Sacredness

Blog post by Anjali Davidson

There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness.
— Dalai Lama

Sacredness is a designation that is created in each of our minds. You can decide, as an individual, that one object or place is sacred and another is not. However, this does not mean that the same truth applies to any other person. Sacredness can be designated as a culture, but it is the individual who worships and prays. Even the non-material aspects of our world can be sacred, such as sacred time, dances, or energy. Everything has the potential to be holy - it is how we interpret what is in front of us that changes the meaning of objects and experiences. The body can be considered a sacred structure, and many yoga practitioners come to realize this over time. The body is the vessel that allows us to experience both the physical and the spiritual. It is an intricately functioning system that keeps us as safe as it possibly can. This is an astonishing feat in this ever-changing landscape of technology, society and the environment. Sacredness is something that is entitled to reverence and respect. Is that the way you see your body? Perhaps this is a thought you could explore with an open mind. When we begin to see the sacredness in all aspects of ourselves, we see it in the world around us. Then, every moment becomes a chance for worship and prayer. 

 

Trikonasana: Triangle Pose

“Tri” means three and “Kona” means angle, so this is literally three-angle, or triangle, pose. When practiced with safe form, this pose can feel incredibly nourishing, as it stretches some of the stiffest areas of the body. Trikonasana lengthens through the hips, groins, hamstrings, calves, shoulders, chest, and along the spine. Because of the way you must balance, it strengthens the legs, knees, ankles, arms, and chest. This balancing effect also helps bring clarity to the brain and mind. Ona physical level, it helps improve digestion and reduce anxiety, stress, back pain and sciatica. Pregnant mamas-to-be may especially find low back relief in Trikonasana, and it may be safely practiced throughout the pregnancy. You can always modify your triangle pose with a block or a wall. No matter how you practice Trikonasana, feel the strength in your own body as you hold the pose. Take a moment to admire your body for being able to move in such a beautifully complex way. 

 

Trishula Mudra

We now know that in Sanskrit, “tri” means three. “Shula” is a spear, so Trishula is a spear with three points, or a trident. In Hindu theology Lord Shiva, the God of Destruction, is known for carrying a trident. In Greek mythology, it is Poseidon who carries the trident, both as a means for creating a water source, but also to “stir things up”, by way of earthquakes, tsunamis and hurricanes. So, we can see the connection between the trident and letting go of the old way of doing things. When we destroy, it is an opportunity to recreate. This mudra can also be used for protection, as you can destroy ideas or thoughts that do not serve you. This makes Trishula Mudra protective, for you are the one in control of what is destroyed in taking this hand positioning. It is best practiced in the evening. Hold the mudra and count to twenty. Watch as anxiety disappears.