Day 2, Dec. 18, 2017, AM session, Pune, India.
“We have a universe within, and just the world without.” The elegance with which Prashant leads you into the invocation is an entire lesson itself. “Exhale to flush out the worldliness, exhale and flush out all sense of identity, conditions, and those things that matter in the worldly plane. Use deeper and deeper exhalations, progressively, systematically, surrender within.” He then shifts to different patterns with the in breath. “Inhale from the pelvis to the heart and exhale from the throat to heart. Exhale behind the lungs, in front of and below, not just in the physical lungs. Exhale within and with the organic body to sanitize and purify the mind. Consecrate the breath, the mind and psychic. Now circumambulate the heart with the breath. Sanctify, begin a silent OM in the heart.” Invocation.
Here is a classic example of a Prashantism, and those of you who work with him know what I am talking about. “What is difference between application on the legs and application by the legs?” When I first heard this kind of talk I thought that he was being clever. Now I see that his language is like a flashlight pointing out where the main event is. He often talks about the benefactor and the beneficiary: again, it seemed like he was over intellectualizing things. But now I begin to understand, and there is a huge difference.
Language is important he said.
Doing Trikonasana is different than
Using the leg in Trikonasana or using the spine.
Doing is making a face, like when you stand in front of the mirror and see yourself.
Using is applying to, building intelligence; we know that something needs to be done.
He told us that there are apps (like in computers applications, apps) in the legs, in the spine, everywhere. And there are applications of an asana for different situations. Adho Mukha Svanasana can be done for the shoulder, for the abdomen, for the mind. “When someone comes with a shoulder problem, or a breathing problem, Guruji would say, dog pose. If they came with a back problem, dog pose; but was it the same dog?”
We did Dog pose for the abdomen, he had us first bend the legs slightly and focus on the abdomen. We then slowly extended the legs. He chided us that we would normally stretch, straighten, tighten the legs, like a hurricane of busyness.
While Prashant’s work may seem intellectual, or wordy, I find that he is merely showing a map for the journey from the periphery to the core of being. This is what Guruji always eloquently said, but the technique and process was not as delineated as it is with Prashant. Prashant does not teach a regular class as we know it. You may only do 5 poses in 2 hours. He talks a lot. It is almost as if he expects you to do this work in the privacy of our own home. I do wish he would give us time to apply his principals. I was lucky enough to take class with him early in this century. These were what he now refers to as his formative years, he was evolving his voice. We worked extensively with the breath in asana, we worked with sound and visualizations. “I have opened out the scheme of asanas. Address first the body, then the breath, then the mind, then the sense-set addressals (addressals = the act of addressing something (such as a problem or issue).
“We all use willpower, we impose. Now take a little time getting into the pose, for we each have our own inclination and you must sometimes let it go and not use will power. Then slowly open the gates of will power and see “will over matter,” and ask, from where does the will come from? How to channel it? We do 100% every time and it is stupid. It is like spending $100 on every cup of tea. What is suitable and justifiable for my condition now? You must have your own diagnostics and prognosis. Do not leave it to the teacher to tell you what is right or wrong. Develop the conscience and sensitivity to learn from yourself.”