Following along the themes of the Yamas as the first limb in the 8 limb principles of yoga, the second of the Yamas is a simple one but not always easy. Some of my favourite asana postures are like this too. They challenge the mind and the body to work together.
We’ll be exploring the idea of Satya, or truth, as it pertains to the way we express ourselves both outwardly and inwardly.
Pose: Crescent Lunge
Mudra: Kali Mudra
Mantra: Sat nam (“My name is truth”)
From standing, step the right foot toward back of mat. Allow the left knee to bend toward the big toe. Ensure the pelvis is stable.
Come into Kali mudra, named after the fierce goddess Durga, bringing hands together with all fingers save index fingers interlaced - index fingers represent the sword of Durga, who slays illusions.
Both Kali and Durga are manifestations of the goddess Mahadevi
Durga represents the empowerment that enables us to stand in our truth
Inhale to lift the hands overhead
Exhale to lower them to heart level while visualizing the sword cutting through whatever causes you to be inauthentic (words, clothing, actions, habits)
Chant mantra Sat nam (“My name is truth”)
This time of year (if you’re living in the North-western hemisphere) we notice the days getting colder and darker and we learn into our comforts. It is a time of year where we can allow unhealthy habits to develop that deplete us or we can stoke the fire from within using fierce discipline and face our truths, no matter how uncomfortable or ugly they may be.
Whether we relate to the idea of mythology or not, the energy of Durga (often depicted in a menacing image holding many weapons while riding a tiger) represents our inner battles with duties/responsibilities, seeking happiness, values, forgiveness over mistakes - both personal and those of others, as well as other circumstantial challenges we face in life. Each weapon she yields represents each category of the struggle.