Sunday, October 9, 2011

Day 8 - Some Sunday Thoughts

I'm on day 8 of the cleanse!  Whoo hoo!  The finish line is near.  I drank the penultimate dose of ghee with little drama.  However, I didn't really follow a good meal routine yesterday and it showed in my practice this morning.  Yesterday I had a small bowl of kichari at breakfast and didn't eat again until 7 when I scarfed down a larger bowl. By that point, I was delirious with hunger.

So my practice this morning was pretty rough.  I partially blame the bad eating routine from yesterday and partly blame myself for not heeding my ayurveda teacher's instructions.  She said to practice only primary during a cleanse.  But I thought I knew better.  I was wrong. This morning, by the time I reached kapotasana, I felt like I might just throw up all over my mat at any moment.  So, I dialed it back and took finishing at that point and modified my finishing postures by doing supported bridge and legs up the wall.  It definitely felt better and left me with some energy to teach.

After class, I was asked about regression.  Did I feel like regression was a normal part of the practice?  Heck yeah.  And it is for sure, one of the most difficult parts of the practice.  You're zooming along, adding new postures at a nice pace, and then wham!, something happens in your life that sets your practice back.  It could be a new stress, an illness, or something that you're not even aware of.  I can think of a few examples in my own practice.  A few years ago, I was chugging along in primary. Then suddenly, one day, something weird happened in my left knee.  There was pain where there wasn't before.  Binding and folding in the ardha badhas became impossible.  It was hugely frustrating. But I backed off and listened to my body, and it healed itself.  Other things have gone away and come back. The bind in marichyasana D is one such culprit.

While it may not feel that way in the moment, these are excellent points in one's journey.  When you hit this wall or fall back a bit in the practice, the ego can really assert itself.  It's in these moments that your devotion to the practice are tested.  And it's at this point when many people leave the practice. Rather than face the challenge, they choose a different practice.  In my opinion, seeing the moment for what it is and then opening yourself up to staying with it and learning from it, can be hugely rewarding.  Often, when you stick out these moments, you are able to come to a place where you are then able to move forward.  Sometimes, little step backwards become big steps forwards.

Unrelated to all of this, someone made the recommendation to me to add Kombu to my kitchari.  I did.  YUM.  It definitely adds an additional savoriness and richness.

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