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The Inner Gaze in Astanga Yoga

Met Michael Hamilton

This workshop has taken place already, please visit our Workshop Page for a more recent offering of workshops and trainings.

Yoga is more than a body practice, it is also the cultivation of the awareness which helps our mental and emotional development.

As we refine our practice we initially become aware of body sensations, later we start to notice how they affect thoughts and emotions. When we look closely we realize that what we experience in the body and the mind is the posture. Awareness is the field of connectivity where all these sensations can be observed. We can call this observation the inner gaze, because it looks at that space where life unfolds as an embodied experience.

We will emphasize the alignment principle of inter-related oppositions to help create and strengthen this inner gazing power of awareness in dynamic flow sequences built around sun salutations, standing postures, seated postures and a theme posture, which will vary for each session (see themes below).

Saturday 3 November - morning:

A longer led asana practice drawing on the primary series of Ashtanga Yoga, with a focusing on the outer line of the leg in a-symmetrical forward bends as preparation for hip openers.  Asana practice will be preceded by an opening talk on working with sensations as a field of awareness and will be followed by a guided meditation (mindfulness meditation).

Saturday 3 November - afternoon

In this slower asana class we will discover inter-related oppositions (prana and apana) in standing postures in order to understand how extension (back bending) and flexion (forward bending) connect the legs to the spine through the pelvic girdle. In the second portion of the class there will be a talk on the challenges to starting spiritual practice and how we can draw from the contemplative traditions of India such as Advaita Vedanta and Buddhism to help us find our way.

Sunday 4 November - morning

A longer led asana practice will be offered drawing on the intermediate series of Ashtanga Yoga with a focus on back bending principles that assist in preparation for initiating the drop back. A guided meditation (metta meditation) will follow the asana practice to close the session.

Sunday 4 November - afternoon

This slower asana class offers auxiliary postures for opening the front of the hips, the shoulder girdle and the sacrum as preparation for deeper spinal extension in the upward facing bow posture (urdhva dhanurasana).  
A talk on the development of devotion (bhakti as found in the Bhagavad Gita) and compassion (bodhicitta as found in Yogachara Buddhism) as vital preparation and grounding for heart opening will close the session.

There will be time at the end of each session for Q&A. The workshop is open to all students with previous yoga experience as variations will be given.


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Krijg je je inschrijfgeld terug als je je deelname aan een workshop onverhoopt moet annuleren? Lees artikel 14 ‘Annulering Deelname Workshop’ van onze Algemene Voorwaarden om precies te weten waar je aan toe bent.