Friday, June 17, 2011

Mayurasana: the stories of why this peacock pose is sooo tough!!

Really, it is one of the most elegant pose even though my execution may not quite give that impression:)
Though Amitabh jumps into it(which is not my preference for entering any pose), from sheer strenghth and focus, he holds it high and very elegantly.He also has a lot of control over it, and does not crash down from it, as happens with some new comers to the pose.  He claims I taught him the pose:) But actually, sometimes he does every new pose I ask of him, with such finish, that I wonder if he has learnt yoga elsewhere, before he came to my class (which he anycase visits rather infrequently I must add:)  Sharmishta has started struggling with it, and gets it for a fraction of a second. But it just a heart beat away for her, and will be there, for sure, if she comes to class more regularly (I am writing this, coz I know she reads this blog:)
Mayank has cracked it, and now trying to hold it for long. As also Sai who moves into the second variation, with the forehead to the ground and begins to rest in the modified peacock:) I have my days with the peacock. If I have drunk a lot of water, or had something to drink even half hour before attempting, I wobble. I also wobble in it during PMS when everything about me is soft with pain:) But otherwise, on days when I hold it strong, I get a real high... it is that sort of pose. Never satisfying, always teasing, wanting more from u in terms of strenght, focus, breath control and elegance. It is one of those poses u simply cannot take for granted.

I am sure there are several stories of peacocks, to make this pose even more lyrical, but I like these aspects of it, from Indian mythology, to add substance to a pose that is already so full of it!
Peacocks are said to have been so arrogant that god made their feet dirty, so that it could see it, often (when pecking about dearies) and be humbled and reminded that not all of it is perfect. Is that why this pose gives so much trouble? And is never deeply satisfying??!! 

The other bit is where the peacock is Lord Shanmugha's mount. He is the brother to Lord Ganesha, and Lord Shiva's son, and is worshipped more fervently in southern India where he is believed to have been an older deity referred to as Skanda and whose images are said to be part of the archeological findings from the Sangam period . He  uses the peacock as his mount. He is a warlord and the peacock is seen as the only most potent enemy of the snake. In  certain interpretations (as also in the snakes twirling in Lord Shiva's body)the slithering snakes are negative patterns in us (vrittis, meaning mental wave patterns; and kleshas, ingrained habits of behavior that are obstacles in the path of yoga) that needs to be curbed as we move up towards spiritual divinity.... 

So, yes, that part of the peacock may also be why the pose is so difficult to practice??
Worth thinking about...

Happy sadhana !!

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