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100 Days of Gladness, Day 8

Lying Down.

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In 1992, I was introduced to yoga by a teacher in Bellevue, Washington, named Aadil Palkhivala. I absolutely loved his classes, and became a regular there. Why? I sensed his authenticity, but he was also strangely hilarious. So, you know. YOGA. Only well into my journey there did I learn he was a world renowned ‘teacher of teachers,’ and that he had been taught from childhood by BKS Iyengar himself.

That’s how I originally got into yoga. But eventually, I wanted to share it. So when I moved here to Long Island, NY with my wife, I took courses from Yoga & Polarity Center in Malverne and learned to teach it.

As a beginner in yoga, one of the most difficult poses for me was always Savasana (corpse pose). Which is weird, because it was the one I couldn’t wait for — and it always came at the very end. You just lie down flat and rest.

That’s why I loved it.

But what was so hard for me was the “rest” part. To let go. All through the class, I’d be waiting when we’d get to Savasana, wishing we were there already. When we got there, I’d spend the whole time wishing it would never end. Very rarely was I actually in Savasana.

So today, I am especially glad for the whole world of “lying down.” The pallette of lying down has many colors on it. In yoga, it’s Savasana. In our culture, there are Savasana-adjacent colors, such as napping, resting and/or snoozing.

Whatever it is for you, when you allow yourself to just let the world be itself without you for a while — and you go lie down — that’s what I’m glad for today.

In Savasana the way I learned it, there are many ways to release your body to the force of gravity. I like to begin by feeling all the points where my body actually makes contact with the ground. And then I like to move to the aspects I rarely think about: letting the eyes rest in their sockets, allowing the throat to open and relax, the skin on the facial bones to melt, the limbs to grow heavy.

It’s an authentically restorative, and profoundly important practice. One day I’ll make a recording against some appropriate music, hoping to help people sleep. Until then, enjoy this music — a 5.46 minute piece I wrote to play at the end of my yoga classes while I led the students into a state of Savasana.

Blessings to all of you. And I send out special blessings to all beings suffering as a result of the wars we can’t seem to stop waging on this earth. I wish I could give them all a permanent state of the peace intended by this music.


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