They're creepy and they're kooky, mysterious and spooky, they're altogether ooky — not the Addams family, but a few choice chilling yoga poses and practices. This isn't yoga's doing. We are particularly practiced at getting ourselves worked up when we meet with shadows, dark corners, creepety sounds, and goosebumpy, hair-raising films. Somewhere beneath the surface, we know it's all in our trickery-treaty minds. The mind is mighty powerful, beyond that of witches' brews and love potions.
Make certain you peer over your shoulder before you read on. Just in case.
- Kurmasana (Tortoise Pose) Not unlike a mummy, this pose sets off feelings of suffocation and triggers trappedness. The last time I took Kurmasana, I got stuck and am pretty certain my brain exploded. Something to work on. Have a Turtle Untangler nearby and breathe through it. Slow and steady wins the race.
- Neti Pot This is an Ayurvedic practice often employed by yogis and yoginis to ease allergies and cleanse the nasal passages of primordial ooze. Many people cringe at the thought of pouring water into their noses ("But I'll drown!"). Imagine you are a crusty old pirate (fierce, feisty, and desperately needing a neti session). Yaaarrr! A little saline drizzle is nothing you can't sail through. Relax and float off into the horizon.
- Chanting Putting your voice out there, even if it will commingle with many others, can be as scary as the shrill cries of goblins or a well-timed ghostly "BOO!" Know this: your voice has the power to turn darkness into light, regardless of its tonality. Come in to the light.
- Inversions Handstand, Headstand, and the rest of the crew often strike fear into the hearts of many a yoga practitioner. Fear of falling, fear of getting hurt, fear of looking strange. You have a friend in the wall. Not like someone's IN the wall (goblins and such), but the actual wall. Begin there. The goblins, the wall, and I all believe in you. You can do it.
- Meditation This may very well be the spookiest of all. Sitting alone. In the dark. In complete and utter silence. With. Your. THOUGHTS. Aaaaaccccckkkkkk!!!! They just keep coming, like the vampire or boogeyman who won't die! I won't lie, this one takes an inordinate amount of time and practice. I run into a lot of cobwebs and get tangled up regularly. But those few moments of peace, which will eventually grow into periods of peace, are worth it. So when the mind tells you to turn back, that it's just too terrifying in there — forge ahead, flashlight of calm in hand.
Sending you only the best scares — the kind that move you forward on your path,