasana.
I was patient with myself and I could enjoy my practice. It was not sloppy, but it wasn't too ambitious either - the perfect mixture of pushing the edges a little bit further, feeling the pain, but still able to enjoy it.
To go through the day, how I went through my practice would be great. I will observe it.
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
When there are so many practices and so many different feelings the single practice is of minor importance. Every practice is new, so is every day.
That 's what I learn from my daily practice. I forget events faster than I used to. Every day is fresh. Yesterday is of minor importance, there is another day another practice waiting to be lived and experienced.
This is likely to be experienced only by a daily practice. When I practice 2 or 3 times a week other issues come up. It is more the question of practicing at all or to skip it.
Beside the asanas, my daily practice teaches me detachment. This is really something for life.
With a curious mind and a hungry stomach I will go to the beer garden with my difficult bf, when he comes home. Today I allow him only 1 beer. This is enough for him today. Everything is prepared. After work I bought bread, tomatoes, cherries, and, and, and. If he won't be on time he gets water (and no beer at all) like me.
At 5:30 I woke up without alarm clock. And I got up, wrote my journal, drank 2 cups of coffee. I loved the cold shower. For a moment or so I was in the here and now.
To sit safely in my room in front of the balcony pleased me. The air is still fresh. But the day is likely to become a summer day, with thunder and storm in the evening. The weather is an adequate metaphor for life, isn't it.
It's a subtle addiction of most of the people here on earth to expect that life must be nice. If it is not nice, people start dreaming, drinking and they forget that life can only be lived in the here and now.
No expectations anymore, no illusions - my yoga practice isn't nice everyday either - but this doesn't mean that I don't love it. I love it.
Monday, July 16, 2007
Boyfriend picked me up. A wonderful evening ended in disaster. It's almost midnight. All my good philosophy - does it help? I don't know. At the moment - now - I'm fed up with everything. Tomorrow will be my moonday. This means I plan 3 surya namaskaras.
Very dark night. Very dark.
Then I had the idea to tell me: take it easy.
This was the turning point. I went on (with not so much ambition). And it was a good meditative practice (with no highlights, no real improvements), but a really nice practice.
I lifted myself up into urdhva dhanurasana three times. Then I pretended going back from standing position, only to get used to it. I'm sure that urdhva dhanurasana won't happen in the morning. The body is too stiff in the morning. What I can do is trying to do the pose.
Then I had the shower, prepared my breakfast (banana with soy-yogurt and almonds). I sat down in front of the balcony and enjoyed consciously my delicious breakfast, the fresh air, the sun, that was still soft. During the day she will be burning again according to the weather report. 10 minutes ago the sun was so pleasant that it was a pure pleasure to sit in front of my balcony. To be awaken so early can be very nice.
Bf is back again. He is still sleeping. Soon I will wake him up the second time. I like it to have him around me.
Sunday, July 15, 2007
"What is this?", is the question to be asked during meditation and during the day. No judging, asking "what is this?", is the transforming task.
Practice is about turning away from constantly seeking comfort and trying to avoid pain?
I clearly see how interesting it would be for me to meditate. I even feel a certain urgency to finally do it. I have time now and the insight to do it, but I don't do it.
I fear to meditate like the devil the holy water. I mean, what can happen, what do I fear? What prevents me from doing it even though I think it would be good? I fear that I'm not able to do it, that I get again impatient, that I stop before the 5 (only 5 minutes) are over. I already have this experience. Most of the time I gave up (I didn't try to meditate very often). But this time can be different. I have to explore it. And I can learn not judging it when I stop again, because tomorrow is another day and I can sit again. Nothing is lost, when I stop.
Let's see what I can do today. I have the entire afternoon for me. Basic chores like vacuuming, doing the dishes, ironing are done already. I have no excuses anymore. 5 minutes should be doable as a starter. I even can sit in lotus position and I have a mala, only 5 minutes of my precious life sitting down, this must be doable. It's part of yoga.
The reward: not to live a substitute life anymore - one day.
1. Most of the authors (awakened or not) emphasize "awareness". Awareness is a practice with consequences. The here and now is waiting to be discovered. Only in the here and now life takes place. That's perhaps people speak about "awakening". Being in the future or the past means dreaming. Can be nice, but it's not the life that takes place. In the here and now happiness can be found. To be aware of what can be heard (songs of the birds), or seen (boyfriend, hahaha), or what can be felt (the wind on the naked skin) can really be very nice.
Even if it is not expressed in the Ashtanga books, awareness is what we practice on the mat. (Ashtanga books always show the series in the traditional way. Models change, text changes a bit, but that was it - boring after a while) When I 'm not in the here and now when I practice i.e. I forget asanas. This happens to me even after 4 years of practice. Balancing poses are difficult to perform while dreaming. I start wobbling. To listen to the breath is the most obvious task to take the practitioner in the here and now.
2. To be oneself: That's the next topic all the authors (awakened or not) mention. To get rid of ideologies, education, belief systems, attachments in general and so on in order to discover the Self. How to become oneself? This is the question. Where are the exercises, the practices? Is it meditation? Is it again practicing awareness? Awareness certainly helps to discover wrong identifications or identifications in general. Does Ashtanga yoga help me to become myself?
One thing is noticed: In the beginning most important thing for me was to be able to do some asanas (I had favourite asanas and I still have favourite ones). I WANTED to be able to do ardha baddha paschimottanasana. Now I want to bring my leg behind the head. But I think you must only practice long enough other thoughts come up. How do I approach to the asanas that seems not doable, is such another thought. Disciplined is learned. The body is experienced in another way. I know that alcohol impairs my practice, too much food as well. Has this all something to do with myself? I don't know.
Oh, how I wish to do urdhva dhanurasana? Will it happen this summer?
I practiced in the here and now.
After the standing poses with the CD by Sharath, I practiced second series. So slow was my practice, so intensive.
Supta vajrasana: I was so close to the floor with my head like never before and I had the power to go up the same way I went down, with the strength of my legs.
Leg was behind my head. I'm so glad that nobody sees me when I'm doing this pose. But this seems to be the beginning. After a while hopefully the pose looks more elegantly.
Patience is necessary. But I'm also sure that the edges must be searched. Otherwise there won't be progress. The pain must be endured. To feel the pain and to relax, to smile, that's what brings the progress. Only repetition of the same stuff every day without the effort to improve, will not bring much renewal.
I put effort into my practice, I was not over-zealous or cramped, but I wanted to push my limits a little bit more far away.
Goal for today: I want someone to take a picture while I'm doing virabadrasana b.
Saturday, July 14, 2007
Was I so tired? At 6 p.m. I laid on my bed for a little nap with all my clothes on. I thought of 1 hour sleeping or so. It is 10 now.
I missed the whole day.
On the picture is a Hare Krishna group. People were dancing and chanting in the middle of the street. The rhythm was very rousing. Picture is taking on my way home from my shopping spree downtown.
I wanted to read this afternoon.
I wanted someone to take a picture of me doing yoga at the Glypthotek.
I wanted to clean my rooms and what did I? I slept.
But I have the nice shoes for Tracy and the Indian kids and some more interesting books for me.
A double life: This afternoon I decided to start a double life. I got the idea from a book that was on writing. The author recommended a double life, which can also mean pretending being someone else in a blog and so on. I will not pretend to be someone else. Everyday I experience myself as someone knew. But I will write anonymously and probably German and English. I want to see how I express myself in German and I want to write more on other topics, too. The difficulties this afternoon were, that I didn't find a name for the new blog. A positive name would be good. But shall the name have to do something with the content of the blog? This might be better.
Other difficulties arose. I couldn't enable cookies and this is necessary in word press. Always technical issues.
I started with Sharath till mari b. Then I switched off the CD. I didn't need music or anything. I was so concentrated on my breath, my bandhas.
I need time to enter mari c and d. Hands reached each other, but the wrist is still far away. Important is that I could breathe easily in that asana.
Supta kurmasana: I removed the sticky mat. The sticky mat is very helpful for the standing poses. When doing kurmasana my feet must have the possibility to slide on the floor. This is not possible when the feet glue on that black sticky mat. I also did the easier variation of "supta kurmasana". I laid on my back and tried to take the legs behind the head. In that pose I can bring the legs behind the head. Hands can touch, but not bind. Sitting on the floor I cannot take my legs behind the head. It needs some time.
Urdhva dhanurasana: I think it is easier when I do the bridge first. To do all the forward bendings and then this demanding back bending is really almost a shock for the body. When I add the bridge before the wheel it is easier. I lifted the body even more with the hands under the back. Then I did the wheel. I did it. I was far away from my best performance. Then I stood up and bowed backwards as far as possible. I have to do this more often, when I want to be able to do it. One of my exercises is to circle the arms, this opens the chest as well.
A wonderful practice this morning. Not perfect, but I'm on my way. And soon I'll be on my way downtown.
Friday, July 13, 2007
I went home at 5. I just didn't like to go on working and concentrating on interest and loans. Batteries were empty. There are still a lot of papers on my desk. But I'm here now - at home, and I'm glad about it. I start thinking of my work again on Sunday evening or Monday morning. That's enough.
This is a boring post, I know. I only wanted to write a little bit.
Now I have to bring me on the right track again.
It's not so important that I was wobbling when I did the standing positions.
It's also not so important that I couldn't lift me up, not a tiny bit, to urdhva dhanurasana.
Not important is that I stopped after mari d and a short closing sequence.
I did the beginning with the CD by Sharath. After mari b I stopped it, because I need more time for the following maris. But that was it. I gave up after the maris.
After years of practice other wishes come up. Not only the "perfect" performance of an asana is the goal, but also the mental approach.
To accept what is, is important, not judging, detachment.
My practice is already over. I feel good, the weather is fine (cold and rainy). :)
Thursday, July 12, 2007
The email reached me in the right moment. B. wrote me. She will go to Italy with the night train at 9 p.m. Between her departure and work we still had time to meet for dinner in "our" Italian restaurant. It was a sinful evening with wine and my favourite noodles and a desert. We have so much to talk: job, men, accounting and so on.
On my way home I bought the yoga journal: the topic: how to build core strength. This is very important to me. And I fetched my book from the mail-box: At home in the muddy water by Ezra Bayda. This seems to be an excellent book.
By the way: the picture shows the building where I spend my days.
Shower now and then bed. I want to practice with Sharath tomorrow morning as my boyfriend won't be at home (sort of business trip).
I practiced second Ashtanga series and I feel so much better now. How strong I was today that I went on despite the "difficulties".
I suspect the cake and pommes and the rather intensive Mysore class yesterday, that it was so demanding today.
But what I see: sometimes it is not the asanas that needs attention, but the attitude. To step back, to observe, just doing it what is possible has to be learnt. To be content with what is, is so helpful.
Yesterday a colleague came to me and asked me, why I always wore sandals even though it was so cold. I think I must dress decent shoes today. My colleague might think I only have one pair of sandals. :) It's cold, but summertime. When I do not wear sandals now, when shall I wear it. I want to have it comfortable during working hours. Nevertheless appropriate shoes today. Haha.
I want to add a hint from yesterday's Mysore class. I shall try to stretch the legs when doing urdhva dhanurasana. This might help to open the chest. I will try this the next time. Today no urdhva dhanurasana was performed, but I visualize how I do it.
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
No practice this morning was a good exercise of detachment.
And then Mysore class this evening: B. has still the opinion, that I will be able to drop back from standing position into urdhva dhanurasana this summer. This gives me hope. I notice that I have less fear. But I have not the courage to do this pose alone. Patience, I will need patience and persistence.
I'm so glad that I have my practice. It helps me to develop a cool attitude to all the other "difficult" stuff that happens in my life. I have to sleep now. To sleep and to do yoga - that's it.
He: Oh, I fell asleep so late.
Me: But I did no yoga this morning. If I knew that you wouldn't get up, I would have practiced.
He: OK, then we'll have breakfast outside.
In half an hour I will wake up my sleeping bear again.
I can do some chores now, I have to take some papers to work as I will get a working contract for a year this week. The advantage: I get paid even when I'm ill. But I'm never ill. I'm happy that I'm so healthy.
It's a relaxing morning.
And this evening I will go to B. - Mysore class.
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Content, that I practiced. It's 6 o'clock in the morning and I practice this demanding Ashtanga series - this is something. And I remembered: after 10 years it gets easier.
Headstand gets better. I pull the shoulders away from the ears, I use the bandhas and I try to have a straight back. I feel very stable in that pose now.
Kapotasana: When my hands touch the wardrobe, I try to hold the pose a few breaths. I want to get used to that position.
Savasana: what a pleasure. My reward. Suddenly I noticed that I had done something. Body felt well and I was relaxed.
Monday, July 09, 2007
I'm refreshed after the shower and full of joy I'm looking forward to my morning practice on Tuesday. Backbendings are on the schedule tomorrow - second Ashtanga series.
Tralali, tralala, tralali, tralala.
Oh, yes the job is interesting, but it is soooo much work. What I did in the evening was very important for my colleagues tomorrow morning, who start earlier than me. I must get faster so that I do not have to work so many hours and I must learn to take breaks at the right moments. This will help me not to be so done in the evening.
The worst thing is, that my desk is still full with papers. And I cannot leave them there, I have to do something with them. Still so many questions, where I have to find an answer, a solution.
I filled in the form for the health insurance. That's good. And tomorrow I will call the landlord due to the water meter. At least I did some personal things.
Now I'm no more like a fresh salad leave. Chocolate and wine won't help either to refresh me.
But the shower, yeah, the shower.........
Body was so stiff. There is no explanation for it. I started with the practice. Oh, how stiff I was, how incredible difficult it was to do even the suryas.
I told myself: do one asana, then the next asana, then the next asana.
This helped me through the series and the body got softer and softer. I had no power for back bending, for urdhva dhanurasana today. I felt too weak to lift up my body. Headstand was performed and I had a rather good balance today.
Savasana was great. I could feel my blood running through my body.
If I could only remain on my mat the entire day.
I'm still tired. I'd rather stay in bed than to leave the house. It's rainy here.
Sunday, July 08, 2007
Yoga in the morning (home practice).
Yoga in the evening (Ashtanga led class).
Filling in and faxing the form to the health insurance (very important)
Calling the landlord: Broken water meter must be changed (very important).
Attitude: relaxed, one step follows the next step, nothing must be feared.
And he was right. We met C.K. (No sleep till Mysore) and her friends with the nice 2 boys downtown Munich. They are all so very nice people and we had a very entertaining afternoon in one of the cafes downtown.
It seems to be obvious that some of the Germans like to take a sun-bath naked. Walking through the English garden, our American friends saw a lot of naked people. I know that this is not allowed in America, but here nobody feels bothered. You are free to do what you like.
Of course yoga was a topic: After 10 years it gets easier, I learned from C.K. This encourages me. 4 years are already over. Haha. And I know now also how to use the Mala. The end of the mala wanders in direction to the body. When it is reached again with the fingers, the mala wanders the other way round again. I must try it. What a good idea to call me for a meeting.
C.K., I wish you a very nice trip to India. I'm very pleased that we met here in Munich. And I hope it was not the last time that we've met.
I forgot to take some pictures. So life was more exciting than documenting it.
There are so many variations of vinyasas:
It can be a simple sun salutation.
Jumping back from paschimotanasana the legs can be lifted straight, then folded and then brought back without touching the floor.
It's possible to lift the body when the legs are already crossed.
All these vinyasas build inner strength.
The vinyasa after supta kurmasana, where we go into tittibasana then bekasana and then chaturanga dandasana builds balance and strength. It is very demanding. Breath and bandhas are so important here.
We can go into navasana and then we can bring the legs somehow back.
When we want to go from adho mukha svanasana into a sitting position we can fly through the arms with straight legs or with crossed legs. Legs can be crossed first and before we set the body on the floor, legs can be stretched.
The vinyasas connect the asanas. In order to have an elegant practice, the vinyasas must be elegant.
In order to judge how long someone is practicing, look how the vinyasas are performed.
And I started breathing. This was the beginning of the second Ashtanga series. It's not always easy to start. I'm sure this was already mentioned more than once.
Also today I found a trick to bring me to the mat and to start practicing. This time it was that I told me only to breathe. I didn't imagine the entire practice, I only imagined how I breathed. This seemed to be a doable task. No, it was not my best practice ever today. The success this morning was that I did it. Slowly I performed one asana after the other, and the vinyasas were done, too.
There is not always a party on the mat, like in life. Sometimes it only has to be done and this was it today. It was done.
Happy now that I did it.
Utthita parsvattonasana: I'm not sure now, when I look at the picture, if my hips are really parallel. I will focus on that the next time. The goal is to touch the shin with the chin. I compared my picture with the picture in the book by Matthew Sweeney. It still takes some time. B., my teacher, recommends to round the back in order to reach the shin. This is allowed in Ashtanga. Perfection of the asanas is something for Iyengar students. Ashtangis concentrate on the flow and the breath and the bandhas and the dristhi. Perfect asanas is one of the last goals in the concept of Ashtanga. That's what I've heard.
How I like the computer era: I shall see C.K. (No sleep to Mysore) this afternoon. How exciting. Connecting via ashtangi.net, real meetings can happen. And it is a sunny day today. How nice.
Saturday, July 07, 2007
I want to practice one more time today. It's so good when the body is soft and bendy. That's what I want. No back bendings today. I practiced, even though it was difficult. There is fear that when I omit only one practice that it will be incredible difficult to start again.
Savasana was good at the end.
Somehow I feel overwhelmed. There is too much to do. I haven't accomplished everything at work. I discovered mistakes, that I made. Oh, oh, oh. Should relax. It's weekend now.
Friday, July 06, 2007
I'm glad that I was a bad listener. So I walked on my mat and I did what I wanted to do: 1 hour hardcore Ashtanga yoga.
Body was stiff, I don't know why. Thoughts during my practice: how can I improve my practice, how can I improve single asanas? I always want to improve something.
Urdhva dhanurasana was the most difficult asana. I lifted me up three times and each time it was better, but all attempts to do a bridge were far away from what I've already done.
However my practice was today, it was for me and only for me. Soon (to be precise - between 8:30 and 9) I start working and this is mostly for others.
After work I have to run to a grocery shop. We have a backyard party this night. Unfortunately it will be rather fresh here. We can only hope that it won't rain.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
It was enough work for today. The grocery shops had already closed when I reached home. In Germany the shops close at 8 sometimes at 8:30 in the evening.
Yes, a shower, a tea and some yoga poses. That's what I will do now. And tomorrow I shall see, what I can accomplish.
I had to cancel the meeting with B. That was sad.
Slowly I was today, slowly and tired, but I visited my mat.
Morning practice and evening practice are not in competition with each other. They support each other. The evening practice show me how far I can already go and give me a lot of motivation. On the other hand, these great evening experiences never would happen, when I didn't vex myself in the morning.
And it is the same with life and writing. There is no competition. They complete each other. My writing influences my life and my life influences my writing. To write reflects what I experience. I see the danger, that writing can absorb too much time. In my case: I'm not sure if I could have developed such a good daily yoga practice, if I hadn't written about it.
Now life is waiting:
I will wake up my boyfriend (with kisses), I will have breakfast, I will dress and then I will work, work, work. I hope that my friend B. accepts that we postpone our meeting to 8 p.m. I have to accomplish too many things at work. I will have to work longer.
Life I'm coming.
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
All the "difficult" asanas improved: mari d, supta kurmasana. urdhva dhanurasana. I
t was as if my body gave up resistance. I focused on the bandhas.
Oh the bandhas, so important.
And urdhva dhanurasana - today I think again that it can happen this summer that I drop back. Oh, please, let it happen.
Bed is waiting. Morning practice starts now.
I made a cup of coffee, wrote my journal and then I stepped on my mat. Practice was even good.
I have 1 hour in the morning, that means I have to omit some asanas. For the entire practice I need more time now. Perhaps it is that I hold the poses longer. But 1 hour is something.
Urdhva dhanurasana: I lifted me up 3 times and then I pretended to drop back from standing position.
I ask myself what could help me to drop back finally:
- to hold the position longer (not only one breath). Often after one breath I already give up.
- to repeat this pose more often (in the morning and in the evening)
- to build more leg muscles. Perhaps this morning I won't take the elevator, but the steps. I work in the fifth floor (American floor).
- during work, I could visualize how I do it. Haha (as if I have nothing to do at work)
- to bring the legs closer to the hands.
Next task this morning - a difficult one, but nice one. I have to wake up my boyfriend.
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
It was one of the evenings where everybody had the feeling: I want to say something, I have another funny story that matches to what you have just said, and now it's finally my turn to say something.
It was such a light evening with so much fun, even though it was the first time that I met the woman and the second time that I met the man. My boyfriend I know for 10 years now. Ohhhh.
It is later as planned now. Tomorrow I shall see how I feel. Now I feel great.
E. asked me to accompany him to a business dinner. He will pick me up soon and as I know me I will order again penne al'arrabiata, as we will be at an Italian restaurant.
Now I'm waiting, waiting, waiting, waiting.
Me: Give me a title for my blog entry.
He: The optimist.
I had something else in mind. I wanted to write: This practice will kill me one day.
I like the title the optimist better. I practiced half of second series today. I like back bending. To open the upper chest, to bring back the shoulders is in fact a very optimistic movement. I sweated, every 15 minutes I made an attempt to wake up my boyfriend. Jet lag still keeps him awake during the night and in the morning it's incredible hard for him to get up. But I managed even this. Back to yoga: urdhva dhanurasana was incredible difficult. I lifted me up three times, it was soooo hard. But I did it.
Yesterday I got an Email from an Ashtanga studio in Berlin: they offer now every morning Mysore classes from 6 o'clock on. What a luxury. But I have my home practice. That's something, too.
E: Cutie, do you make me a cup of coffee?
OK, I'll pamper him with a cup of coffee, but he gets used to such things so easily.
Monday, July 02, 2007
It was again a good idea to do yoga after work.
E. picked me up later at the studio. We went to the Schranne, had our favourite noodles, there, me penne al'arrabiata, he spaghetti. Red wine, water accompanied the meal. It was nice to chat a little bit, to hold hands.
He: Do you think we get fat now?
Me: I don't think so.
I was so thin already, but now my restaurant visits start again. To stay slim will be more difficult now. No chocolate tomorrow and only 200 gr salad. Hahhaha.
That was my practice this morning. I know that there will come times where I have more time. I want to add pranayama, but it is just not possible in the morning.
It's raining here and I have to fight for my working contract today.
And now I will wake up my dear boyfriend. Perhaps some kisses make him want to get up????
Sunday, July 01, 2007
Uthita hasta padangusthasana: When I lifted up my leg (straight of course :)), I touched my leg with my head. This was the first time that I did this. B. told us last time, that in Mysore they always say: TOUCH, TOUCH. So I touched today. Then I waggled. So what. I touched.
High spirits: It was so much fun today that I went on with the series after eka pada sirsasana. I tried all the other asanas, too. The most difficult asanas will be dwi pada sirsasana, karandavasana and perhaps tittibasana. (karandavasana was omitted, I mean what shall I do when I cannot hold pincha mayurasana very long?)
The mental challenge: Not to say, this pose is not possible for me. The poses are all possible, even for a person like me. Persistence, joy, repetition are the ingredients that will help.
Still a word about urdhva dhanurasana: it was incredible difficult today. I always think that after all the back bendings of the second series it should be easier to do this pose. It wasn't today. I won't give up. To accept that not every day is the same, to observe it and to go on, that's the right attitude. Oh, how preaching I'm today. I don't like it when I'm so.