Archive for June, 2010

Celebrate Summer Solstice with Sun Salutations

June 16, 2010

SUMMER SOLSTICE

Today is the first day of summer, Summer Solstice.

Solstice comes from two Latin words:
sol = sun, and sistere = to stand still.

Summer Solstice or Midsummer has the longest hours of daylight in a year, and has been celebrated in many cultures throughout time.

Summer Blessing

As the sun spirals its longest dance,
Cleanse us!
As nature shows bounty and fertility
Bless us!
Let all things live with loving intent
And to fulfill their truest destiny.

Summer Solstice Ritual

Summer Solstice is a time to gather courage and strength. It is a time to renew energy and purify your body mind and spirit.  Place herbs of sage, rosemary, thyme, basil, and lavender in a cotton cloth or pouch.  Tie the bundle with a red string or piece of yarn.  Hold your cloth in both hands, mentally, pour all of your pain, troubles, sorrows and illness and anything else you want to remove from your life into the bundle.   Bury the pouch along with all the negative energy in your life deep into the ground.

Sun Salutations to celebrate the Sun

In yoga we honor the Sun with Surya Namaskara (Sun Salutations).  The ancient yogis taught that each of us replicates the world at large, embodying “rivers, seas, mountains, fields, stars and planets…the sun and moon” (Shiva Sam­hita, II.1-3). The sun, corresponds to our spiritual, heart.

Traditionally, Sun Salutation is best performed outdoors, facing east-the location of the rising sun, a symbol of the dawn of consciousness.

There are many versions of Surya Namaskar, below are two of my favorites.

Feeling ambitious? Try for 108 Sun Salutations.  108 is a scared number in many Eastern Traditions including Yoga.  (there are 108 beads on a Mala)

Sun Salutation A

Posture: Surya-namaskar A
Pronunciation: soor-yee-ah-nahma-skar

Mountain Pose (Tadasana)

Inhale, arms up

Exhale, fold forward

Inhale, look up-flat back

Ex, Plank; Slowly lower down (Chaturanga Dandasana)

In, Up Dog (Upward Facing Dog)

Ex, Down Dog: 5 Breaths (Downward Facing Dog)

In, Feet to hands; Look up-flat back.

Ex, fold forward

In, Reverse Swan dive up to standing

Sun Salutation B

Posture: Surya-namaskar B
Pronunciation: soor-yee-ah-nahma-skar

Mountain Pose. Tadasana

IN- Chair Pose – Utkatasana

EX Forward Bend – Uttanasana

IN- Look Up, Flat Back

EX-Plank. Four Limbed Staff Pose – Chaturanga Dandasana

IN- Upward Facing Dog – Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

EX-. Downward Facing Dog – Adho Mukha Svanasana

IN- Right Foot Forward Warrior I – Virabhadrasana I

EX- Plank Four Limbed Staff Pose – Chaturanga Dandasana

IN- Upward Facing Dog – Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

EX- Downward Facing Dog – Adho Mukha Svanasana5 breaths

IN- Left Foot Forward Warrior I – Virabhadrasana I

EX- Plank Four Limbed Staff Pose – Chaturanga Dandasana

IN- Upward Facing Dog – Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

EX-Downward Facing Dog – Adho Mukha Svanasana

Step, feet to hands, Standing Forward Bend – Uttanasana

IN-Awkward Chair Pose – Utkatasana

EX-Samasthiti (Tadasana)

Repeat beginning with left foot forward in Warrior I

More Calendar Theme Yoga Poses

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