Here's Brazilian model & actress practicing with her teacher , Cristovao de Oliveira , not with a personal trainer , hehe. And for those who think Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga , running & lifting weights are all interchangeable work outs , here's a quote from AshtangaYoga.info on TRISTANA : When movement & breath fuse together , the energy carries the body seemingly effortlessly and focus moves from the interior to the exterior, we reach TRISTANA. Or through vinyasa , banda & drishti we achieve the SPIRITUAL dimension in Ashtanga yoga practice.
The Maha-Mantra : Hare Krishna , Hare Krishna , Krishna Krishna , Hare Hare Hare Rama , Hare Rama , Rama Rama Hare Hare
In Sanskrit , "man" means mind & "tra" means freeing. So a mantra is a combination of transcendental sounds that free our mind from anxiety.
The name Krishna means "the All-Attractive One", the name "Rama" means "the All Pleasing one" , and the name Hare is an address to the Lord's Internal Energy. So the Maha-Mantra means "O All Attractive , All Pleasing Lord , O energy of the Lord, please engage me in Your devotional service."
Five centuries ago , while spreading the Maha- Mantra throughout India , Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu prayed , " O Supreme Lord , in your names You have invested all of your transcendental energies. "
The transcendental sound vibration which is established by the chanting of this Maha-Mantra is the sublime method for reviving our original , natural God consciousness. This chanting is enacted from the spiritual platform.
By practical experience , one can perceive that by chanting this Maha-Mantra , one can at once live transcendental ecstasy , surpassing all lower levels of consciousness , namely , sensual , mental & intellectual.
Thank you Madison Back from Conde' Nast for sending the link this morning to Adam Levine's feature in the December issue of DETAILS Magazine.
I'm pretty grateful for its timing on the eve of Thanksgiving as it is a great rebuttal of that "vapid " NY Times feature from my previous post.
Here are some details / excerpts from the article :
" Living the plugged-in celebrity life in Los Angeles, Levine was aware of the yoga scene but initially kept his distance, turned off by what he calls "the cheesy clichés."
But he began to worry that his gym routine was a dead end, hurting more than it helped: "Weights made my neck thick, and I would be like, 'I'm turning into a monster!' As he grew increasingly frustrated by lower-back pain and tight hips and hamstrings, he decided to give yoga a try.
That was five years ago, and Levine hasn't lifted a weight or entered a gym since. "Yoga takes what you have and molds and sculpts it, which is a much more natural way to look and feel," he says.
Credit Levine with a refreshing candor about the aesthetic payoff: "I don't like how people bullshit about how yoga is not about vanity."
Not that he doesn't appreciate the spiritual benefits—Levine sees his routines as a therapeutic antidote to the distortions of his career. "Playing a show before thousands of people is a highly unnatural state," he says, "and when I get on the mat to do an hour of yoga before the show, I come out physically relaxed."
So for someone who "moves like Jagger " , he does mention the spiritual aspect of the practice. And for those who have walked this road before , this is the crucial juncture where you can opt to take the proverbial higher road. Let's be thankful ! Hari Om -
I finally got my feet to cross together in Supta Kurmasana with Lila's help this weekend.
Just like " La Tortuga " the turtle after which this asana is named after , slow & steady means progress. It was not the ability to approximate the pose that I am enthused about .
It was the feeling of PRATYAHARA aka " the work-in " that I experienced while withdrawn inside it. Just like a turtle ensconsced in its shell. More eneveloping & deeper tham Karnapidasana.
Lila Padma Devi Dasi also goes by the name of Loren Russo. And she is mentioned in today's article in the NY Times wherein the writer finds her new guru in a personal trainer. The " Work-Out " vs. the " Work-In ".
There are some truths in the article. I agree with her that practicing Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga on a regular / daily basis is not for those with a busy professional schedule. I can attest to that. I don't agree with her one faceted description of Eddie Stern as being a traditional teacher with a celebrity student base. That's one component of the equation. She should have mentioned Eddie's deep commitment to the Broome Street Temple & the Deities enshrined there.
But then again , this article reeks of the superficiality of what Yoga , & even some Ashtangis are all about here in the US of A.
It is eating too much that gets you fat , not Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga. Ask a sadhu or swami who only eats 1 meal a day ( if ever ) if they go to a trainer to stay thin. Stuck on the lower rungs of the Ashtanga Yoga ladder she is.
Ishvara / Krishna really doesn't care what size Lululemon pants you wear.
Here is NYC based teacher David Regelin ( Pure Yoga East & Katonah Yoga ) flowing very effortlessly in asana. I've always felt that I am going to take my time in the Primary Series until I have honed it into a beautiful offering & moving meditation. No jerky movements, thuds or crashes. No external or internal pain.
You will know Lila is at Omkar108 once you see her car with the image of Radha-Krishna on the back windshield in the lot.
I got to attend her 10:00 AM class at the shala this morning. It was beautiful as she took care of all of us who had shown up to practice , from Fernando , who still has to learn the basic asanas of the primary , to the woman who was really flowing so smoothly in her second series.
She has been assisting Jorgen at his Sunday Mysore classes as well. He introduced me to her at New Dwarka Dham last Govardhan puja . And that is where I learned she was a full-on bhaktin or devotee ; making the move from Miami to live in an apartment near the LA temple in order to have full association & rasa of the local Vaisnava community. Ki Jay !
I also got to introduce her to Maharaja prior to artik last Sunday evening. She decribed us as that rare breed , bhaktas who also practice Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga. Not too much of a stretch , as Ashtanga Vinyasa does ultimately lead to Ishvara Samadhi -
They are a great resource for inspiration & imagery.
Michael is an Ashtanga teacher in Kingston , Ontario . I had to post his image & thoughts on the South Indian thali from Udupi Palace. It was making me crave for Saravanaa Bhavan NYC's " Business Thali ".
" One of my favorite things to eat after practicing and teaching all morning is a South Indian thali. It's way more food than I can eat , especially after eating iddly & vadda too ! This is a thali from my favorite Indian restaurant outside of India : The Udupi Palace. If you have one near you , GO THERE ! "
I've been to The Udupi Palace in the Mission , SFO & it did not disappoint.
Wealth advisor ( Abacus Wealth ) and author (It's Not About The Money) Brent Kessel shows a few minutes of his personal Ashtanga Yoga Practice. I had attended his book signing a couple of years back in Sta. Monica. As per my Ashtanga classmate Darius G. , it looks like they will be combining forces soon. Jai !
Via Govinda Kai is this vid of Led Intermediate Class in Mysore. You can hear Sharath counting during Sirsasana. I've mirrored this post on the new MahaMondo Tumblr. Still tinkering with it but the ability to post images taken with my iPhone should be fun.