Astanga Yoga London

23rd of May 2020
23rd May 2020

Pushpam, means flower in Sanskrit. It’s the name of our magazine. Originally my thought was for something quite small, 12 pages or so.  I asked Genny, Matt and Emma to join in and suddenly it grew. I know it takes a long time for each edition to come out. And as a team we go up and down as the process happens. For me it’s important not to have too much control. Just to let wonderful people create something. To let the writers tell their story how they want and to be paid for it. And most importantly to have happy readers.

We are always looking for success. But of course with that comes failure. Of course we pick our selves back up. So is it possible to not strive for success? How much trying is required? How much effort should I put in? Should I get out of bed? It’s not what you do or how you do it that matters but the attitude you do it in that matters. So you can have in your mind. ‘I’m doing this because it needs to be done, it’s the right thing to do, I’m doing it for…. (add name, deity, concept),  I’m doing it without expecting anything (honest gov), I’m just doing’ Any or all of or something similar that works for you.

So finally the war has ended. Bhishma is lying on his bed of arrows, waiting for the right time to die. This section of the Mahabharata is known as the Anushasana parva. The book of discipline. The yoga sutras starts with the words atha yogānushasanam. Now the discipline of yoga. It is strange that this section of the Mahabharata hasn’t become as big as the Bhagavad Gita. Within it there are many lessons that Bhishma gives to Yudhishthira. So here are just a few of them.

Not to get angry, not to lie, to give equally, to be able to forgive, to have children if possible, to be pure minded, to be friendly, to be simple and support those who need help.

Yudhishthira asks Bhishma what is the highest Dharma. And this is his answer. Ahimsa paramo dharma. Non violence is the highest dharma. Which doesn’t need much explaining. However what often gets missed out is  the next line dharma himsa tathaiva ca. For protecting dharma himsa is needed. What does that mean?  What dharma, who’s dharma? Is Bhishma saying religious war is ok? My understanding is that we should always aim for  ahimsa. But that in extreme situations violence may be a necessity.

I’m only going to do this once. Paramo means ultimate, similar to our word paramount. Well there is a company called Paramo who  make the ultimate rain coats. After you have looked them up and possibly shuddered at the price if you’re  still interested I’ll tell you why they are the best.

Don’t forget tomorrow conference 11.30am UK time

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