Poco a Poco

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Poco a Poco

“Poco a poco” is a Spanish phrase that I’ve used noticeably a lot in class here in Barcelona. Translated in English it means “little by little.”

I’ve used it in all sorts of contexts, referencing the pace that we learn to practice, the depth in which the postures are taken, the time it takes for the body to open, the steps one takes as we move forward in practice.

The essence of the words, however, are the same. With practice, we want to go slowly, take a little at a time, savoring each soulful step. This is a sound way to practice.

PHOTO: Panoramic view of the Espacio Vacio, the daily setting for Pazzifica Ashtanga Yoga mysore classes here in Gracia, Barcelona. I take time with Marta in the end. After a month of practice, she is learning janu sirsasana. It’s a joy to teach the series in this way. It feels really right to be able to help someone grow their practice slowly with a lot of care and love over a period of time.

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The Mysore Movie

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The Mysore Movie

The mysore space is like a movie. The independent kind with its own special narrative woven into one frame, a unified theme: practice.

Each mat contains a different story, a different protagonist. A different antagonist too. Some are dramas, others are comedies, and since this is ashtanga, the thriller and action variety are very much alive in the mix.

I am not the director, though I come to assist here and there. Somehow, I have been tasked to piece the montage together, to hold the space in which all the stories can run their course, tell their tales.

Really, though, each story is independently created. And together, as a whole, it is a collaborative process, act of co-creation.

And like many art house films, it does not have a typical ending. It just goes on and on…epic little stories, both continuous and totally new each and every morning!

PHOTO: Second day of the month of February here at Pazzifica Ashtanga Yoga, Barcelona. It’s always exciting to see the room fill at the start of the month. It’s a joy to see more and more of the regulars recommitting to regular practice.

Naked Truth

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There are times that when I get to the end of practice and there is only me, the mat, and an empty room.

For a moment, nothing else, no one else exists. Everything has fallen away, shifted from the mind and body, dropped during a series of movements, or melted away by the breath. If it doesn’t drop away so easily, the practice finds a way to peel it back or to pull it out. Weight is shed.

And in the end, there’s this feeling of lightness, of nakedness. Beautifully, wonderfully naked, it is easy to sit with myself.

Photo: Last student, for the morning session, Alejandro coming into finishing sitting postures. Morning mysore practice is Monday to Friday, 7am-9:30am here in Pazzifica * Ashtanga Yoga, Espacio Vacio, Plaza Verreina.

Taller de Yoga “Desde el centro a la expansión”

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Como cada primer domingo del mes los invitamos a nuestro taller de práctica y teoría, una mañana de clase guiada de la primera serie y una charla que nos ayudará a profundizar y y comprender otros aspectos de nuestra práctica de yoga.

En esta ocasión Kaz ha querido compartir su pasión por la literatura y los textos sagrados del Bhagavad Gita con nosotros en una oportunidad única que espero todos pueda aprovechar.

“Desde el centro a la expansión ”

El Bhagavad Gita, un texto atesorado desde la tradición del yoga, se inicia con un héroe en crisis. Arjuna se enfrenta a su batalla más dura, y justo momentos antes, duda, pierde su determinación y arroja su arma. Su amigo, aliado y maestro, Krishna , comparte con él las enseñanzas de yoga, le ayuda a encontrar su centro, para que pueda seguir adelante y enfrentar los retos del futuro.

Pero, ¿Cómo nos conectamos con nuestro centro?, ¿Cómo usamos el centro para expandirnos y crecer en todas las direcciones?

Programa:
Conversaremos brevemente algunos principios claves a aplicar en nuestra clase guiada, exploraremos algunas de las enseñanzas atesoradas de Krishna, con énfasis en la pregunta: ¿cómo encontrar nuestro centro en este torbellino de mundo en constante cambio?
La clase cerrará con el canto de mantras que celebran la energía de Krishna, de integración, el yoga.

English Description:

“From the Center, We Expand”

The Bhagavad Gita, a treasured text from the yoga tradition, starts with a hero in crisis. Arjuna is faced with his toughest battle. And just moments before, he doubts, looses his resolve, throws down his weapon. His friend, ally and teacher, Krishna shares with him the teachings of yoga, helps him find his center, so that he can move forward and face the challenges ahead.

How do we connect with our center? How do we use the center to expand and grow in all directions?

Program: We will briefly discuss some key principles that we will apply in our guided half-primary class. Afterwards, we will explore some of Krishna’s treasured teachings, particularly how do we find our center in this whirling world of change–closing by chanting mantras celebrating the energy of Krishna, of integration, of yoga.
Fecha:
NEW DATE: Domingo 2 de MARZO
8.30-11.30 hrs.

Precio:
20 euros
25 euros ( para quienes no son alumnos de Pazzifica* Ashtanga Yoga)

RESERVA TU PLAZA! 🙂
pazzificayoga@gmail.com

Little Lights

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Little Lights

In the morning class, I start with minimal dim lighting. An alabaster lamp in the corner, one overhead in the back by the doors, and the candles and fairy lights on the altar. Not a lot. Yet over the last two mornings with the room’s electricity not working, I realized how much illumination we had.

Monday, I arrived to find that power was out, luckily Paz had left me with a bag of tea lights and I resorted to sprinkling some 10 candles around the edge of the room. It was amazing to see the room glow, dim as it was. The lights just popped out in the early morning darkness, reminding me that it’s in the darkest moments that we most appreciate the smallest glimmers of light.

And then as dawn comes, streaming inside through the windows, these little lights cease to work in the bright and then they are forgotten. But by then, they’d already lived out their purpose.

These times, when you are given little light, do not fill your mind with worry or frustration that you cannot see clearly, instead allow yourself to see differently. Allow yourself to go into the quietness of such precious little light.

Photo: Pazzifica Ashtanga Yoga at Vacio Espacio by candle light. Happy to report that power is back on as of this evening. We may continue to play with candle light practices but heating will most definitely be on tomorrows’s agenda!

View From Above

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Gray Skies

Trek up a mountain–or scale a building or climb a tree, anywhere high-like–and survey the world around you.

How big it feels from that vantage point. How much more expansive the surrounds appear from such heights.

Sometimes it’s not the world that changes but rather how we see things.

Practice is a process of moving forward, except often times it’s an uphill battle. But then, over time, as you look around you, the way you see things changes.

Classes resume after full moon and weekend. Morning Mysore: Monday-Friday 7:00-9:30; Evening Mysore Monday & Wednesday 18:00-20:00, Tuesday & Thursday 18:30-20:15. Espacia Vacio is located off Placa Verreina in Gracia. http://www.pazzifica.com

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Trek a una montaña – o escalar un edificio o trepar a un árbol, en cualquier lugar de alta como – y contemplar el mundo que te rodea.

¿Qué tan grande que se siente de esa posición ventajosa? ¿Cuánto más expansiva la rodea aparece desde tales alturas?

A veces no es el mundo que cambia, pero cómo vemos las cosas.

La práctica es un proceso de avanzar, salvo muchas veces es una batalla cuesta arriba. Pero luego, con el tiempo, como se mira a tu alrededor, la forma de ver las cosas cambia.

Reinicio de clases después de la luna llena y de fin de semana. Mañana Mysore: Lunes-Viernes 07:00-09:30; Mysore Tarde Lunes y Miércoles 18:00-20:00, Martes y Jueves 18:30-20:15. Espacia Vacio en Placa Verreina en Gracia. http://www.pazzifica.com
Photo: Surveying the village and farmland below Castilla de Montoliu, Catalan, Spain.