Guest Author - Terri Johansen
What is your favorite yoga pose (asana)? It is the pose that feels closet to your heart. Your favorite poses can say a lot about you. I have divided some yoga poses into several groups. See if you can find where you might fit in.
Nature and Animal Poses
This area refers to poses that feature animal names, names from nature, and even names from tools. Here is some general information.
•Think of nature as the sky, sun, moon, the weather, just a small sampling of what can be included. Through observing the natural world around us we open to the varieties of life existing around us. Just think how the flow of a stream, the heat of the sun, the vast forest and plains, all can make you feel alive with energy from the earth.
One of the most common poses connected to nature is Tree Pose. Tree pose relates that you are grounded, however you enjoy reaching for your boundaries. Try feeling your connection to the earth through the roots of “your” Tree.
•Animal poses are very common in yoga. There are Cobra, Pigeon, Lion, Crane, Horse Stance, Head of Cow, and so many more. Through the animal poses we can connect with the forces within us that allow us to see beyond our everyday lives and bond with our deeper nature.
•Headstand indicates a challenge and self confidence. It encourages you to feel safe in any situation. It is often referred to as “seeing the world through a different view, upside down.”
•Handstand indicates you’re an adventurer. You seek simplicity in disorder. Your challenge is to find steadiness but be able to accept a fall gently.
•Cobbler’s Pose and Pigeon Pose show you are able to handle distress and know that even if you are pushed to the edge you are safe. These poses represent the ability to open up to emotions that you may hide from.
•Everybody loves Corpse Pose. Most of us lead busy lives and Corpse Pose offers a place for deep rest. You are likely over-tired and this is a reminder that you need time to rest. Give yourself some space and allow for a little relaxation each day.
Groups of Poses
•Backbends show an open loving nature. They are energizing and you have enthusiasm for life.
•Forward Bends show that you are thoughtful and you enjoy being quiet, contemplating your inner thoughts.
•Standing Poses designate fearlessness. You are able to keep your life in balance dividing hard work and submission. Remind yourself to take time for rest and regeneration.
•Twists indicate curiosity. They supply you with sustenance and delight, as you connect to those around you. You are aware of tension and deal with it calmly.
•Balancing poses show your curiosity about life. You do not allow perfection to rule you. You know that learning to fall and get back up is yoga in pure form.
Hopefully this has given you some insight into the many dimensions of yoga poses and maybe understand yourself just a little better.
Live well, practice yoga.
The Pure Heart of Yoga: Ten Essential Steps for Personal Transformation , by Robert Butera © 2009
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