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Monthly Inspiration: March 2017

In Like A....

Jessica Bellofatto

March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb, or so the saying goes. It certainly held true for the first few days of this month with some of the coldest temperatures we have had all winter, and that WIND! I always feel like March is an important time to pause, to take stock. It feels in many ways like a midway point, a couple of months after making New Years Resolutions and hunkering down for the winter, and still a couple of months to go before spring has truly sprung and we can emerge from our winter slumber (although with three kids and two businesses to run there is not much slumbering going on over this way, and I am sure many of you can relate), but you get the point. Can we shift our minds away from the political climate and the seeming chaos of the world around us, and check in with ourselves? What ARE we manifesting in the world around us moment to moment? How much are we either contributing to the tension and dis-ease in the world, or providing a refuge from it? Are we speaking up when appropriate? The bottom line is that what we say and do DOES in fact matter, in ways both big and small, both locally and within our homes, and has far-reaching effects as well.

On the home page of the KamaDeva Yoga website there is a quote from Sri Swami Satchidananda: "Yoga believes in transforming the individual before transforming the world." This may seem like a cop-out, with the buzz word of 'self-care' so trendy these days. But more and more, every single person I admire and am inspired by, every great teacher I have ever had, stresses the importance of DOING THE WORK. Get on the mat, get on the cushion, set the alarm an hour early each day, and DO THE WORK. It reminds me of giving birth. The process of labor and having a baby can not be avoided (to a degree). The best way to approach that process is not through fear and resistance but through embracing it and knowing that on the other side is the most amazing reward, a sweet new baby. Our life is the same. No matter what is going on in the world, we engage.  The only way out is IN and THROUGH, in more ways than one. So this works both ways. We go IN to discover our connection to Self, our connection to Love, our connection to Source. Then, from that place, we speak up and act in the world. It is of no use to anyone to do all of that inner work to then not share it.

So this month, in celebration of the lion and discovering our own authentic voices through deep inner work and then ACTING, LION POSE (simhasana) is our focus and asana of the month!

Simhasana (Lion's Pose)

Simhasana can really be done in any pose. The lion's roar is the defining characteristic of Simhasana. This roar releases tension in the entire body and stimulates the throat chakra, which is the seat of communication, allowing us to express ourselves authentically.

To Do: Sit in Vajrasana (Thunderbolt) on your heels. Take a deep inhale and with the exhalation, stick out your tongue and exhale forcefully while also rolling your eyes back and focus at the space between the eyebrows. Engage your entire body and lift your buttocks slightly off your heels as you also extend the arms straight and spread the fingers like a lion's claws. The sound that is made is an aspirate, rather than vocalized, sound and should feel as if it is coming all the way from the pelvic floor. Relax and Repeat a few times. Notice the effects of this pose.  Energizing, heating, but also deeply relaxing and soothing as we release deep seated tension and emotion from the body, ready to take on the world... :)

KamaDeva Yoga, 15 Lumber Lane, 2nd Fl, East Hampton, NY 11937 Tel: 917.301.6919 Monthly Inspiration Archives