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YTT December 18th

Preface and Intro to the Upanishads
Ch. 15 of Feurstein

Moving into non-dualist and vedantic thought.

Triad of raja, hatha and jana yoga.
Raja is basis for hatha yoga.

Raja yoga is about illumination the mind. Focusing, carefulness in our focusing out of the mind. Words do cut, and heal… Sticks and stone adage is false. Making use of rather than being made use of by language.

Desire for space.

BBC century of the self… Check YouTube.
Psychoanalytic review of marketing.

Protect me from what I want.

How good are you at walking your own edge?
There is anxiety in staring into that abyss. The possibility of something new. It is a warning and a possibility. 
There is faith, in the most profound sense of the word, that self-realization if there. Faith is a knowing. In our society belief and faith colude with each other and we get them all tangled up. Belief is more accessible, but faith is an experience of being.

Space of emptiness opens a space. Taking that space is a leap of faith.
Faith is a singular path. You follow it alone.
Kierkegaard text deals with this topic.

The real provides everything that’s needed, given the right space.

When we practice, we have these three focal points. They are practice in regulating our distance between ourselves and the object, one point of awareness.

Open up the possibility when we reorient to the ego-ideal (that tyrant in your head). Taking up that is our choice. With practice, we learn to develop the capacity to 

Opens up our space and give us the opportunity to be in it.
What appears to be utterly narcissistic, it precisely not. You have to have a self to loose it. (saffron debate article)

Being had by or having desire.
Learn to hold the empty space as empty.
What starts as tolerance takes on a sweetness in time.
The ebb and flow doesn’t end. It always moves and grows. 

The difference between cling and holding lightly.
Clinging arrests the creative process and we repeat repeat repeat. Repetition/compultiom
To continue on the path, is the path to the beyond.
If you engage with the now, you have everything you need to engage the real.


YTT December 4th

YTT Epstein text….

How do mindfully take up the desire space?

Anxiety is an edge.

Moving towards the Singular
Repattern this body… Drain all that extra junk that we have of it’s meaning. Then they are just structural components. And we have the option of configuring our body as we choose rather than to the others desire.

I’m having desire not desire having me.
It’s what we set the stage for with the three movements.

Hysteric spends their life making themselves into the object the other wants.

YTT November 10th

What is mulla bhunda? It’s nothing until you form it.

Why do you step onto the mat?
What do you want? And it’s always different…

realizing that there may be no answer. The unanswerable are the ones that can take you beyond…


It’s hard for me to say what my current relationship to desire is: sometimes I think I’ve just woken up from the cycle of demand and I’m trying to escape it and other times I think it’s just difficult to view yourself clearly in the present.

I took the Intro to Ashtanga class a year ago.

I came to yoga with friends, Josh and Carl.

I remember saying to them shortly after I started: there has to be some kind of return on this investment. It’s not helping my body, I’m still a fall down stressful mess and I am barely able to walk. I’m sore from the time I leave class to the next week when I return. At the time, I had neglected my friends and family for my job and Carl and I hadn’t spoken in 6 months. I choose to attend yoga with Josh in an attempt to mend our relationship more than some interest in yoga. And maybe the scheduled class would force me to leave my dew once a week.

I guess coming to class every week eventually made the space I needed to see clearly through my work fog. I picked up more and more classes and they became my lifeline when work became worse. When my brother moved to Guatemala on a whim to learn Spanish, I was completely dumbfounded and in awe of his decision. It was so contrary to the set path I’d always followed. So I went to Guatemala. And then to Honduras.

I was sitting on the beach in Honduras talking to our guide, Starla. The rest of our group was frenetically combing the island for overpriced souvenirs, but Starla and I ditched the group and walked the length of the island in our bear feet and found a secluded beach. After traversing Honduras via raft, foot and zip line for 10 days, I finally voiced what had been tumbling through my head for months: “I chased what I thought I was supposed to, and then all of a sudden I realized it would never be what I wanted. I guess now i have to decide what it is i want.” 

I fear that yoga will just become my latest obsession. I’m afraid I’ve just substituted one more activity that I can perfect to a fault. I don’t know what I’m doing about my job; I don’t know what I want to do about it.

So there we go, I’ve spent most of my life furiously working towards one benchmark or another, and now I’m trying to figure out how to redefine my relationship to drive, to desire. 

YTT November 3rd

The self is constructed moment to moment. Aggregates.
If we were the same from moment to moment, we’d be robots, static, unchanging.
Our emptiness is the space for change.

We have some relationship to the signifiers, the primal mark of me (I) to language, but do we cling to it or do we hold it lightly. Do we hold desire lightly?

There is something you have to work THROUGH to get from pt A to pt B.
Fear… Biological drive towards self-preservation vs. Existential fear of death of non-being. This fear of death is uniquely human. Is this our relationship to loss and desire?

Life without language… Can’t picture it, can’t imagine it.
Death drive is a longing for before the language.
Yoga and meditation are the reach for the beyond the language. Loosening your grip, you can’t discipline it, you can let it be.
We are after a different relationship to language, to the constant babble in the head. It’s how practice works in the body… Restructuring itself.

Organism vs. Body

We live in a flexible universe.
We can allow movement in the body/mind.
We can all choose our relationship desire.

Your self structure is a work of art.
The dialectic of desire gets increasingly complex and refined as it moves from demand to love.

How are you living out your relationship to desire… Journal.
How does the practice land us in the empty space?
Everyone is gonna force me to write my god damn goals.

What the Buddha taught… Book with basic story of his life, might be good to pick up for background

YTT October 30th

Front and back body
Spins and counter-spins
Agonistic and antagonistic muscle action

Every movement is a tension… And balancing these tensions.

1st movement is foundational!
2nd movement is a pull to the axis and therefor on the axis.
3rd movement is extension originating from a point on the axis that you created.

Questions about the periphery always trace back to the axis!

Prana and apana: two energies that travel up and down the body

Conze’s translation of the heart sutra

Heart sutra as a second movement… Creates the axis for the dialectic.

Arhad (practitioner in hinayana school) is out for their own enlightenment and bodhisattva is holding out for the rest to achieve enlightenment and the perchecka Buddha that doesn’t need any of the teaching to reach enlightenment

The Heart Sutra just reminds us not to get caught up in the abhidharma.

We’re trying to move beyond thought by going through thought, beyond deside by working through desire.

Lack of something is what creates the space for desire, for creativity. There is no penultimate object. It’s acceptance is when we can work through it and not struggle against it. The object will always disappoint. And really you don’t want it to be filled or there will be no space for desire, for creativity.

Drive: never enough or always too much (clinging)
Desire: refinement of drive
These are the shaping of the axis, the second movement

This is the third movement. Bridging the gap of desire. 
We work through the ‘I am’ to move beyond the ‘I’

Surrender and allow the cycle of desire.

Beyond need, demand
Beyond demand, desire
Beyond desire, love
Beyond love…

We can think about it in terms of the three movements. The dance starts with desire. Where mindfulness begins and we start to see clearly.

Jump into your panic attack.

Making the shift from being oriented to the demand of the other and recognizing a certain autonomy opens the door to the desire. Making and structuring spaces.

Absolute singularity yields absolute subjectivity.


We tend to construct the same realities moment to moment,  but we don’t have to. We can change.

Hey Crazies!

Beginners series.

A year ago I took the six week beginners ashtanga vinyasa series at ay. Now I’m taking it with a new perspective-looking at it from the role of the teacher. It’s been a really long journey and it feels like so little time has passed. I wonder where I’ll be a year from now…

YTT October 6th

Metanymic vs. Metaphoric

Constructed nature of the self

We get it in the body, we experience it as whole because we have an image of it as whole. We learn to tolerate the bodies fragmentation.
THS is saying there is no coherent self. It is an interdependent piece arising from moment to moment. It is scary, but freeing. It creates the space for transformational change.

What might be conceived as a whole is a part of another and another and another.

Subjectivety alters things irrevicobaly. We are each brought into subjectivity by way of language. We can be subjects of the other demand. Being subjected to. As we learn to dance with language, we start to question what it is we want. What am I. We subjectify or deeply internalize the demand of the other. We make them something that is ours. Skandasa in the Buddhist perspective.

In terms of the three movements. A child is spoken about, talked about before it somas into existence. A child pulls in those pieces, expectation, demands. And then extends back into the world.

We all have to take up the space of desire. And if we want, a beyond desire. Love. God. Being beyond desire still includes desire.

So we a society of nephritic subjects. We have reached the limit of our demand for the other. To take it all in means surrendereing to demands of the other, forfeiting your space of desire.

Suffering… Pervasive unsatisfactoriness

4 noble truths
1. Life is suffering
So what is the point? You are going to experience suffering. You will be too full. You will be too hungry.

Happiness in our society is a tyrant.

It’s only in loss, that you can find a self.
Its only once you have a self that you can transcend it.

Form is emptiness. Emptiness is form.
This is the space of desire we are talking about.

So we are using signifiers for talk about this experience, a signified. We are trying to talk about it and then get on with it.

Speaking is to call something into form and silence is allowing form to recede into emptiness.

YTT October 1st

Reader 18 and 7
Write out exactly what you feel, think and do for first three postures. Then distill it to the discourse you need to teach it.

Khundalini and ecstasy… Kinda of a sham, not what they’re talking about. When we talk about bliss in the west we think about getting forget about being in the world that id really hare to be in. The pre-speech place. But it’s a movement beyond the “I”. It’s an amazing experience, but you don’t know you had it until you return to your everyday again. It’s a constant work to then contain it, the low buzz, in your everyday life.

Its hard to be a person in this world. You have to constantly sculpt your relationship with the world.

Lol. Whole bit sounds pretty close to drug speak.

Going through the body in order to move beyond the body. Strip tantric yoga of it’s charge and it’s about separation. Take it in, allow it and not make it more an it is. Yoking, containing.

What is it to be mortal?

It’s a dance…

If you pick a way in, the part contains the whole.
You will get there, the other pieces will open up.

You have to have a self, before you can loose a self.
Magic… Power.
Didn’t we see Hitler abuse it… playing the corporate game. Selling desire.

Epstein said, sometimes you have to have the courage to get off the mat and get on the couch.

It’s a razors edge. So the beautiful thing about tantric with the body, through the body. Work with what you’ve got. Developed for the darkest of the dark. Can’t put the body, the ego in the “bad” box. You’ll spin your wheels.