For the forth time this week, I’ve been denied engaging actively with my body. The universe is nothing short of blatant in telling me to back off asana practice for now, as much as my preferentially attached mind wants to hit the mat and engage with the physical. Taking from Pema ChÅdron’s analogy, I have had an itch (to practice asana), and my mindfulness practice has been becoming aware of that, acknowledging it, and staying with it without scratching. Instead, I’ve surrendered to letting this path unfold.
Today I attended Zhenja’s 4 hour workshop for teachers with the theme of Puja, assuming for there would be an aspect of asana practice as I heard the previous weekends’ workshops with Zhenja were quite asana intensive. Instead, it was a four hour exploration of the concept of puja and the Anusara method for creating puja in a class. It was quite interesting to gain insight into this style of yoga with such a structured framework and language of its own, and valuable as an exercise for creating focus, rationale and sequencing relevant to a class’ esoteric focus.
The best part of the workshop was Zhenja herself. Intelligent, down to earth, authentic and energetic, Zhenja was present throughout the entire workshop as an approachable, passionate, inquisitive yogi, ambassador to the Anusara method and disciple of Jon Friend. There was no posturing, just respect and palpable love. Even towards the end when energy began to drop, Zhenja made her way around to the smaller groups to help regain the focus.
Meanwhile, my experience of Anusara yoga continues to unfold. I’m challenged by the shiny, contemporary packaging of the ancient teachings and practicing reserving judgement…after all, these newer methods are devised in part to articulate the vastness of the history and teachings of yoga in a more approachable way. Watch this space….and tomorrow, the 29the Day of the Yoga Challenge, holds a wild card; let’s see where the practice and the challenge lead me…