We've hit that point, the part of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika where we learn about "posture." The word "Asana" means "seat" or "pose." Consider this; 3000 years ago people weren't sitting in chairs at desks or driving around in cars. They were squatting, sitting on the ground, moving along the earth on their own two feet and taking a seat wherever they needed.
In the Yoga Sutra we are taught "Sthira Sukham Asanam;" to take an easy, steady seat. The same is true in Hatha Yoga. In order to quiet our mind, slow our breath and focus inward, we must have steadiness of body. No matter what pose we choose to take, if that posture remains steady, easy and balanced, we will be able to maintain focus.
Tight walkers, slack-liners, acrobats, gymnasts, etc. all have the ability to remain balanced, steady and focused in order to maintain their pose. In Yoga, rather than posing to perform, we are posing to turn within.
As you practice, look not upon how your posture looks but, instead, look within and feel the pose change you.
Throughout the month of November we've been focusing on extension in our physical bodies and awareness inward in our energetic body. In previous dharma talks about the cakras I have always focused more upon what and where the cakras are. This month, my approach has been more so upon identifying the physical and energetic connections within ouselves.
Most of us experience physical dis-ease. There may be pain in our backs, shoulders, knees, etc. Sometimes, through a physical practice, these pains will gradually go away. However, there are times when the discomfort we are experiencing is an expression of an inner condition.
Each of our cakras aligns with a specific physical nervous plexus. The way in which we feel energetically will effect how we feel physically. Think about when you get stressed out. Energetically, you may at first feel driven and directed but, over time, you will begin to run out of energy. You'll begin to feel fatigue and eventually your body will become sick. You may get a cold or s stomach ache. Your energy body is sending you signals of it's dis-ease.
As humans, we tend to numb ourselves to avoid feeling our emotions and the imbalances in our energy bodies. We work too much, drink to much and spend too much time avoiding listening to ourselves. As we work this month through extension, we'll be focusing on ourselves to connect and identify within. We have to be willing to experience what we find and to allow.