Happy Friday! It's with mixed feelings that I end this week. First of all, the workshop is not over. We have a session tomorrow, Saturday, noon-4pm, so I still have another day of learning opportunities left! Still, I am 5/6 of the way done. I feel proud to have made it through this far, my body is tired, I have tons of information to sort through. I feel both excited about all I have learned, yet overwhelmed by everything I still don't know!
We started with morning asana with Max. Reviewed positions in postures and worked on sequencing as well as added a few new postures to the mix. Max talked about ahimsa and assigned us homework: to write about how we incorporate ahimsa into our lives and how we could do better. I think about this a lot. How can I write only one page? :-)
In the afternoon, Max talked with us about Presence, Gratitude, Forgiveness and Peace. One thing that really stuck with me: we talked about all the attributes that give someone Presence; what makes us want to be around some people? We mentioned awareness, calmness, happiness, vitality, a good listener, making eye contact, in the present moment. No one mentioned that you have to be good looking, or smart, or athletic, yet these are all the things we THINK we have to be. Why is that?
He talked about gratitude. You cannot feel gratitude and resentment or anger at the same time, so if you can find something to be grateful for, your anger and resentment will diminish. Humility builds balance and when you are humbled, you are able to forgive. Forgiveness allows for Peace.
As you might imagine, it has been a very emotional week. Doing a lot of bodywork and a lot of deep breathing brings a lot of emotions to the surface and we have all experienced it. I feel like I just need some quiet time. I feel vulnerable, very raw. Emotions are close to the surface; it takes very little to make my eyes well up with tears. Others have expressed feelings of anger, but I haven't felt that. People have shed tears in certain postures, or during sivasana. It has really drawn us close together as a group. It is an amazing dynamic.
Later, Patricia's husband, Bob came to our class. He lined up along with other class members to represent a "typical" yoga class, with flexible people and tight hamstring people and everyone in between. Max and Jamie "taught" the class, showed adjustments, how to make everyone feel comfortable yet challenged in the poses. The end of the day we spent working in some adaptations of more advanced poses, like ustrasana (camel), Natarajasana (king dancer), and Urdhva Dhanurasana (wheel). They were supposed to be "easier." Let's just say my thighs are still burning!