Happy Good Friday! The full moon is super close to earth as I start writing this late at night, reflecting the sun and throwing it onto our night-time. Full Moon Days are often observed by yogis in the form of not practicing physical yoga. Many teachers give a very muted class. Ashtangis, traditionally, don’t practice at all – a good idea if they have a daily 90 minute practice as many do. Some people don’t have the energy to practice. I do... so far!
Yoga is all about stilling the fluctuations of the mind and the mind can be restless during full moon. Why is that? Well, we have mind waves or mind frequencies which are measurable, and they respond to external frequencies and influences such as the extra gravitational pull of a full moon. Commonly referred to brain waves are: Alpha, which has the frequency of around 7 to 13 pulses per second and describes a state of relaxation. Beta describes 13 to 60 pulses per second which is agitation. Theta is 4 to 7 pulses which is reduced consciousness.Delta... you've passed out at between 0.1 and 4 cycles per second. As with other body systems, out-of-balance brainwaves might give mental and emotional disorders.
How can you detect your vibrational frequencies? Here are some suggestions from a meditation book I’ve mentioned before called ‘Inner Listening’: In meditation, see if you can hear an inner sound, a shimmering, ‘high-pitched inner ringing tone’ like a white noise. A yogi ‘might feel it in the body as a delicate, pervasive vibratory quality, a humming resonance, a tingling in the hands or a subtle, energetic presence, a continuous vital current through the body.’ (I get the hands thing).
Sharman and yoga teacher Danny Paradise says: “Brain wave function slows down with the rhythm (of music) moving the brain from Beta to Alpha states and sometimes into deeper trance states of Theta and Delta. This happens as well with breath in the practices of asana and pranayama or even just walking in nature. As brain wave function slows, perception, insight, intuition and ways of seeing can deepen” (He’s teaching in this country, in Oxford, in July.)
Take it easy and enjoy the beautiful moon. The April moon is called a Pink Moon because of the pink blossom at this time of year. In India, the birth of Hanuman is celebrated by his devotees. The splits posture is named after him.
A bright, gorgeous moon makes me think of the moon over Kythera bay. I have strong memories of watching the silvery moon throwing its sparkle on the sea from Banda Landra cafe. Sometimes I go there during meditation and breathe in the night time Kapsali bay feeling. Come and drink in some of this magic with me. Details of the retreat are on my website. Valentina Candiani is the second teacher this year. There may be a third! Flights can be made cheaper if you take a budget airline from London to Athens and the cost of parking at Luton or Stansted are surprisingly affordable.
No classes on Monday. It’s Bank Holiday! Have a break! The classes on Tuesday are all booked up so I put on an extra class on Thursday at 6.00. We can make it an easy class to make up for the lack of a class on Monday! You can see class availability on my website (which I update often). The latest availability is attached to this email.
Yoga in the News
If you’ve ever been to any of the Triyoga studios, particularly our Ealing one, The Independent had an interview with the founder and owner. A View from the Top: Jonathan Sattin, founder of Triyoga, on reinventing his life and career through yoga. It came out in February. He says: “I used to smoke 40 cigarettes a day and a drink about 14 cups of coffee with two sugars each. Within three months of practising I quit all of that.” Yoga “Encouraged me to do better.”
The Telegraph says: Professional footballers are turning to yoga – here's why. “Shaking off its new-age connotations, yoga has truly hit the mainstream, and footballers are climbing fully on board. From the Premier League to Non-League, yoga is helping footballers with strength and conditioning, flexibility, recovery and mindfulness. Whether compulsory or through their own volition, yoga is firmly in”.
BBC News tells us that: Yoga 'eases my Irritable Bowel Syndrome'. It’s quite a good little piece! Have a watch.