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Lesson 127 -
Siddhasana or Padmasana? (Audio)
- Creative Postures for Comfort During Spinal Breathing (Audio)
Date: Tue Feb 24, 2004 0:49pm
New Visitors: It is recommended you read from the beginning of the archive, as previous
lessons are prerequisite to this one. The first lesson is, "Why
Q: I had been doing
meditation in Padmasana (Lotus Pose) for a long time. After reading your
message I realised that it doesn't bring any pressure to perineum. Do I need
to switch to Sidhasana? I tried it but looks like it would take quite some
time for me to get accustomed to it. Let me know how should I proceed. In
Padmasana, one limitation which I find is after sitting for 45 minutes or
so, my legs become slightly numb and it distracts me a little bit.
A: Padmasana is a very
good seat with its own benefits, though not many can sit in it comfortably
for long. Siddhasana in the simplified form given in the lessons is an
easier seat to stay in, once achieved. Its effects can also be achieved
using a prosthetic at the perineum. See lessons
#75 for details.
Which is best? It
depends on your preference and approach to achieving your goals in yoga. If
you are not inclined to directly stimulate sexual energy to raise kundalini,
then siddhasana is not something to rush into. On the other hand, if you are
inclined bring up sexual energy by direct means, then siddhasana is very
desirable, more desirable than padmasana.
It is a matter of where
we fall on the "tantra scale" at a point in time. Siddhasana is left of
center on this scale, while padmasana is right of center. Left is working
more with sensuality in practices, and right is working less with
sensuality. As you know, we go far left in the tantra group. Siddhasana is
in that direction. How inclined we are to go into siddhasana is a function
of our bhakti, which is related to how much purification we have in our
nervous system. It is interesting that more purification encourages us to be
more involved in directly cultivating sexual energy upward in spiritual
In yoga it is not possible to avoid dealing with
sexual energy indefinitely, because sooner or later the nervous system
becomes activated by the rise of kundalini, and inner ecstasy explodes
inside. There is nothing more sensual than that. All of the advanced yoga
practices are designed to promote ecstasy's natural rise in the nervous
system. Even meditation is ultimately for that, coming from deep inner
silence to union in ecstatic bliss everywhere in the body and beyond. That
is why we call advancedyogapractices, "easy lessons for ecstatic living."
Yet, everyone has their own inclinations in yoga
practice, and honoring each person's tendencies is much more important than
giving everyone the same "cookie cutter" approach to enlightenment. A
technology is good only if it is flexible enough so anyone can use it. That
is why we keep all the practices as simple and direct as possible, and talk
a lot about self-pacing. Each must travel their own way, at their own speed.
The tool kit is here to be used, or not used, as you see fit. If
we don't need a tool now, maybe we will need it later. Like that.
Given your interest, perhaps what you should
consider doing is developing siddhasana. Work your way into it gradually,
and see if it works for you energy-wise. If it doesn't, you can go back to
padmasana. It won't hurt to know both seats. I went though a similar testing
phase many years ago, and ended up in siddhasana for the long haul. I have
stayed a bit left of center because, experientially, it has made perfect
sense to do so. Whatever it is for you will be fully respected.
The guru is in you.
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For instructions on
siddhasana, see the Asanas,
Mudras and Bandas book, and
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