Here’s another great post by our friend Anja
The Flowering Lotus
blooming even when we feel murky
The lotus flower, quite rightly, symbolises spirituality and growth. Many also see the Lotus as a symbol of a of Buddhism, of temples, even yoga studios and logos of holistic practitioners…
There is a Buddhist text called the Lotus Sutra and the flower is often mentioned in this spiritual work. The Lotus grows in mud and mucky water. However, despite this, it flourishes and grows towards the sun and turning into a beautiful flower. Just like we may have dark and unpleasant experiences, we also have the potential to flourish into amazing beings.
My favourite quote about the Lotus is from the Chandogya-Upanishad:
“In this body, the town of Spirit, there is a house shaped like a Lotus, and in this house there is a little space. One should know what is there… In that space within the heart there is as much as there is in the whole World outside. Heaven, Earth, fire, wind, sun, moon, lightning, stars; whatever is and is not, everything is there. That space is the home of Spirit. Self is there beyond decay and death, sin and sorrow, hunger and thirst. Self stays in the heart. Who knows this enjoys the Kingdom of Heaven.”
Now, the lotus posture, padmasana, may look like a pretzel and completely out of our body’s comfort zone. But even as you sit cross-legged, on your heels or in a chair for meditation think of a very steady seat, feeling complete grounded. You can imagine your hips and legs being steady and releasing downwards. From this foundation let your spine rise, the crown of the head lift as if towards the Sky or the Sun. Just like a lotus flower rising from the mud. Bring your awareness to your heart centre. Meditating on the quote form the Chandogya Upanishad know that everything you need is right there.
Anja enjoy teaching yoga and share the knowledge of a yogic and ayurvedic lifestyle in SW London (Streatham, Balham, Chelsea and Parson’s Green). You can join us for a 2 1/2 hour Spring Clean Yoga Workshop in South London Sunday the 17th of April. Please look at www.yogaembodied.com for further details on workshops, clinics, timetable and listen (and practise to) to a full class online. Sign Up for her newsletter andemail if you would like to her to discuss a specific topic or yoga posture.
Anja is yoga teacher specialising in Vinyasa Flow (all levels), Pregnancy Yoga and Postnatal Yoga. She has several qualifications including teacher training programs with Barbara Harding, Sivananda and Seane Corn (Vinyasa Flow). She also had the pleasure of attending teacher workshops with Shiva Rea. Her pregnancy, postnatal and perinatal yoga training has been inspired by many teachers including Françoise Barbira Freedman, Birthlight, Uma Dinsmore Tuli and Claire Missingham’s specialist Teacher Training courses.
She has a BSc and PGDip in Ayurveda from Middlesex University. This qualifies her to practice as an Ayurvedic practitioner, advising on herbs, lifestyle, diet as well as giving body treatments including massage.
Visit www.yogaembodied.com for further detail and to sign up for her newsletter. You can also find her email@example.com, Twitter (twitter.com/anjayogini) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/yogaembodied)