Prashant’s classes always leave me with indelible images. I jot them down at home, hours later. I know full well that recording any class is prohibited, so bear in mind that the following paraphrased statements are my interpretations.
- Don’t do asana strictly for the body. Think of a fountain pen. Now, if there’s a fountain pen made of gold or covered with diamonds, suddenly it is not a pen anymore; it’s something else. In asana, if you go beyond the body, it also becomes about something else.
- In a group, if there’s one person who works hard, sometimes the others will react by doing less. But sometimes, in the presence of hard-working person, the others follow and do more. This is the result of leadership. A good leader causes everyone to work better. In asana, the leader is the breath.
- There are many reasons why people take a cup of tea. In the morning the reason is clear but during the rest of the day, there are many reasons: waste time, be social, procrastinate, avoid doing what you should be doing. In asana, there are also many reasons how and why people do it. Don’t assume that the way it’s taught in class is the only way. Don’t think that any reason is a good reason.
- Yoga has become about teaching. Why is there certification for teachers, but no certification for students?
- Don’t judge your asana on how well you can do a pose, but on how well you understand a pose. If you can do a pose, but have no understanding, that’s not yoga.
- Each asana is a book. Ask: what is this book trying to teach?
- If you put milk in a churn and stir it, you will definitely get butter. The quality depends on the milk you put in. In yoga, simply by practicing, simply by doing, you will likewise be transformed. But the quality also depends on the raw material, on what you bring to it.
- Asana, if done only at the body level, is anti-yoga. You must first learn anti-yoga to learn yoga. Once you see that asana is anti-yoga, you can learn true yoga.
Class after class, I collect more gems. It’s almost too much. For me, one Prashant class is sufficient for a week’s contemplation (and we’re all enrolled in three or four Prashant classes per week). The fountain pen, the cup of tea, the book… might occupy me for months!
Please keep tracking these gems, Luci! As you say, the simplicity with which he communicates these lessons is extremely misleading.
Thanks! My practice was very different after reading this and thinking about it.