Thursday, 31 January 2019

The Lullaby of Queen Madalasa

Image Source and Selected Readings
Several years ago, I wrote this post about the beautiful teachings Yogini Queen Madalasa gave her infant sons when they cried.

In the cradle, she reminded them that they are not this body, this mind, and these emotions.  She taught them Atma Jnana or the Wisdom of the Higher Self.

When I heard this rendition of the song I was brought to tears and knew it was time for an update.

Sanskrit Song from the Markandeya Purana

Gabriella Burnel is a Sanskrit scholar and accomplished musician.  To learn more about her and to read the full story from the Markandeya Purana click here.

Wednesday, 30 January 2019

PAC 156, Yoga and the Chakras

I'm honored to be a guest in your Yoga class today to introduce an asana practice which focuses on the pranamayakosha.

It is adapted from the "Yoga of Lady Niguma" which was taught to me directly by Geshe Michael Roach.  Through postures and meditation, we will concentrate on the movement of prana through the nadis and chakras.

According to the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, there are 72 000 channels in the body through which life energy flows.  They intersect at hubs referred to as chakras, meaning "wheels".  These chakras are knots which prevent the rising of Kundalini.

Tibetan Buddhist practitioners of Yoga have their own unique interpretation of this system of subtle channels which you can read about herehere and here.

Geshe Michael describes the history of this series and the life of Lady Niguma here.

And teaches the first series in full here.

I hope you learn something today which is of help to you in your studies and in your daily life.

I look forward to seeing you next month for an Introduction to the Language and Literature of Yoga.

Sunday, 6 January 2019

Goddesses of Creation at the Art Gallery of Alberta

She is devouring, ferocious, and awe-inspiring. She is nurturing, tender and benevolent. In Hinduism the Goddess (Shakti) enacts the cycle of creation as envisioned by the Gods Vishnu and Shiva. The Goddess is represented in various forms throughout the history of art in India, and in classical Sanskrit religious literature, like the Mahabharata and Ramayana.
Recent scholarship asserts that many important characteristics of the female divine are derived from folk and oral traditions, as well as from aristocratic and literary ones. For example, the Goddess Kali can be seen to have roots in the fierce Goddesses of village traditions, and as such has been called by revered Hindu scholar A.K. Ramanujan a "Goddess of the Tooth". In contrast, he calls the benign and motherly Lakshmi and Bhudevi "Goddesses of the Breast." Featuring the return of the AGA’s 12th century Shiva Bhairava, the exhibition encourages the viewer to discover the multiplicity of forms and meanings in these images of the Goddess.

On Now:  December 1, 2018 – March 24, 2019
Thursday, January 10:  FREE Bharatanatyam Performance from 6-7 pm
Organized by the Art Gallery of Alberta. Curated by Elizabeth Herbert.