Another week and another sunday morning yoga class gave Birdelini and I food for thought. This times it’s about holding on to your own space, owning and nourishing that space however expansive or tiny it may be. It refers not to marking out your territory but to truly holding your own self/space with no harsh negative judgments, an acceptance of your space and peace with your space. In the winter “our space” sometimes feels tighter and more constricted. It’s not really. It’s our innate human nature of “winterizing”- we tend to stand less tall, fold into ourselves more, rounded shoulders and slouching. In the cold we bundle up, look down, and walk fast to our destinations. That’s pretty close to tight-fisted living. (see last weeks post). Holding your own space goes hand in hand (all puns intended) with open palm living. You need to understand you can’t micro manage your space, you need to let is be, to fill, expand, and contract as needed. You certainly don’t need to try to control anyones else’s space, for that is really fruitless. Your space is what it is- your space, don’t judge it or others and the sides of your space will be so much smoother.
I poked around on-line a bit and found this at Spiritual Awaking Process. I thought he did a nice job of talking about this issue.
“Holding Space: Some Key Attributes Let me try to break this down a little bit. Here are a couple key characteristics to holding space, and I’ll give an example to help solidify what I’m talking about. Some components are:
Letting go of judgment
Opening your heart
Allowing another to have whatever experience they’re having
Giving your complete undivided attention to the situation/other person
Those are really the key elements of holding space. You’re not trying to influence the situation. You’re not trying to fix it, win at it, or affect any kind of outcome. You are simply being with it fully so that it can work itself out. This doesn’t mean becoming a victim to it. Quite the contrary actually, you’re very powerful in this space, and it certainly doesn’t mean being hurt physically by another. By when you’re deep into a space like this, you are far more immune to any “emotional” hurt than you might realize…” ( read more)
Sunday mornings I often have a small argument with myself, there are three parts to this “conversations.” The first part is: I am most likely lying in bed, snug and comfortable, and since it’s winter the outside is cold and my bed is warm. Leaving it seems silly. The second part is from my body: It is often just plain old tired and going back to sleep is pretty much always tempting. The third part is my mind: You see, the ideal, and the goal is, to get up, get moving, and go to Sunday morning yoga class. The mind says: Go- you will be glad you did…Go-it is always a good idea to go to yoga …Go-you will learn something new, whether it be a corrected pose or a thought. … Go- it’s exercise and stretching, and especially in the winter it’s important to keep the body moving! … Go-you love it when you do. Go-you feel better after class/practice. Go-its self kindness. Im glad to say the mind usually wins these days, and I do get up and go!
This past Sunday my teacher brought up a topic she has mentioned a few times lately. It’s the wisdom of an open palm. Birdelini and I love this and keep thinking about it. Read on and we think you will too.
Lets try something. Stop reading for about 30 seconds and make two tight fists. Clamp your hands as hard as you can. Breathe in and out. Hold another bit. Now think about that for a moment. It doesn’t feel very good, your muscles tend to tense up, you may have even scrunched up your face muscles. Did you feel the tension that came with that? Thats a fist that lets nothing in! Now, just put your hands out and open your palms up to the ceiling. …. Breathe in and out. Stay there another bit….Kind of amazing the difference in feelings! One is tight, controlling and stressful to hold. The other is almost relaxing! That’s the beauty of open palm living! An open palm, lets the day take its course it doesn’t need to control everything, for an open palm is open for giving and receiving. “Often we are focused on what we can get for ourselves out of the fear that if we don’t get all we can then someone else will get it and we will be missing out. We clench our fist and hold on tight. The Open Palm knows that there is much for everyone…” -http://www.balancedlifeyoga.ca/the-wisdom-of-an-open-palm-finding-balance/. Open palm living lets it “be” – ebbing and flowing, giving and taking in an open manner.
Birdelini and I continue in our yoga practice….we’re loving the open palm thoughts, and trying to be open to all that comes our way. How about you?
open palms here…
camel pose-Heart Opening – relieve tension and stress.
Week two! Birdeini and I went back to yoga this week. We really enjoyed it- the room was filled with great “vibes” and we were relaxed when we left. Eagerly awaiting next week! As usual, Birdelin was looking spiffy, here she is working on Sphinx pose. The Sphinx Pose is a relaxing pose in which you lie down and soothe your body like a sphinx. Its name means “half-cobra pose” – ” It lengthens the abdominal muscles, strengthens the spine, and firms the buttocks. It also stretches and opens the chest, lungs, and shoulders. It invigorates the body, soothes the nervous system, and is also therapeutic for fatigue…Its name in Sanskrit, “Salamba Bhujangasana” (sah-LOM-bah boo-jahn-GAHS-uh-nuh), comes from four Sanskrit words:
Birdelini and I went to yoga for the first time in YEARS yesterday. Our legs are still a bit wobbly today, but it’s a good sore.
As you can see, Birdelini insists on being styling – I was not nearly as fancy! Click on image to see it larger .
In case you want to know: Virabhadrasana is the Sanskrit name for Warrior Pose. These beautiful but vigorous poses are named after the great hero warrior Virabhadra from Hindu mythology.
The Warrior Poses take strength, steadiness, and a fierce determination to hold them with integrity. The legs and arms need to be strong and extended (where the legs are straight), the hips flexible, the chest open and well-lifted, and the spine extended to hold these poses well.-http://www.squidoo.com/yoga-warrior-pose