Asana is the third limb to the eight limb path of Yoga according to the Yoga Sutras. Asana is associated with ascetic austerities that are practiced to result in the state of mind being stilled and awakened. In Yoga Sutra 2.46 it states, to practice Asana you just need two things, Sthira – Steadiness and Sukham – Comfort. Patanjali’s purpose of asana was to be steady and comfortable in the posture to meditate. Any posture.
The next suggestion was from Yoga Sutra 2.47 which states how to master Asana. Be in a posture where there is structural integrity and a sense of ease. Then create effort by meditating on something specific, becoming more effortless. Pointing the practitioner to train the mind to rest it’s awareness on something, leading it to stillness. Stillness is the goal of the activity of practicing Yoga-Asana, stated in Yoga Sutra 1.2 Citta Vritti Nirodha, stilling the fluctuations of the mind to then enter the state of Yoga. Hatha Yogis figured out that if you created activity on the levels of the body, energy and mind, it increases one’s access to stillness, quietude and being motionless. So create effort to become effortless!
The good thing is that Patanjali listed things that you can focus on in Yoga Sutra 1.34 -1.44. However, we will focus on Yoga Sutra 1.34 breath awareness, 1.35 sensation, and finally 1.36 light.
Yoga Sutra 2.48 states the results in practicing this way is that the pair of opposites cease to exist or have an impact. The Yogi goes beyond duality! Unimpeded freedom from suffering, due to the pairs of opposites such as heat and cold, good and bad, or pain and pleasure or any life circumstances affecting the state the Yogi awakens to.
So we practice. This sequence is a dynamic way we prepare the hips and spine to sit for meditation. Enjoy!
*My wrist is wrapped up to offer myself support as I fell and waiting for it to heal. So I might be demonstrating different things on my hand that is injured. Please follow the healthy hand*