yoga pirate…

{October 18, 2009}   ahimsa and rosemary fries…
(now, let’s be clear– i’m not a sanskrit expert nor do i play one on tv –but let’s talk)
the upanishads that are dated around 7-8 centuries before the time of jesus (bce)… the concept of ahimsa or   non-violence is presented.  it became part of buddhism, hinduism and jainism; each one has  developed their own take on what non-violence means…
pantanjali  offered ahimsa as the first yama, or restraint.  this, the first limb of the yoga path, reads: Upon being established in non-hurtfulness, there is a relinquishing of hostility in the presence of that.-Patanjali Yoga Sutras ii:35

and from what i can tell, this yama has many layers.  the first, most obvious perspective is the non-harming of others…any major religion has its own rules requiring a person to not hurt another by coveting, stealing or murdering.  the Quran has it, the Bible has it and  the golden rule implies this doctrine.  even my getting pissy with the cashier at whole foods the other day is not only harming my interaction with him, it harms me. (sigh)

i am practicing non-violence toward myself.  how many times during my day do i chastise myself by negative self-talk? when i become aware of these samkaras or fabrications,  now i attempt to treat me like i would treat  friends…would i say “man, you are so stupid for forgetting your lunch at home” to a co-worker?  no.
what about  non-violence in asana practice…do i push a bit too far in janu sirsasana so that pain is the main sensation, berate myself for not being able to make it to a complete, picture-perfect pose and risk injury? i’ve done it and i venture to guess you may have too…it comes back to awareness.  i would not judge my yoga class mate for not doing a pose perfectly so why treat myself to such harmful thoughts.
then there is the never-ending discussion in the yoga community: vegetarian vs. omnivore.  i have been everything from macrobiotic, raw foods, vegan, and carnivore…my diet could always be better (she says, wiping away the  potato chip crumbs from her chin)…some diets have made me feel better than others.  i don’t have a big, loaded proclamation  to add to this discussion but can ask this: does what you’re eating right now harm your body?  how about the earth?  can you choose to eat humanely raised meat?  how does your diet uplift you?  let me know because i’m always learning…
rosemary fries

rosemary fries

cut into large slices two large yellow potatoes and two large yams.  place in bowl with 1/4 c. water, 3 tbsp. olive oil, salt, pepper, and 1 tbsp. rosemary.  stir until coated.  place in oven set at 425 on a cookie sheet (i use tin foil underneath) for 30-40 minutes or until completely cooked and somewhat crispy.



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