Last night, the darkest night of the year, also of the last 360 some years (because of a lunar eclipse!), I hosted a 108 Sun Salutations event. What is it about this name that keeps people away? Okay, well, I think I understand. If you have never done 108 Sun salutations, you have nothing to compare it to, and you have no expectation of what you can get out of it.
In the beginning, there is comararaderie - you are there with friends who also love the yoga practice. Then you begin to move with the breath, it may seem odd at first, everyone doing that and no one talking. Then you begin to go deeper into concentration - on breath, body, moving efficiently. You may notice others around you, yet it almost seems like once more, you are alone.
Last night only one other person showed up to do this with me. Kim has been a student of mine for several years, she wants to teach yoga, she loves yoga, she has a great career and family and she doesn't live in Minnesota right now - she lives in California. So Kim - who now lives in California - is the only student who showed up to participate in the 108 during a Minnesota snow storm. How appropriate!
Back to the experience...we were moving together, completely breathing as one and counting together. About number 35 or 38, I realized I was starting to warm up and sweat, and the poses felt really great. I began to feel all the connections once again re-connected (I don't feel that daily since my biking accident). We kept going, we never stopped. At one point I got a side ache, and it is likely from that cup of coffee and christmas cookie I had an hour before we started.... Around number 90, I realized we were going to keep going with out stopping - I think the first time that has happened for me. It was easy! I had to move a little more mindfully and slowly from 90 to 108 because my right elbow was hurting a bit - my right side is weaker since my accident (concussion on left side of brain). All in all - it felt really great to loosen up my body that much and to sweat - a rare thing these days with near zero temperatures outside!
Thank you Kim ! Next 108 will be on March 21, 2011 at Yoga Prairie, my wish/dream is that the studio will be packed for this event! (6:30 p.m. on a Monday night!)