Balancing Power & Wisdom
Understanding Pranayama & Asana Breathwork
Pranayama and asana practice are intertwined. The entry to asana practice is Tadasana, or mountain pose. It’s not just an entry to standing poses, it’s an entry to sitting poses and even Savasana.
If you can bring mountain pose to your pranayama breathwork, then you’re moving on up.
When you stand on a mountain, at her base, on her slope or her summit, you can feel the completeness of the human experience. Views can take in vast expanses, 360 degrees at the summit.
All the elements have sculpted the landscape – earth, water, air, fire. The mountains may have been pushed up by the tectonic plates or a volcanic eruption. Wind and water and sun have shaped how they stand and carry on.
We want to bring this full consciousness to our practice of pranayama and asana.
This is known as Jnana Marga – the path of consciousness.
The consciousness graces the physical body, the mental body, and the physiological body.
– BKS Iyengar, 75th Birthday Teachings
BKS Iyengar would say that “there is power and there is intelligence.” The prana is the energetic power, the prajna is the intelligence or wisdom. In everything we do we want to balance the power and the wisdom.