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jimtarranyoga jimtarranyoga

552 posts   1511 followers   97 followings

Jim Tarran  Yoga teacher of 25 years, founder of the Vajrasati yoga school and teacher trainer. Classes, workshops and retreats.


Craving, yearning and desire express a feeling of lack ‘What I need I haven’t got’ and so reaching-out (upādāna) occurs beginning a self-fulfilling prophecy that cycles around from; craving, reaching out, disconnection and lack and on and on in a loop that is like a snake biting its own tail. It is, in part, this trapped cycle that the Sanskrit term saṃsāra describes.
As soon as we disconnecting from the mains or take the cup from our lips, it leaves us unplugged, un-resourced scrabbling around in our own personal stores which are; limited, partial and biased, to find information that might vaguely match the infinite, complicated and ever-changing (anitya) reality of this brand new moment.
Rather than personal stores of information that we accumulate as views and opinions about reality the yogin recognises this moment is the direct source of Knowledge. Like with the controversial process of extracting shale gas lodged in between rock strata the yogin simply uses methods that cause the inherent Knowing trapped in This Moment to burst through their own layers and trigger spontaneous response that arises in muscles, mind, speech and thought.
In this extraction of what is contained within This Nowness our thoughts feelings, actions become a conduit for what This Moment wants to say. This is expression emerges from a sense of essential unity and hence never acts out of personal self-interest or personal power over another – it is always open, compassionate and at peace.
This process may include a radical emptying out of oneself, allowing oneself to be eaten by The Moment. The sort of offering or giving of oneself that so often occurs spontaneously (sahaja) when a moment is suitably, perhaps even surprisingly and sometimes suddenly, intense; smelling a rose, feeling a yoga pose, suddenly catching a moment of intense beauty, sadness or joy can all serve to cause us to temporarily forget to run our programs leavingus empty enough to Know. (Extract from my recent article in Yoga Magazine). #yogamagazine

Yogic cleansing
The principle of cleansing is one of the central tenants of yoga; it is well resourced with techniques to facilitate this on many levels. Essentially, cleansing is aimed at the heart/mind and the different techniques used can be viewed as means to this end.

It therefore follows that the means should be applied according to what will take a particular person most effectively towards that aim. The nature of any journey depends on where you set off from. Many of the practices work on an archetypal/ritual level as well as on the more obvious level on which they manifest.

#Cleansing is an attempt to lighten the mind and cleanse it from its habits and compulsions or, more accurately, from its attachment to them. It is an attempt to purify the mind from the conditioned drives (#samskaras) that run through it in the form of body, emotional and breathe memories.

Its primary technique is described by #Patanjali:
“Practice and non-reaction are required to still the patterning of consciousness”

The #Buddha makes the same point in another way when he says “nothing in all the world is left apart or kept aside from the heart emitting loving kindness.” These aphorisms both point to the need for attention and openness/relaxation together. Attention is required as areas that are left unaware are not, as we might presume, left empty but instead left under the sway of these unconscious compulsions, habits, tendencies. Exposure through awareness alone can leave one subject to becoming entangled in the objects of #awareness and reacting even more strongly to them through aversion or attachment.

This principle is expressed also through the Sanskrit words “Sthira Sukham”, or attention that is easy, spacious-attention. These compulsions can inhibit our ability to discern and blind us to the true nature of consciousness which otherwise “takes itself to be the patterning of consciousness” – that is, “knowing”, “seeing” “illuminating”

मन्त्र #mantra from the root ‘man’ that means ‘to think’ or from ‘manas’ which means ‘the mind’ has the noun suffix - tra this means it is ‘the ‘instrument of thinking’ that by which (truthful or aligned) thought arises. The suffix -tra causes a noun to turn into an ‘instrumental noun’ i.e. changing nouns like ‘to teach’ the instrumental that which facilitates teaching or teaches.

mantra as general name for the verses, formulas or sequence of words in prose which contain praise, are believed to have religious, magical or spiritual efficiency, which are meditated upon, recited, muttered or sung in a ritual.
#yogagram #yogafocus #yogainspiration #yogaeverydamnday #yogi #yogalove #yogalife #yogin #yoga

The concept of Saṃsāra has roots in the #Vedic literature, but the theory is not discussed there. It appears in developed form, but without mechanistic details, in the early #Upanishads.The full exposition of the #Saṃsāra doctrine is found in Sramanic religions such as #Buddhism and #Jainism, as well as the various schools of #Hindu philosophy, after about the mid 1st millennium BCE. The Saṃsāra doctrine is tied to the Karma theory of Indian religions, and the liberation from Saṃsāra has been at the core of the #spiritual quest of Indian traditions, divergence only comes in how best to escape from this conditioned, reactive chain.
The liberation from Saṃsāra is called #Moksha, #Nirvana, #Mukti or #Kaivalya.
According to #Monier-Williams, Saṃsāra is rooted in the term Saṃsṛ (संसृ), which means "to go round, revolve, pass through a succession of states. #yoga #yogalife #yogalove #yogainspiration #yogapurpose #whatisyogafor?

On the road to surrender, one needs to develop ethics (yama), refinement ( niyama), posture (asana), pranayama (intimacty with the breath), pratyahara ( sense withdrawal or 'centering'), dharana (concentration), dhyana (absorption built from 'relaxed concentration', and samadhi (surrender to emptiness or infinite creativity). The yogic experience of surrender is ultimately surrender into this emptiness. #yogi #yogainspiration #yogaeverydamnday #yogafocus #yoga #yogalife #yogalove

Then at last Avalokiteshvara arrived at the summit of Marpori, the 'Red Hill', in Lhasa. Gazing out, he perceived that the lake on Otang, the 'Plain of Milk', resembled the Hell of Ceaseless Torment. Myriads of being were undergoing the agonies of boiling, burning, hunger, thirst, yet they never perished, but let forth hideous cries of anguish all the while. When Avalokiteshvara saw this, tears sprang to his eyes. A teardrop from his right eye fell to the plain and became the reverend Bhrikuti, who declared: "Son of your race! As you are striving for the sake of sentient beings in the Land of Snows, intercede in their suffering, and I shall be your companion in this endeavour!" Bhrikuti was then reabsorbed into Avalokiteshvara's right eye, and was reborn in a later life as the Nepalese princess Tritsun. A teardrop from his left eye fell upon the plain and became the reverend Tara. She also declared, "Son of your race! As you are striving for the sake of sentient beings in the Land of Snows, intercede in their suffering, and I shall be your companion in this endeavor!" Tara was also reabsorbed into Avalokiteshvara's left eye, and was reborn in a later life as the Chinese princess Kongjo (Princess Wencheng).[3]

Tārā is also known as a saviouress, as a heavenly deity who hears the cries of beings experiencing misery in saṃsāra.

Whether the Tārā figure originated as a Buddhist or Hindu goddess is unclear and remains a source of inquiry among scholars. Mallar Ghosh believes her to have originated as a form of the goddess Durga in the Hindu Puranas.Today, she is worshiped both in Buddhism and in Shaktism as one of the ten Mahavidyas. #yoga #tara #yogini #goddess #bhakti #mantra #yogalife #yogaig #yogainspiration

Teaching considerations
These areas are undoubtedly useful in terms of leading a successful class… *How and why? (like an internal mantra)
*Observation (the ground from which an appropriate measured class can be built. Also a way of reminding the whole class based on observations from one)
*Classroom management (the order of your class, awareness of the space, your positioning relative to your students, the smooth acquisition of props equipment)
*Linked themes (a way of keeping your classes attention and highlighting important points)
*Classroom enthusiasm: Motivation is one of the principle tasks of a teacher
*Personal attention and appropriate adjustments: With consideration given to the current mental emotional condition of a student as well as to their physical
*Yoga principles: Whether implicit or explicit, it is these principles being a reflection on reality and not an ideal that can really help students to work with their experience
*Safety: Another one of a yoga teacher’s primary concerns and something that should not be jeopardised for any reason
*Terminology/language: Latin and Sanskrit terms should always be backed up by layman’s terms and explanation where needed. Also, directional terms should be repeated and reiterated using different points of reference – “the left, the window side of the room” or “draw knee up or towards your head”
*Anatomy: A clear understanding of anatomy will boost the students’ confidence in the teacher as well as the teacher’s confidence in themselves and help both to understand the mechanics of the poses
*Physics: An understanding of the modern laws of science boost the students’ confidence in what they’re doing as well as their enthusiasm for it and energy they put in. #yogaclass #yogaoutside #yogalife #yogaeverydamnday #yogi #yogainspiration #yogafocus #yogagram

#lotuspose legs. Vajrasati Yoga (VS Yoga) most often takes the form of a straightforward Modern Postural #Yoga class i.e. body work.

Interwoven into the fabric of the MPY asanas is the spirit of the yoga movement as it has come down to us through its various influences such as #Tantra, #Raja, #Advaita Vedanta and #Buddhism.
This is done through the tone of the relationship we have with the practice and through the central premise embodied in the word yoga itself; that the isolation of breath, body, mind, heart, energy is simply a convention which covers a more obvious truth that each of these elements are inseparable parts of one whole experience that has at its heart #freedom, #joy, #wisdom, and #bliss.
We encourage non-violence (ahimasa), honesty (#satya), investigation (svadyaya) as well as using a sense of trust (ishvara pranidhana), or letting go, to find a deeper intuitive connection (yoga) to what we do.
The classes integrate movement, breath, philosophy and humour in a way that leaves you feeling lighter, refreshed and revitalised. #yogaeverydamnday #yogatribe #yogalife #yogalove #yogi #yogini #yogaclasses

Space is an essential element in yoga practice. Space allows a natural expansion. This is true for stars, planets, gases, solids, liquid and it is even true on a metaphysical level, so that consciousness to, depends on space for expansion.

Expansion allows perspective and movement; it is the amount of movement one has that limits choice. The creative mindset which yoga depends on is a mindset that requires both perspective and movement. Without this the yoga cannot move into withdrawal, absorption and Samadhi. #yoga #yogainspiration #yogaposes #hanumanasana #yogaeverydamnday #yogaasprocess #yogalife #yogi #yogini #yogin #yogalove

- #Adjustments -*Instruction given as a general point to a whole class based on the observation of an individual (verbally and/or demonstratively).
*Repeat of the instruction but reiterated, perhaps in a different way.
*Direct instruction to the individual from teaching position (sensitivity being shown towards the students feelings).
*Repeated instruction from teaching position.
*Demonstration or adjustment.
The advantages of proceeding in this way are apparent but keeping the first responsibility with the student (where safety allows)
means that the practise is likely to be deeper, more easily remembered and safer because the student has a sense of empowerment and hence enthusiasm which leads to the very engagement that keeps the brain and body synced up.
-This all being said it remains essential for any Yogi/Yogini to endeavour to move towards the correct shape of any given asana whilst the pace remains dictated by the physicality/psychology of the individual.

It is this very combination of activity and receptivity that gives yoga its name and reveals it's true purpose. Yoga means union or engagement when translated from Sanskrit to English.

It is through the process of engagement that the process of letting go is facilitated.

The more we endeavour to move towards the asana or to be fully concentrated on the mantra, meditation object or breathing practice ect, the more the mind's presence is required and so pre-occupation has to diminish.

At first one finds minor pre-occupations (niggling worries, day to day anxiety or tensions caused from future anticipation) releasing, as the mind drops what keeps it from the engagement necessary to concentrate on the breath or move deeper into the pose, but over time and given an atmosphere of trust and support, deeper pre-occupations release, such as old wounds and the self views that have arisen around them. In fact it is eventually self view itself that begins to release. The consequence not being some kind of attack or destruction of one's being, but to the contrary the very liberation and discovery of who we really are behind all the social/cultural expectations.

The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali - which comprises of 196 sūtras in four parts known as pāda were compiled around 400 CE by Sage Patañjali. Patañjali drew from many streams that were around at the time of authoring the work.
Together with commentaries, the Bhāṣya ect, the work is known as the Pātañjalayogaśāstra. *
They are a combination of practical pointers and profound inspiration have continued to inspire practitioners through the ages. Patañjali’s Yoga aphorisms, are a collection of yogic teachings, brought together into a cohesive whole, and give the yogi a real sense of the full journey and reach of yoga practice. *
It is obvious that Patañjali himself learned from what was practiced around him and then drew this into his own practice, giving the sutras strongly authentic and integrated feel. The teachings have obviously been purified and coalesced in the fire of Patañjali’s own ‘Tapas’ (zeal/discipline/enthusiasm).*
His aphorisms have never been more popular than they are now, with leading teachers such as Patthabhi Jois and B.K.S. Iyengar kicking off their sessions with grateful salutations through this invocation. * The revival of Patañjali’s work was relaunched after some centuries in relative obscurity by Swami Vivekanada (1863 –1902). He should not be confused with the Patañjali who wrote the Mahābhāṣya, a work on sanskrit a third Patañjali is sometimes imagined due to comments made by the great Raja Bhoja (c.1010-1055 CE) who alluded to a Patañjali who was a medic but there is no such medical work yet found by any such person. *
yogena cittasya padena vācāṃ
(yo-gay-nuh chih-tah-syuh pah-day-nuh vah-chahm)*
ṃalam śarīrasya ca vaidyakena
(mah-lahm shah-ree-rah-syuh chuh vy-dyuh-kay-nuh)*
yopākarottaṃ pravaraṃ munīnaṃ
(yo-pah kar-oh-tahm prah-vah-rahm moo-nee-nahm)*
patañjalim prānjalirānato’smi
(pah-tahn-jah-lim prahn-jah-leer ah-nah-to-smee)*
ābāhu puruṢākāram
(ah-bah-hoo poo-roo-shah-ka-ahm)*
śankha cakrāsi dhārinam
(shahn-kah chah-krah-see dar-ee-nahm)*
sahasra śirasaṃ śvetaṃ
(sah-hah-srah sheer-ah-sahm shvay-tahm)
praṇamāmi patañjalim
(prah-nuh-mah-mee pah-tahn-jah-lim) oṃ 🙏😊 #yoga #yogaeverydamnday #yogi

#krounchasana - One of the biggest difficulties a yoga teacher faces is students’ tendencies to externalize the poses. That is to say, the tendency to see a pose in a book or from a teacher and to have the view that to practise is to simply try to immitate the pose before them. Body types are many varied and given the flavour of our highly goal-orientated culture, it is clear that the students must be encouraged to listen to their bodies. In other words, the physical sensations must register as clearly as possible deep within the brain.

Any study of the human brain reveals that its evolution flows from reptile to animal to the present ‘animal plus’, the development of the frontal lobe having changed the most noticeably. The frontal lobe is connected with language and the formation of abstraction and it is through this part of the brain that we communicate. Clearly though, long before these later developments, the brain had more than adequatly neurologically connected with the body. It is to this faculty that Vajrasati teachers are encouraged to communicate, all be it through the frontal lobe.

Recent studies have revealed that in classes where the emphasis has been on personal awareness, injuries have been reduced drastically. Where as injuries in classes where the emphasis is largly external, have been significantly on the increase.

So as far as adjustments and postural correction go, good teachers will always observe carefully but not so as to disturb the internal focus. Walking around (unless done in a way that helps the teacher observe but doesn’t draw the student out) can give a student a sense that there is a pass or fail to the pose and that they should be heading for a pass – i.e the external apperance of a pose takes precedence over what the brain is feeding back about the sensations it feels. This is not to say that the form of the pose is not considered highly important and student teachers are taught to communicate immediatly any observed physiological “no nos” – twisted knees, strained necks, etc – and alternatives are taught where anatomy makes a pose difficult. #yoga #yogainspiration #yogapractice

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