Saturday Morning Slow Deep Stretch


This session is relaxing, but not necessarily easy because the poses are held for a long time.  Even for most beginners the poses are easily adopted, but holding a stretch without any muscle engagement for up to five minutes can be emotionally as well as physically challenging.  That’s why Yin Yoga master Paul Grilley says, “Feelings of vulnerability and fragility are a sign of correct yin style practice.”  Of course, most of the yoga done around the world is yang yoga.  It’s muscle oriented.  Yin Yoga (or what is more commonly known as Slow Deep Stretch) is ligament oriented.  But the real yoga of Slow Deep Stretch comes from energy experiencing.  We experience energy in context of the way our life force feels.  People who don’t experience their life force pleasurably on a regular basis become numb.  Sadly, it’s a common state in our society.  If you want to feel how pleasurable it is just to experience your life force, come a practice Yin Yoga.  Yes, in the beginning it will be difficult to feel the effects of how you’ve been living.  But things change.  With Yin Yoga we don’t focus on what we have to gain from doing yoga, but the truth is that stretching works miracles.  We become sensitive to our life force again, and suddenly it makes sense to be able to describe the different ways that energy moves through us.  Yin yogis speak of energy feeling “earthy, watery, fiery, metally, or woody.”  Those are the Taoist elements.  Some people can sense them from the first time they start stretching.  But if that’s not the case, then you’re numb to the pleasure of existence, and the practice is all the more important.  If your connective tissue is in a challenged state, your initial experience with Yin Yoga will be challenging.  That’s where most people start.  Don’t worry.  With practice, the emotional truthfulness deepens and we experience our original goodness.  And nothing has to be fixed.  The key is to accept what we are feelings.  And even flexible people need help with that, so we all start where we start.  Then, with each practice, we start with a sense of linking up with a part of us that has already given up striving.  That allows us to appreciate our own existence no matter what.  We’re not making ourselves a problem any more.  We’re not continuing the idea that we need fixing (that otherwise continues to our dying breath, never having let us experience life as it is because we spent life trying to fix ourselves, but really just making ourselves a problem).  So let’s not make ourselves a problem starting now.  It’s unnecessary since, right now, we can naturally and effortlessly link up with a sense of original goodness.  In short, then, Yin Yoga is about allowance.  You can allow yourself to come in and practice Yin Yoga every Saturday at 8:30am.  The class ends at 10:00.