Parivrtta Anjaneyasana * Twisted Crescent Pose
To begin keep one foot forward with the knee at a 90 degree angle and step the other foot to the back of your mat, balancing on the ball of your foot. You can step the front foot a step or two to the side that it is on if you need better balance. Placing the hand that matches with the back foot on the mat, on the inside of your front foot. forefinger straight, rest of fingers spread out, raise the arm that matches the front foot up towards the sky and follow it with your gaze. Back leg strong and straight. Variations include putting the hand on the mat on the outside of the front foot, or bringing hands to a prayer and twisting so that the elbow of the back-foot arm is wedged on the outside of the front thigh.
Hanuman, the monkey god, was born as Anjaneya. His mother was Anjani, an aspara (a celestial being) who was cursed to live on Earth as a monkey. She returned to the heavens the moment that Anjaneya was born because the curse was to be lifted the moment she gave birth to an incarnation of Lord Shiva. He had been carried to her womb on the wind, and thus the wind god, Vayuu was his father. Vayuu doted on little Anjaneya in all his free time, yet he was quite busy moving air around the world and in the heavens and often had to leave for long bouts of time. When he would go, he would leave Anjaneya with a pile of mangos to snack on because his son loved the sweet, juicy fruits. One day, Anjaneya finished his pile of mangoes and began to swing in the trees, his next favorite pastime. As he swung from branch to branch, he saw a huge mango on one of the highest branches, gleaming down. He raced to get to it, only to find it moved further and further away, until it appeared to be floating in the air. “I must have that fruit,” he though with intention, and before he knew it, he had jumped off the tree with a leap and he was sailing through the air at the mango in the sky. It was so bright, he had never seen a mango like this before. With his mouth open wide and salivating, he flew towards, what he thought was a mango, but was of course the sun! The sun, Surya, saw the small monkey with the big mouth coming at him and began to get scared. He yelled for Indra, the king of the gods to help him and Indra came and flung his thunderbolt at Anjaneya, hitting him in the cheek and sending him down to earth, where he fell, unconscious. Vayuu, felt the pain of his son from far away and swiftly swept the land to come to his side. When he saw his son lying lifeless, he drew in a big breath and held it, pausing all the air, all the wind and all the breath in the world. Indra panicked. Without the breath of Vayuu, the world and all its beings would cease to be. He offered to bring Anjaneya back to life. Vayuu sobbed, “What’s the use?” “He will just die again someday and I won’t be able to bear it then either.” Indra thought fast. “I will bring him back immortal,” he said. He will have unparalleled prowess and magical capabilities, but he will not be aware of those powers until he is mature and using them from a place of devotion in service of something greater than himself and his desires. Vayuu breathed a deep sigh of relief and happiness and the air moved again. Everyone on Earth and in Heaven took a great deep breath too. Indra touched the young monkey on the broken cheek and said, “and from here forward, we will call you Hanuman.”
Perhaps this holiday weekend you felt a bit sad, or down, as the Moon was in her debilitated state in Scorpio. There are emotions are turbulent and our fears seem very real. On Monday, we had a direct dristhi, or gaze, from Mars, the ruler of Scorpio on that Moon, giving us both courage and anger as we face those emotions and fears. As we moved into Tuesday, the Moon moved into sidereal Sagittarius, crossing retrograde Jupiter as it went back over the gandanta point into Scorpio. This point is an abrupt and often unfriendly-feeling jump from water to fire, and in the case of backward motion, fire back to water. As the Moon, our mind and emotions moved into Mula, we might have felt the need to pull something up from the roots to begin fresh. As Jupiter moved back into Jyestha, we might have been questioning the uprooting of our teachings we have just done and feeling a little like a boat without water as we have to go back to the battlefield of our fears. It's a good time to re-listen to any teachings or teachers that may have been profound for you last month to remind yourself where you last felt forward motion. As we move into the rest of the week, the Moon will progress through Sagittarius to be in conjunction with Saturn and Ketu, only a degree apart at this point. This conjunction is already bringing us to a freezing point with something we really do not care to deal with at all, something we in fact thought was done, but at some point the cold, harsh reality will break to the surface. With our mind and emotions caught up it might feel like this week is the breaking point, but next week, as we hit May with a bang, The Moon will pass on, but Mars will move into a direct one-way drishti with Saturn and expect things to feel explosive. Mars is fire and Saturn is ice and when these two unfriendly planets make direct contact, expect icicles to fly as they get blasted open. With Ketu there, we can expect a most unpleasant experience as it is blasting right where we prefer it not to and in Sagittarius it WILL be related to those hard-core beliefs we hold. Socially and personally, next week will be one to wear a helmet for. Uggh. When Mars moves into Gemini, it will happen again, this time with a Retrograde Saturn (Saturn goes Retrograde on the 30th of April), so put that helmet somewhere easy to reach, and maybe spring for some knee pads as Saturn has a tendency to bring us to our knees. The are of your life affected will be the one that Sagittarius rules. If you haven't yet gotten my FREE report* on the Nodal Axis and You, I recommend getting it soon. It will help you discern where you will be getting hit in your life, so you can be prepared! * Sign up on the right top of this page
What does the aforementioned pose and the story of Anjaneya/Hanuman have to do with any of this? Well balancing poses can help us focus our fiery energy on a point. One-pointed focus is a good use of fire for meditation and function, rather than burning down the house with many-pointed fiery focus;-) Twisting poses help us balance our pitta (fire element) dosha. Offering some relief to the solar-plexus region. The story can help us in two ways. By reading it on the surface, you can see the moral of the story is to make sure what you are flying after with mouth wide open is juicy and sweet and not hot as sh$%t, also to have humility and devotion in the heart as you harness your amazing powers in this world (which we all have).
By reading this story and letting it sit inside you, you unconsciously enter the story and characters as they do you. The ancient myths and many faces of God are a portal of consciousness through which you may travel. The point then does not become understanding the story, rather allowing it to lead you and show you all the treasure points along the way. These are bread crumbs left behind by those who have walked the path before you.
Blessed be and Namaste.
*New Moon in sidereal Pisces on Friday, April 6th, 1:50 am PST
*Revati, the star of Wealth, Prosperity and the final walk home. Ruled by Pushan, the shepherd, the nourisher
*Nodal Axis shift: Rahu in Gemini and Ketu in Sagittarius, for the next year and a half! Saturn joined in Sag until Jan 2020
*Mercury direct and soon-to-be debilitated in Pisces again
*Jupiter goes Retrograde April 10th until August 11th
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