A lot of folks are asking me about how hard doing the 108 sun salutations will be in our special Summer Solstice Yoga practice.
“Will it kick my ass?”
“My body isn’t strong enough.”
“How bad am I going to ache afterward?”
While there is an undeniable physicality to the 108 sun salutation practice, and being mindful of our limits is important, preparing our spirit and mindfulness of spirit should not be ignored.
I’m planning a series of blog posts in preparation for the 108 Sun Salutations and I will give specific time and attention to the care of our bodies, before and after the practice.
But first we should sit with the whys of this journey.
We will gather together next Tuesday, on the Summer Solstice, to put our bodies and spirits into motion with a whole-body prayer sequence – a body mala practice so to speak. What is compelling you to embark on this journey?
I suggest starting a journal now as you probe this intention. It may not be immediately clear to you upon this reading. For others, it might be glaringly obvious.
Write to yourself what you are hoping to see/feel/achieve/let go of/invite in.
Sit. Meditate. Settle your waters and look within. Then write. Meditate some more. Read. And write.
This process of journaling will bring into focus some meditation points for you to use on your journey on your mat during the 108 practice.
Think of each sun salute as a single prayer bead that you cycle through, devoting your heart and soul to your prayer points or intention. As we move through sequence together, this single-pointed focus (dharana) will be critical toward keeping us going and it may take a journey on its own.
“Yogas citta vrtti nirodah”
This practice quiets the mind. Or at least that’s an aspiration and point of practice – quieting the mind. Your mind will likely take its own journey, more so than in a regular vinyasa or power class.
Your journaling and meditation on your intention for this 108 practice delivers your mantra to you – your prayer.
As your mind quiets to the pulse and rhythm of the salutations, there will remain your unique and individual prayers and devotions. They are your focus that you use and settle on when you start to bore or fatigue. Use them when you start to question why you’re on your mat finding endless repetitions of this whole body mantra.
You must find your mantra before you can devote your body to it.
Find your mantra and commit to it.
Find your mantra and you will be ready for your practice, not just a physically demanding exercise.