Kosher Sutra: “Pharoah dreamed he was standing by the Nile” (Gen 41:1)
Soul Solution: Find balance, spread your light.
Posture: Splits preparation.
Body Benefit: Flexibility in legs.
Do you ever have one of those weeks when everything gets busy at once? It never rains but it pours, three buses come along at once and it’s almost impossible to get the balance. The week can seem to be good or bad, but it’s always certainly one of extremes.
Pharoah is a man of extremes. He has the ability to grant life or death, his word is law and he was elevated to the status of a deity. In the dream that he related to Joseph, Pharaoh was standing by the River Nile, which was considered to be another Egyptian god. His dreams were extreme: seven fat cows, seven thin cows, healthy corn and thinning corn. Joseph had arrived to get the balance.
Our yoga practice is destined to bring balance to the body. We become aware of the way we are standing and whether we are balancing evenly on our feet during standing postures. We bring attention to the shape of our body and whether we’ve struck a healthy line in our eating and exercise habits. As we focus on the alignment of our hips, torso and shoulders we can bring healing to physical pains that would otherwise recur throughout our life.
Pharoah sees only the physical aspects of the world which is why his dreams are rooted in agriculture and animals, and he stands by a river that is the symbol of physical wealth in Egypt. Joseph’s dreams begin in the fields but raise to the stars because he had a strong spiritual alignment which supported him through difficult times. Our Bibliyoga practice is intended to heal our body and our soul, to bring healing and balance through our physique by continually remembering that we are more than just our body. Yoga means ‘yoking’ and we are using this method as a tool for yoking or connecting with God.
Stand tall, dream big and be well.
Splits Post (Hanumanasana) - HOW TO DO IT
We’ll focus on preparation for the splits rather than the full posture as such. In Sanksrit it’s known as Monkey Pose, but we’ll just get into the first stage of the pose as seen in the photo (although you don’t have to dress as the Lloyd-Webber version of Pharaoh).
i. Begin by resting on your knees.
ii. Step your left foot forward and straighten your leg.
iii. Ensure that your hips are evenly facing forwards (ie so in the photo, I’d need to bring the right hip further forwards.
iv. Inhale and as you exhale, extend your torso over your straight left leg. You’ll feel a stretch on the underside of your left leg as you stretch the hamstring, thighs and glutes.
v. If you are comfortable there, sit your buttocks on your right foot and fold forwards. This is called ‘Mahamudra’ or ‘The Great Seal.
vi. Practice this whole sequence on both sides, and then if you are comfortable, experiment with moving into full splits. Or just repeat stages i)-iv).
This weekend Marcus is teaching and performing in Memphis, Tennessee. To receive your free weekly Kosher Sutra and to discover more about the combination of Jewish wisdom with dynamic yoga, check out www.bibliyoga.com. Watch the Chanukah Yoga Warrior Video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khhTceCYX54.