Translations

Okay, for any gym rats who happen to be working their backbends deeply, the translation is thus:

The soreness feels like second day onset in the rectus abdominis after a session with lots of weighted negative reps.

Which, by the way, would be almost impossible to do to your abs without dragging your hip flexors into the mix. So the experience of working into the backbends is leaving me with ab soreness and totally relaxed hip flexors, and it feels unnatural through the filter of my previous experience. I mean, think about it: to work the abs (in hanging leg raises in the gym — or in climbing, where you’d hang on to a hold with your hands and then pull your legs up) you generally pull up your legs. In urdhva dhanurasana or dropbacks or stand-ups, the legs are stabilized (hopefully!) and you don’t crunch them up into the abs.

Suffice it to say, this feeling would be hard to explain to a bodybuilder.

***

Yesterday at led-class-that-turned-into-Mysore, we practiced chanting the sutras from 2.29 – 2.36. Have I mentioned I am a huge chanting slacker? Yeah.

II.29 yama-niyamasana-pranayama-pratyahara-dharana-dhyana-samadhayo stav angani

The eight components of yoga are external discipline, internal discipline, posture, breath regulation, concentration, meditative absorption, and integration.

II.30 ahimsa-satyasteya-brahmacaryaparigraha yamah

The five external disciplines are not harming, truthfulness, not stealing, celibacy, and not being acquisitive.

II.31 ete jati-desa-kala-samayanavacchinnah sarva-bhauma mahavratam

These universals, transcending birth, place, era, or circumstance, constitute the great vow of yoga.

II.32 sauca-santosa-tapah-svadhyayesvara-pranidhanani niyamah

The five internal disciplines are bodily purification, contentment, intensity, self-study, and orientation toward the ideal of pure awareness.

II.33 vitarka-badhane pratipaksa-bhavanam

Unwholesome thoughts can be neutralized by cultivating wholesome ones.

II.34 vitarka himsadayah krta-karitanumodita lobha-krodha-moha-purvaka mrdu-madhyadhimatra duhkajnanananta-phala iti pratipaksa-bhavanam

We ourselves may act upon unwholesome thoughts, such as wanting to harm someone, or we may cause or condone them in others; unwholesome thoughts may arise from greed, anger, or delusion; they may be mild, moderate, or extreme; but they never cease to ripen into ignorance and suffering. This is why one must cultivate wholesome thoughts.

II.35 ahimsa-pratisthayam tat-sannidhau vaira-tyagah

Being firmly grounded in non-violence creates an atmosphere in which others can let go of their hostility.

II.36 satya-pratisthayam kriya-phalasrayatvam

For those grounded in truthfulness, every action and its consequences are imbued with truth.

Translation is Chip Hartranft’s.

I am astonished at how well people at the shala learn chants. I can hear them and stumble through them a bazillion times and still not have a clue. Except for a very few. The Asatoma rocks, and I am a huge fan of verses 2.29, 2.30, and 2.32. I even sing them in the car. But in the end, my proficiency is hugely lacking. Just reading back through the ones I’ve listed here gives me flashbacks to the millions of times Sanskrit Scholar has gone over them with all of us.

Verse 2.34? I mean, seriously.

Luckily everyone else is learning them quite handily. If all of her students were like me, she’d probably give up in despair.

***

I’ve made a matrix of our vacation trip for The Cop to review. Maps, drive times, hotels, destinations. Not a long trip, compared to what I had originally envisioned. We can see how this works before we try something more aggressive, in terms of miles covered. This trip will allow for a visit as we pass through My Gift’s neighborhood, a look at southern Utah, visits to Zion and Snow Canyon, and hotels that welcome the dog.

Started my morning with the right brain (Infinite Jest) and then did some work with the left (vacation matrix). Tomorrow I have to bring the left brain to work for a meeting that cannot be missed, and then it’s vacation until next Tuesday. Right brain, baby! Right brain for a full week!

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4 Responses

  1. Hi Karen
    Did you check out Alfia’s picture of her UD?
    She seems to talk a lot about problems with
    abs and hip flexors.

    Cheers,
    Arturo

  2. Wow, I didn’t previously know there’s an acronym for the muscle soreness I used to get two days after some tough exertion. ‘DOMS’ sounds so… kinky.

    The Yoga Sutras have been challenging for me to learn because they’re not very chanty. They seem amenable only to monotonic droning, which is boring. Maybe we need a Fischer-Price Sanskrit Chant-a-long toy, where we push a button, then pull a string and we get whatever sutra we’re trying to learn.

  3. Karen – I think that it is possible that the soreness you feel is from stretching, as opposed to from contracting/activating the muscles of your abdomen. Just a thought. lauren

  4. I haven’t memorized a new Shanti Mantra verse in two weeks!!

    Will work on that this week. Damnit.

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