The Principles of Aerodynamic Yoga
In order to be aware we need first to be able to observe. Our eyes, the organs of observing or seeing, feed us information from the outside in. We learn to make judgements about what we see and, based on these judgements, we form opinions. What do we observe? Mostly other people. Humans are fascinated by other humans and feel a compelling need to compare themselves with others. However, as our powers of observation of others increases, so our power of observation of ourselves decreases. In turn we are concerned with what others think of us, which is an invaluable tool for progressing and adapting within society. Still, the focus is on the outside of ouselves. We cannot control or change the way others act or think, even if we can influence their actions and opinions. Each individual controls his/her own mind. So, awareness in Yoga refers to awareness of our self; our physical and mental self; our actions and our thoughts. You Observe to Gain Awareness. Moreover, you cannot separate the physical action from the mind’s instruction, unless you are referring to a lack of awareness. So the principle aim of Yoga is not to unite the mind and body but rather to improve awareness of this innate connection. Aerodynamic Yoga extends this awareness further to the energy connection.
Energy is the law of life. Every process that takes place in living beings, in nature and in the universe as a whole is due to energy and part of an energetic chain reaction: Sir Isaac Newton’s 3rd Law of Motion states that for every action or force in nature there is an equal or opposite reaction. Essentially energy is movement or motion: Newton’s Law was a Law of energy. There is movement everywhere; molecular movement. All matter consists of atoms or molecules in constant motion. Our entire Universe is full of molecules and so are we.
So, WE ARE ENERGY. Molecules constantly moving inside of us – exchanges of gases and fluids, hormone release, digestion, metabolism, all physical movement, thought and speech, all as a result of energy interaction and integration throughout the physical and thinking self. You need energy to make more energy; you cannot make energy from nothing, and you cannot destroy energy; it never ceases to exist.
As humans we need a minimum energy level to survive. However, our demand for energy is over and above this essential level. Aerodynamic Yoga concerns itself with our efficient resource and use of this energy and with how to maximise our energy potential. This can only come about through increasing our awareness of energy.
Individual nature versus human nature
It’s interesting to see that when a group of humans congregate in the same place at the same time, essentially sharing the same moment and therefore experience we do not react in the same way. This is because we are individuals through our nature and perception. Our nature relates to our inborn characteristics which are just varying degrees of all human characteristics. Our perception is based on our character and our previous life experiences and is therefore limited. We make choices, respond or react to situations based on our perception of the experience and as these reactions are energy based their outcome may determine whether or not the reaction was energy efficient or inefficient. When the reaction is energy inefficient it is known as DRAG.
In Aerodynamic Yoga drag is a reference to the obstacles* that were first identified over 4000 years ago by the Indian sage Patanjali when he wrote The Yoga Sutras (*1-30). Among these obstacles we find ill health, laziness, mental inertia, cravings and addictions, mistaken ideas and beliefs, doubt and pride, lack of perseverance and setbacks and finally disillusion and loss of faith. They absorb our useful energy and weigh or slow us down. In our Aerodynamic Yoga practice the postures create challenging situations which provoke reactions that are linked to our individual nature. Like a scientist, we can observe how much energy a ‘bad’ reaction uses and experiment with different reactions finding the most efficient in terms of energy use. We learn from experience. We are human and we will make ‘mistakes’. But because we are human we are also driven to solve problems. This is the key to the success of Aerodynamic Yoga. This constant striving to solve and sort out, query and question, explore and experiment, try and test, a desire to make better and keep improving. We yearn to learn.
Our whole life is, essentially a work in progress. It’s constant change, perpetual motion. You may arrive but you never stay; there’s always a new destination.
A new chapter, a new challenge, a new chance.