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Cooler Cleanse: Day One

June 28, 2010

Beloved, inspirational Sharon Gannon... in a tree.

“Kayendrh siddhir asuddhi ksayat tapasah.  By austerity, impurities of body and senses are destroyed and occult powers gained.”                                                                                                                                                                                                 -Yoga Sutra II:43, translated by Sri Swami Satchidananda

Tapas means heat, fire, austerity, sweat, a burning desire, and it is essential to advancing your yoga practice.  How do you stay focused on your path, create a daily practice, develop and maintain steadiness of mind, by first wanting it really badly!  This desire fuels you to come back to your intention and to go further inside yourself.  The asana practice is designed to warm the body and create heat.  In the physical release of your sweat you are burning away what you don’t need in the fire of your tapas, and moving past it.  In this way tapas is both the fuel and the fire of your practice, and it is what keeps you moving further and deeper along the path.

As I took Rima’s incredible, magical class, filled with rows of mats with only a few inches between each other, all I could think of was the tapas in the room burning away all of our impurities.  Everyone was working hard, earnestly seeking whatever their intention in practicing is.  I am thinking of impurities, detox, purification, practice, and desire because it is day one of my Cooler Cleanse.  As I write this, I am enjoying my 5th juice today, Essential Red, made of freshly pressed carrot, beet, fuji apple and lemon… it’s absolutely delicious!

I feel very good so far about this cleanse.  I can already feel lightness developing in my body (probably thanks to {almost} following the pre-cleanse guidelines) and I am loving all the juices.  Without having to spend time and energy thinking about and preparing (or ordering) food, I am freed up.  Without having to process and digest heavy food, my body is energized.  I have sequenced the following 5 days, thought about, ruminated over the possibilities, so I feel open and ready for the obstacles that are sure to rise as part of the cleansing process.  Cleansing is a practice of austerity and dedication willingly undertaken as means of seeing what your made of and burning away what no longer serves you.  Wish me good luck!

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