LOVE IN PARIS

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Paris is the city where I breath every day with my heart. It’s easy, because there’s love, smiles and sweet words everywhere.

 

In my home street, and literally IN the street, there lives a poor guy (un SDF) who’s often hungry and drunk. 

 

Every time I pass, he kind of wakes up, his eyes smile and he says: Bonjour, ma princesse! 

 

The other day he asked me in an elegant, Molierish manner:

 

* Your name is not Valentine, is it? (Vous ne vous appelez pas Valentine?)

* No. (Non.)

* That’s what I thought. A princess got to have a princess name. (C’est ce que je me disais. Une princesse doit avoir un nom de princesse.)

 

 

 

 

 

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C’EST PARCE QUE TU AIMES TROP CHOPIN!

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Great teachers say great things at the right moment.

 

I’ve taken some piano classes  in Paris from a new teacher. My teacher asked me who’s music I wanted to play and my choice was Chopin, because I simply love Chopin.

 

In my second class my teacher told me to go on playing ignoring the faults. On any false note, just keep going. I’ve practiced this in many other fields, especially dance and it’s been possible. Not easy, but possible. For some reason in my piano lesson, every time I played wrong, I stopped and I tried to undo the fault. I was told not to stop, but I couldn’t help it. 

 

Then my teacher said it: Ah, c’est parce que tu aimes trop Chopin! (It’s because you love Chopin too much).

 

It’s true. I realized that if I had played another score, not loving it so much, I would have been able to go on. My emotion took over my concentration.

 

People who perform arts must be good at this. When things don’t go as planned, they improvise, they follow a bigger picture, they go with the flow. The thing is that you can’t allow ANY NEGATIVITY to take place. In dance, you follow the music and go with it no matter how your body executes the steps. You just dance. Your intention is with the music. Your heart is one with it.

 

It’s the same thing in life in general. When you stumble, get up. Go on dancing with life! See the bigger picture. 

 

Pour mes élèves Parisiens, IV

DISCIPLINE

Normalement, nous ne pratiquons pas le yoga juste pour un passe-temps. Nous la pratiquons pour améliorer la qualité de vie et pour découvrir ce que nous sommes derrière tous les rôles possibles de parent, d’enfant, de professionel. Qu’est-ce qui nous reste au moment où nous n’avons plus recours à quoi que ce soit: le statut, l’action, la pensée, les autres. Les qualités qu’une pratique peux donner pour la vie sont nombreuses. Pour les acquérir, il faut savoir travailler intelligemment.

Qu’est-ce que un travail intelligent dans le yoga? Personellement et en tant que pratiquante d’Ashtanga, je souligne l’importance de la discipline qui se manifeste par exemple dans le principe de silence (ne pas formuler des pensées et des mots ni entrer en interaction avec qui que ce soit). De ce silence naît la concentration nécessaire pour découvrir les choses nous échappant à un état d’esprit de tous les jours.

En ce qui concerne la pratique des asanas, on la fait sans accessoires et support matériel (props). Les supports, c’est fait pour nous aider. Aider en quoi? À mon avis, aider à échapper justement les problèmes. Aider à ne pas sentir. Les supports vont empêcher aussi le corps de trouver intérieurement les solutions. Le corps va trouver, mais il faut avoir de la patience! Ce n’est pas tout de suite! Je tiens beaucoup à ce que les élèves comprennent la magie et l’unicité de l’Ashtanga Yoga, c’est là le coeur de cette tradition: s’adapter à la pratique et non vice versa! Je vois partout des gens essayant d’adapter la pratique à leurs besoin et leur confort. Ça marche! Mais pas comme Guruji enseignait cette pratique: la pratique va nous transformer seulement si on la transforme pas! J’ai pu voir ça de mes propres yeux, les deux extrémités. Ceux qui travaillent assidûment sans changer la pratique, ils sont transformés. Et ceux qui jour après jour change la pratique selon leur propre goût, ils ne seront pas transformés. Ils auront des “résultats” immédiats comme ils veulent et les autres, les assidûs, des résultats plutôt naturels positifs, permanants que la vie leur donne.

Pour mes élèves Parisiens, II

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SPIRITUALITÉ

En yoga, on est à la recherche de quelque chose que nous ne connaissons pas, mais qui réside en nous. Dans cette recherche, on va au-delà de la pensée, des idées, des émotions et des sens – quoi que toutes ces autres couches de notre être nous intéressent aussi à un moment donné. Cette découverte n’est pas, par conséquant, intellectuelle. Elle est spirituelle. La spiritualité ne pourra jamais être concevable à l’intellect. On peut la distinguer aussi sur d’autres niveaux de notre être sans vraiment pouvoir la capter. Elle se manifeste dans le mental sans l’être, elle se manifeste dans corps sans être le corps. Elle se manifeste dans les actes sans être les actes. Il ne s’agit pas de quelque chose de mystérieux en soi, mais en même temps, le mystère de la vie humaine, c’est là qu’on le touche!

Comment entrer en contact avec cette couche invisible, intouchable, inconnu? Le premier pas, c’est, – à moins d’avoir cette connection comme qualité innée – , de la reconnaître et de s’ouvrir à l’inconnu. De là, on peut arriver à une nouvelle expérience qui nous parle. Cette expérience peut résulter d’une libération inattendue dans la respiration ou l’énergie, ou bien d’une relaxation d’une profondeur inouïe, bref, par la pratique consciente et régulière du yoga. Le secret gît dans la respiration. Elle peut s’appeler aussi ‘grâce’, car ceux qui ont eu un cadeau pareil, veulent l’appeler d’un nom digne de cette expérience: cadeau du ciel. Il nous est donné comme une deuxième vie à côté de la vie quotidienne et cette deuxième vie, cette couche, va donner un souffle à la vie courante. On se sent bien, mieux, tout commence à avoir du sens sans qu’il y ait rien d’autre de changé. La connection spirituelle avec la source spirituelle de la vie se fortifie. Elle restera toujours invisible, mais plus on y est connecté, plus on a la foi naturelle et plus on est épanoui.

Soul in the movement

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Today, my beloved ballet teacher, Frédéric Lazzarelli, told us: “Le mouvement n’est pas la danse.” It’s so true. Even many dance lovers and dancers just make movements. Movements without soul. When you get your soul into your work, that’s called art. Dance as an art means making a movement meaningful and beautiful, filled with YOU!
It’s totally the same thing in the yoga practice : A movement is not yoga. A posture is not yoga. It’s your soul you put into what you’re doing. The body is the instrument you work with to make it gradually a reflection of your soul.
From outside, these two great traditions – the classical ballet and the ashtanga yoga- can seem like the monotone repetition of the same thing. Actually, it’s a frame in which you cultivate your energy, your movements and you learn to incorporate your spirit in your body.
Happy Sunday everybody!

SMILE!

BODYCRYING

Have you ever bodycried? 😀 I don’t know when I learned this art, but nowadays I use it whenever I need. I will share with you this extraordinary way of feeling your life in your body!

I need to mention that as the starting point in my teaching of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga I make people explore this: to feel their breath in their body. To feel the rhythm and the movement of the energy created by the breath. Naturally, if the energy is stuck, it’s not moving in the body. The body feels stuck too then. By breathing with consciousness, you become able to cross these limits and thus able to open the body from inside, i.e. to free the energy.

I’m teaching this way, because it’s like this I was experiencing my practice from the very beginning. When I could grow the space inside, the emotions that were stuck, started to move and wanted to get out! :)) Sometimes I would cry..old things coming up. Sometimes I felt really angry, sometimes soooo happy and relieved.

About ten years ago I found Osho meditations and fell in love with The Dynamic Meditation and Kundalini Meditation (I just hated them in the beginning!). Both are active meditations in which you allow your body, emotions, energy move without control and you’ll discover new facets of yourself! You find your real self which means being really tangibly multidimensional.

I continued my practice and meditations and gradually I realized that even when I wasn’t doing anything, just relaxing, laying down, I could “listen” to these waves inside of me and give them a form or a meaning. I understood this language of the energy and could see which way it wanted to grow. Really.

Then it got subtler. Or should I say more physical? I don’t really know. I could feel an anger and when I relaxed to it..it would change to something else. The transformation of the energy took place without me taking part to it. Of course, there had been a lot of conscious work before and then it just went to the right direction: any negative feeling started to look for another vibration.

So, why am I writing about this today? Yesterday, I got a phone call during which I was verbally aggressed  by someone. I felt sad after the call..that’s all. Today, I got a message where I got aggressed again. I felt sadder. I felt contradictory in my body. There was something in me that wanted to go away from these negative energies..wanted to hide, to escape, to shrink. There was a bigger and softer wave that wanted to move.

I laid down to the floor with this big wave. No tears were coming out of my eyes, but all of my chakras, the whole body was having a kind of smooth cramps, not even visible from outside. And I let my body cry. It cried and cried. In the end, when the storm was over, the tears came out. Then came the SMILE.

Smile!

Morning freshness

This morning in Samasthiti Studio, Paris..I asked if there were any reflections about the practice. A student said there’s so many things, but they are not formulated in his head yet – as it was so early.I find this is the beauty of the morning practice: to be pure, not having formulated yet what’s going on inside. We are just fresh energy in the body and thus less mental. That could also be the moment to share something spontaneously – why not? We are usually controlling so much, that these kind of open-hearted sharings are rare, that we’d just start confidently to open up and express our inner world.

Well, as nobody else wanted to speak this morning, I felt I will let my heart speak. I started to tell how grateful I feel for David Swenson. He really is a yogi, an incarnation of yoga. I just can see his body to be so spiritual. It’s that he has energy flowing in his body freely, the wisdom become flesh and it’s not about putting his leg behind his head.

After the class, a lady told me, she’s from Austin, Texas..just as David. :))

I didn’t know why I started to talk about him..then I knew.