Asana & Practice Precision


Have you ever wondered why yoga instructors are always telling us to “get into” the proper asana?  When we go to yoga retreats, why they always stress achieving a precise posture?  And why spiritual retreats have practice correction sessions?  The precision of practice shows up in all traditions but perhaps within the mainstream, you’ve most heard of it in Zen practices.

It may help to look at this from the ultimate goal’s perspective.  What are we trying to achieve in all of these spiritual endeavors?  Perfect alignment with the pure essence of existence.  Perfect balance of being.

As Physics have demonstrated, if everything is energy and energy manifests in form then the playing with form has energetic ripples.  Our thoughts and actions produce energetic vibrations.  So let’s put these concepts together.

When we achieve the yoga asana in perfect balance, without resistance, and in total harmony with our mind, body, spirit, then does it not follow that the associated energy waves would be in perfect alignment with the unmanifest and eternal?  And would that resonance not provide an exalting feedback loop back into our system?  When our spiritual practices are in the serene silence of mindlessness and in tune with the universe, does that influence not nurture our growth?

This is why spiritual masters are always telling us to submit to the process, without egoic banter and mental resistance, and we will experience the fruits for ourselves.  This is why we are told, “if it’s not happening for you, then you’re not doing the right thing.”  The right thing isn’t even doing the sadhanas every day, if we do it without complete surrender.  The right thing is giving all to the precise practice, as if our lives depended on it.  It is said that liberation comes to the one who yearns it as desperately as a drowning man needs air.

So now, going back to Zen for example – have you ever watched a Zen master perform a tea ceremony, rake the rock garden, or frankly even do the dishes?  There is no waste in thought or movement – all is in precise spontaneous balance – energy in form and form in energy.  Unity in duality and duality in unity, the dance of Shiva and Shakti.

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