Pose Of The Month
Unraveling the Myth of the Pose:
Malasana - Garland Pose
Over a decade ago, while I was working on a cruise ship we sailed across the Pacific and landed near Isle de Pines, New Caledonia. A magical place, where every other island in the south pacific has brush, bamboo and low-lying foliage, this island has evergreen pine trees, mirroring the strength and resilience of the people who inhabit it. We were the first ship to ever drop anchor near this untouched paradise. And I am still moved to tears when I think of our reception. All dressed in their finest, the men sailed out to meet us in their collective boats. The women danced and sang on the shore, beckoning us to join in the celebration. It was an event of regalia, ceremony and heartfelt expression
As we disembarked, we each received a hand-braided garland which we all wore around our neck as a token of peace, inclusivity and celebration.
A year later, I received my first string of Mala beads upon completing my first teacher training back at the National Yoga Institute in Santa Monica, CA. It felt like a right of passage to receive and wear this gift from my teachers, as if they were handing down generations of teaching with one necklace. Each time I wear them, I am reminded of my lineage, my progress, and the purpose with which I have set forth down this path.
This month’s pose carries with it the strength and reverence with which we can wear on our bodies. Mala is a garland, something that is usually passed along as a gift or offering, something that contains purpose and ceremony.
This pose can also be translated to Yogi’s “squat”...a word which my grandmother would call “interesting” and hardly ever use at the dinner table.
Regardless, this is a posture, just like all other asanas, that we can approach time and time again and still learn something. Because though it may appear simple, it is definitely a practice to sit in an offering of peace, celebration and ultimately, community.
Enjoy the complete pose in the downloadable breakdown below of getting into Malasana - Garland Pose
Still have more work to do? Want to deepen your practice?
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