Astanga Yoga London

18th of May
18th May 2020

Today was a bit of a sad day. I know Pattabhi Jois/Guruji has now become he who shouldn’t be named but even bad people need some respect on their death. At the time I had just finished teaching and I stepped out of the shala and Shiva called. I new something was up as it wasn’t often Shiva called. Shiva for those of you who don’t know is a man who lives in Gokulam, Mysore and has been helping students with accommodation, trips, money changing and storing all their trunks of shit. He looks after enumerate dogs. He has always been very kind to us. I could just phone him up and say ‘Shiva I’m coming on such and such flight’. ‘Yes boss’ was his reply and I knew everything would be sorted. A car to pick me up from the airport, a good flat, a scooter ready and a smiling face to great me. There are many things I miss from India and mostly it’s the people. People make places.

We’ve just finished our third jigsaw puzzle. Little things have kept us grounded. And although we want big changes and new and shinny gifts it is the small everyday things that bring us back to ourselves, to the present that matter.

We’re still in the middle of the Mahabharata war. And things are getting rather out of hand. Rules that were agreed have been broken, the two armies have started fighting at night. Krishna asks Bhima to summon his rakshasa son Ghatakotcha. Because at night rakshasas are more powerful. Instantly he arrives and starts causing havoc to the Kaurava forces. Eventually Duryodhana can take no more losses and asks his friend Karna to use his magical spear that he’d been given by Indra. At first Karna is reluctant as he’d intended to use it against Arjuna. But after seeing how many deaths Ghatakotcha was causing and there was no other way to stop him, he through his magical spear. But even as the spear ripped through Gahatakotcha’s heart he grew immense and fell towards the Kauravas, killing many as he died. Bhima was greatly saddened by his son’s death, but Krishna was happy because Karna’s magical spear was now used up.

So now on the 15th day the Pandavas concentrated their energy on killing Drona, who already killed Drupada (Draupadi’s father) and Virata (the king where the Pandavas hid out for a year). But how to kill someone as skilled as Drona? Krishna said ‘he is so attached to his son, that if he thinks his son is dead he will lay down his own weapons’. And so the Pandava army started a rumour that Ashwatthama, Drona’s son was dead. Drona was not sure and so he asked Yudhishthira who was always truthful. But before this all happened Krishna instructed Bhima to kill and elephant also called Ashwathama. So when Drona asks Yudhishthira ‘if Ashwathama has been killed? Yudhishthira replies ‘Yes’ and then whispers ‘the elephant’. And with that smile lie Drona gives up hope and lays down his weapons and Draupadi’s brother Dhrishtadyumna severed Drona’s head. It’s said Drona was already dead. That even though he was born a Brahmin he followed the wrong dharma and became a ksatriya/warrior.

Ashwathama was furious such a trick had been played and released a magical arrow shooting fire. Krishna got all the Pandava army to drop their weapons and so the magical arrow touch no one as it would only killed those who were armed.

The war has become more and more nasty as it progressed. As victory became a desperate goal. Anger always leads to much pain for both…

 

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