surya namaskara

>>>to receive an audio file of the yoga surya namaskara puja at the Gedong Gandhi Ashram, please send a request to; Ahimsaka.satya@gmail.com

The audiofile is a live recording of a class of the sun salutations at an outdoor yoga shala. It contains a short warming up, and 20 rounds of the surya namaskara; the classical and a variation>>>

surya namaskara
salutations to the sun
classical sun salutations;
In line with the ashram tradition, started by the founder Ibu Gedong her self, every morning the ashram members would do a certain amount of sun salutations on the beach. Unfortunately the beach disappeared, but the sun is still shining, and the salutations are happening in the bale yoga now. Ahimsaka is leading this session every morning between 7 and 8 am, for the ashram members, the guests and everyone who wants to join.
In yoga the sun is represented by the pingala nadi or surya nadi, the pranic channel which carries the vital life giving force. This dynamic group of asana’s is not regarded as being a traditional part of hatha yoga practice as it was added to the original group at a later time. The surya namaskara has been handed down from the enlightened sages of the Vedic Age, and is more ancient then the yoga practice. It is an effective way of loosening up, stretching, massaging and toning all the joints, muscles and internal organs of the body. Its versatility and application make it one of the most useful methods of inducing a healthy, vigorous and active life while, at the same time, preparing for spiritual awakening and expansion of awareness.
The surya namaskara is regulating the solar energy of the body creating balanced energy in the body at both mental and physical levels. Its composition is of three elements; form, energy and rhythm. The twelve asana’s are the physical matrix around which the form of the practice is woven.The asana’s generate prana, life force the subtle energy. With the dynamic movement of the asana’s the prana is transformed into pattern for the body/mind and generates a transforming force which gives rise to a more dynamic, healthier, balanced life.
The surya namaskara makes the body/mind ready for a new day, capable of dealing with all the surprises (the good ones and the lesser good ones) of life. The combination of breath, focus, asana and mantra this system is a good representation of what yoga is in a nutshell. With 12 poses it tells the story of the path of yoga.
Ahimsaka teaches the classical sun salutations according the Bihar School of Yoga, and is similar to the sivananda tradition, and most yoga styles. Finding your own comfortable and natural pose is for ahimsaka more important then setting the student into a fixed pose. During class personal modifications are encouraged. Exploration, body/mind/breath awareness, keeping an open mind and observation or most important. From there the student can reflect, learn and if desired change physical and mental habits. The class consists of a warming up and 12 sets of sun salutations and relaxation, and take about an hour. The 12 sets consists of 6 classical sets, and 6 with added (optional) variations.

classical surya namaskara asana and most commonly used names*;

  1. pranamasana/tadasana/samastihi (mountain pose, prayer pose)
  2. hasta utthanasana (raised hands pose)
  3. padahastasana/utthanasana (forward bend/hand to foot pose)
  4. ashwa sanchalanasana/anjenyasana (low lunge, equestrian pose)
  5. parvatasana/adho-mukha-savasana-(mountain pose,downward dog)
  6. ashtanga namaskara (8 points prostrating pose)
  7. bhujangasana (cobra pose)
  8. parvatasana/adho-mukha-savasana-(mountainpose,downward dog)
  9. ashwa sanchalanasana/anjenyasana (low lunge, equestrian pose)
  10. padahastasana/utthanasana (forward bend)
  11. hasta utthanasana  (raised hands pose)
  12. pranamasana/tadasana/samastihi (mountainpose, prayer pose)

The variations added are modifying pose 5 into ardha chandrasana, half moon pose and pose 9 into a standing twist.
Mantra’s accompanying the movements

  1. om mitraya namaha  (salutations to the friend of all)
  2. om ravaye namaha (salutations to the shining one)
  3. om surya namaha (salutations to he who induces activity)
  4. om bhanave namaha (salutations to he who illumines)
  5. om khagaya namaha (salutations to he who moves quickly in the sky)
  6. om pushne namaha (salutations to the giver of strength)
  7. om hiranya garbhaya namaha (salutations to the golden cosmic self)
  8. om marichaye namaha (salutations to the lord of dawn)
  9. om adityaya namaha (salutations to the son of aditi, the cosmic mother)
  10. om savitre namaha (salutations to the lord of creation)
  11. om arkaya namaha  (salutations to he who is fit to be praised)
  12. om bhaskaraya namaha (salutations to he who leads to enlightenment)

the mantra (sanskrit for that what protects the mind) creates a back ground sound (noise), preventing other thoughts to rise, they create a vibration for the breath, a rhythm for the mind and a pattern for the body together with the movements.  The effect is a calming almost hypnotizing for the mind, making the movements go with ease and seemingly without effort.
*often different asana’s have the same name, the same asana’s different names and translations into english made it even more confusing

ahimsaka sun salutations 01

ahimsaka sun salutations 02

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