Fantastic day in the the beautiful setting of Tir-na-nOg holistic centre: Yoga, chanting, meditation and a Shakti new moon fire. The weather was fabulous, so we were able to practice our first yoga session outside. We started the day with tea and biscuits in the sun.
Through the day we worked with the energy of the new moon; a good time for introspection, resting, meditation and setting intentions. As we moved through the day we kept in mind our clear intention for the next moon cycle. When we do yoga we are in a space of calm and focus, our mind is more receptive to change; moving beyond the ideas and thought patterns we have established. This is why it is a good time to keep in mind a positive intention or affirmation, so that we may move beyond the limitations we have set on ourselves. When you are setting yourself an intention or affirmation it is important that it is clear, definite, something that makes you feel joyous and harmonious and is thought of in simple, precise, present-tense language, creating the image or feeling that the intention has happened. The new moon symbolises the always present void, that we can change things at any moment, we can let go of any ideas that are not helpful and plant new positive seeds.
Hatha Yoga is a dance between the sun and moon, a dance of balance and equanimity. We search to find unity with the breath, the body, the mind and the spirit to achieve the state of Yoga. There are many paths to achieve this, and in the afternoon we used Bhakti yoga - using sound and chanting as a why to quieten the mind, uplift the spirits and bring us to the state of unity.
The afternoon practice focused on the energy of the sun, strength, heat, power, the energy of summer. The practice was still introspective, being aware of how we were feeling. But focusing on working from the core - the centre of our being - strengthening our connection to ourselves, our own sense of self and our own inner fire. Everything moves from the core. Our goal poses were Natarajasana - the lord of the dancers and Shiva Natraj - Shiva's dance of Bliss, representing the cosmic cycle of creation and destruction, birth and death. Yoga teaches us that duality and separateness are an illusion no one can avoid the cosmic cycle, we are all united in the dance.
The day ended with the Shakti Fire. Working now with the feminine and earth energy to purify and strengthen. Encouraging the female aspect in us all to claim its place within the world in order to bring love and harmony to the earth. A beautiful ceremony offering rice to the fire to release a thought, action, state of being that no longer serves. Singing “Om Shakti Jay Jay, Om Swaha Jay Jay” which translates as “May the female power be successful”
Thank you to all the participates for sharing their beautiful energy with us.
A beautiful evening of acapella-style Kirtan with James Boag, who was here from Mysore India teaching a weekend workshop at Merchant City Yoga. There was a great turn out from participants, who chanted and sang whole-heartedly, leaving looking radiant and joyous.
Really enjoyed Knockengorroch this year, and so glad that the yoga classes were scheduled a bit later :) Seemed to make a difference for numbers too, as there was a fantastic turn out each morning. Thank you to all those who came the class. The sun was shining and the wind died down and festival site was full of happy people bopping to some great music. Lovely food too for a festival. This year I went to some workshops - Tai Chi (http://9wavestaichi.org/) and Belly Dancing (http://bobbybeakbane.com/wordpress/)- both were great. Watch this space for a yoga and belly dance collaboration event, very exciting.