Ask me anything   This blog is an archive of my journey through life, likes and my ashtanga yoga practice

twitter.com/fdelacruz:

    "Genius is the ability 
to renew one’s emotions 
in daily experience.”

                     P. Cezanne (at New York Public Library for the Performing Arts)

    "Genius is the ability
    to renew one’s emotions
    in daily experience.”

    P. Cezanne (at New York Public Library for the Performing Arts)

    — 1 month ago with 1 note

    The wave said to the sea: “Could I be like you?”  

    The sea replied: “It’s easy… just settle down.”  

    - Ramana Maharshi

    (Source: painting-a-picture, via lazylucid)

    — 2 months ago with 204 notes
    hollow up your stomach..

    My abs hurt from all that hollowing up my stomach.

    That’s what Alex kept asking me to do, hollow up your stomach and breath from your chest. This was from across the room.

    You would’ve been led to believe that I just started practicing Mysore yesterday I was so oblivious to the fact that you’re supposed to hollow up your (daggone) stomach and Ujjayi breath! at the same time. You would probably be right because it seems that I’m starting from scratch at AYSNYC.

    Well, apparently I got something right because now I can feel my abs.

    Tomorrow comes I will go back for more.

    — 2 months ago with 4 notes
    #ashtanga  #mysore 
    "You know nothing…"

    Today was my third day at Ashtanga Yoga Shala NYC, but my very first to practice with Guy Donahaye, the teacher there. 

    I said that maybe I would practice in the evenings with Alex, but the truth is that I’m a morning person and on Monday I had to shuffle too much in order to eat leaving sufficient time (4hrs) before practice at 6pm. I still felt heavy and sluggish so no, for now I will practice early and just go back and do my work-study in the evening.

    Back to Guy..

    How do I put it?? He nitpicked my entire practice.

    • Legs not wide enough in my Parivritta Trikonasana
    • I’m supposed to touch head to floor in my Prasarita Padottanasana, which again means wider legs
    • Stomach was not hard enough, this he pointed out in my Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana (Uddiyana bandha)
    • I was not breathing hard enough with sound (Ujjayi)
    • Extended leg needed to be straighter in my Janu Sirsasana

    Eventually he asked me stop at Bhujapidasana and just do my backbending. So I only went through 2/3 of my practice since I’m up to Urdhva Mukha Paschimottanasana. Or at least I think I was. 

    I see this not a deterring experience (which was surely was a little initially) but as an opportunity to look at my practice and tighten it where I have been slacking. This is the part I guess now I forgot when I decided to work with a kpjayi certified teacher.

    Tomorrow comes I will go back for more.

    — 2 months ago with 5 notes
    #mysore  #ashtanga 
    New work-study, New Shala

    A work-study opportunity came up at Ashtanga Yoga Shala NYC so starting this morning I started practicing there.

    This room is tiny and intimate. Packed to the gills, mats lined-up back to back. The lack of elbow room was initially uncomfortable, but it kept my drishti in check, circumventing my field of view to my own mat and all distractions at bay. It worked. I flew through my given asanas to the point that I had to stop midpoint and take inventory of what I had already done to make sure I hadn’t skipped anything.

    Guy Donahey, the main teacher was out of town so his assistant, Alex (Schatzberg) was at the helm today. His adjusts felt good, firm, and unrelenting, Guruji style. I have to admit I was a little nervous and perhaps judgemental about this very thing, Mysore style can be very intimate and close and I have never been assisted by another man.

    I don’t think that way anymore. 

    I came to AYSNYC looking for two things that I thought were necessary for my practice to advance, both were satisfied, an Ashtanga-ONLY shala and a primary teacher, certified. Even though Alex is not authorized I’ve heard great things about him prior to coming here. He is personable, sensitive, knowledgeable about the practice and with a firm grip in his assists.

    Certification is no longer needed.

    Alex teaches in the evenings which is when I will be doing my work-study so it makes sense to come practice with him and work right after.

    Initially I was a little apprehensive and scared to take the plunge into new territory, leaving my beloved teachers and friends at The Shala Yoga House behind. I even wrote to Alex an email declining the position after I was accepted. Luckily, I was able to reconsidered in time.

    If I wanted to take my practice to the next level I had to get out of my comfort zone, let go and do what I have to do.

    — 2 months ago with 3 notes
    #ashtanga  #mysore 
    The night is dark and full of terrors…

    So today marked the full month of doing dropbacks, it should have been a call for celebration, but not yet because ever since one of my teachers, B, had me touching the floor behind me (twice) it has been going downhill from there **no pun**. Ending last night with thoughts of just being too old, not eating the right food, and of even being sure I had herniated a disc, I was so stiff and in so much discomfort. It was all eating me up inside and out. Nevertheless, I was resolved to make it right so applied lots of ICYHOT, cuddled with my copy of Gregor Maehle's ASHTANGA YOGA Practice and Philosophy and I went to sleep with a better idea of how to go about the right Urdhva Dhanurasana, no dropbacks for me until I got that one right. Or so I thought. Come 4am my alarm came on and I immediately shut it off resolved with the idea of not practicing today. My mind had convinced me through the night with my lower back in pain that I was not going to practice, that I needed the rest. Maybe so.. It was the hardest thing to do for me I have only missed one other day since I started practicing Ashtanga and that was because I had broken a toe. 

    Anyways, I went back to sleep.

    Woke up some time later feeling that was enough sleep and of how my fellow ashtangis should have been finishing their practices by now. It must’ve been way past 10, I thought, but no it was only a little before 7am and I had no pain, "Oh shit, I can make it to the Shala by 8:30..and still get my practice on.", I muttered to myself immediately .

    Not thirty minutes later I was in the station caffeinated on my way to the shala in disbelief.

    I must’ve had one of my best practices to date light, halfway dropbacks included. No pain in sight.

    The moral of the story, don’t listen to your mind at night for ..

    The night is dark and full of terrors…but the fire burns them all away.

      —Melisandre

    — 2 months ago with 2 notes
    #ashtanga  #mysore  #GoT 

    Great Indian Yogi: Neem karoli baba

    (Source: visualactivist)

    — 3 months ago with 4 notes
    #neem karoli baba 
    Ashtanga & Gratitude. ~ Shayan Landrum →

    To be embodied, to have the physical ability to practice at all is a miracle, and we should practice with gratitude to be here to practice. Within the Ashtanga system, we try to progress, but progressing is not actually attempting to achieve anything materially. It is an act of embracing the gift that is our life, showing gratitude for the body we have, and being willing to face whatever is arising in that moment.

    And so we practice Ashtanga Vinyasa, because, for now, we are embodied, and that miracle is a source of boundless gratitude. Because it is the system that we have chosen, or that has chosen us. And, because, as one of my teachers once said to me, “What else would you do?”

    (Source: spiritualfolly)

    — 3 months ago with 5 notes
    #ashtanga