Yoga with a feminine flavour…………….. 7 Living questions to help keep it juicy on the mat
I stopped going to standard yoga classes years ago, why? Because most of them were all so standard, my own practice was always soooooo much juicier and more alive and I think I have realized why…
Yes I could learn some useful physical techniques in these standard yoga classes, but what matters to me is that yoga gives me an experience of UNION. Let us not forget that yoga means union!
For me this is the union of life force and spirit, of feminine and masculine, of little old me and all that is…And I use my time on the mat to have an open, playful exploration of what this feels like….In this body… right now.
Breaking free of little old me…..
Our yoga practice is an opportunity to get completely out of our heads, and right into the squelchy deep depths of the temple of our bodies to where there is no longer a separate ‘me’ trying/ judging/head f***ing. The yogic techniques have the power to remind us that we are not separate and bring us to back to the simplicity of energy in motion, vibrating with love, flowing in harmony with all that is.
Something was amiss…
And yet in the mainstream yoga classes I would notice that many people did not seem to be experiencing this- there was so much EFFORTING going on in the room around me! What I noticed is that people seemed to be doing yoga with a fixed idea of alignment, they had a goal in mind that kept them in their heads, and they were not being radically touched/worked/ transformed and nourished by their practice.I could not help but notice that something seriously weird was going on in the mainstream yoga world…
The missing ingredient
I couldn’t get it, what was going on here? What was missing? I reflected at length and came to some conclusions and here they are.
The first realization was that I have been practicing in a feminine way (not as in feminine-good versus masculine-bad but just very different in its essence and expression)
So what does a feminine yoga practice look like?
It is responsive-not goal orientated.
it is playful-not serious….,
it is sensuous- (it really is mega juicy)…
it is natural-I go with what I feel….
it is spontaneous…..i throw out the game plan and take intuitively guided detours and perhaps most importantly….
I listen to my body rather than dictate to it and manipulate it.
SHE who knows
In my yoga practice I listen deeply within for guidance, I invite life to express itself through me, rather than trying to fit into a shape, I listen into how my body wants to move, I give my attention and devotion and trust to SHE WHO KNOWS within me and let HER lead the way.
So that is why I have absolutely no trouble getting on the mat every single morning, because I just get on there and MAKE LOVE TO EXISTANCE through the medium of my body.
If you want to jump on this train and use your time on the mat to truly explore and experience union, grace and sensual bliss- then here are some ‘Living questions’ that can act as a guide. The following are little signposts to take you IN.
1. Are my feet having a intimate relationship with the ground?
Are they? Are my feet drinking in the texture of the ground beneath, are they in dynamic relationship with the earth? Are they responsive or are they fixed? How do my feet inform and activate my legs and my pelvic floor? Do I feel an upflow of energy from the ground? If not, how can I engage and open to invite in more life force into my body through my feet?
2. Is my belly completely relaxed?
Or am I unconsciously holding it in? and in the process blocking the free flow of juicy energy area in my hara. Do I have an idea of how my belly should look? How does it feel to soften my belly and accept and celebrate it as it is? How does it feel to stop and touch my belly and invite in more breath to massage me internally?
3. Is my breathing effortless and juicy?
Am I available for life force to flow naturally and fully through my being? Am I trying to breathe deeply or am I allowing life force to light me up on the inside? Can I receive the breath like I would my beloved (actual or imagined), welcoming it, responding to it, receiving it, soaking it up into all my cells?
4. Does my awareness include the physical and energetic field of my sexual organs?
Or are they cut off from the whole, am I making the most of the dynamic free flow of sexual energy that, when awakened and welcomed, can feed aliveness and gentle power into my yoga practice? How does my pelvic floor and sexual organs communicate with the rest of my body? Am I present to my sexuality, inviting it along for the ride? How does a well-placed yoni squeeze (or male equivalent…) enhance the quality of my movements and feeling?
5. Am I feeling into the needs of the moment or am I following a formula?
What does my body need right now? What is the ‘medicine’ of the moment? Am I rushing along because I want to get to the end of my fixed routine? Am I making space for surprises, detours, emotional releases and ecstatic bliss?
5.Am I a channel, am I a vessel, am I a cosmic dancer? Or am I a personality trying to get a posture right?
Which one are you? When you become the personality- how do you come back to being a channel asap?
Hint-intention, deep listening, an exuberant sigh to get you back into surrender-mode.
6.Is Shiva (consciousness) and Shakti (pure life force energy) meeting in this body right now?
If you do asana without a meditation practice to compliment it you take the risk of staying in the realm of the superficial…if you do physical yoga practices you NEED to balance it with stillness- without Shiva, Shakti loses her deep ground. In movement, keep the presence and in the stillness keep the sense of freshness.
7. Do you LOVE it?
If you don’t love it, you are not in union, bring the love back in by making your practice personal, beautiful and intimate. I recommend using your yoga time as a living enquiry, use your body as a laboratory and invite body and soul, heaven and earth, Shiva and Shakti, sex and spirit and ‘you’ and the Divine, to UNITE in movement and stillness.
I invite you to discover the bliss that comes when you drop the effort of aiming to do and instead find something deep, spontaneous, juicy and surprising arise from deep within to guide the way instead…
I hope this inspires this to ‘juice up’ your yoga practice. In the WSF workshops and retreats we practice Sacred Feminine yoga with asana and meditation practiced with the feminine qualities of receptivity and succulence. For more info…