Clearing The Little Rivers
The Second Series of the Ashtanga system is called Nadi Shodana, “the clearing of the little rivers,” the subtle channels through which our creative forces can move. The practice is designed to remove obstacles from those channels, to open us to a wider spectrum of experience. The obstacles in question are the sediment of past experience, fragments of memory that were never fully integrated into our minds. These fragments form blisters in our subtle bodies that limit the flow of our experience and form the bedrock of our conditioning. The practice of the Second Series is designed to help us dislodge these fragments, so we can release them into the blazing fire of our awareness, energizing the subtle body, and dissolving them back into the emptiness from which they arose.
In this Intensive, we explore the rhythm and flow of the Second Series, exploring not only at the postures, but the dynamic sequences of breath, movement and awareness to which they belong. We develop strategies for working constructively with more difficult forms, and we learn to adapt the postures to our unique bodies and circumstances, so that we can practice the series mindfully, and avail ourselves of its potency, without harming ourselves in the process.
To participate in this intensive, you are not required or expected to be already versed in the Second Series. The only requirements are that you are grounded in the First Series, in the sense that you have practiced the First regularly for some time, have absorbed the grounding effect of that practice, and you are ready to explore this more stimulating sequence. People with injuries and other limitations who otherwise meet these requirements are absolutely welcome to attend.
Charlottesville | March 11-15, 2020
Turin | May 29–June 2, 2020
8:00 AM – 10:00 AM: Asana
10:30 AM – 12:00 PM: Pranayama and Visualization
1:30 PM – 4:00 PM: Alignment
The program will involve guided morning asana sessions, focusing on the postures of the Second Series, followed by pranayama and subtle body visualization. Each afternoon, we workshop a different sequence from the Second Series, exploring strategies for overcoming obstacles, looking closely at the movement patterns that connect the forms, and rediscovering the internal alignment that brings the postures alive.
This intensive is designed to support Second Series practitioners of all kinds, from those who are just learning, to those who have been refining the sequence for years. You are not required to have any special proficiency in the Second Series in order to attend. However, you are expected to be grounded in the First Series. This means that you have practiced the First Series steadily for some reasonable amount of time, and you have absorbed the stabilizing effects of the series into your body and mind. You might not be able to perform every posture with exemplary alignment, but you are stable enough to undergo the stimulation of the next sequence. People with physical injuries and other limitations who meet these requirements are absolutely welcome to attend.