Day eighteen: Coltrane

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In Kathakali, a cloak is raised as per­form­ers pre­pare the next scene.

Health Hut is dry today! No lemon. No banana. No pineap­ple. No this. No that. So at the sug­ges­tion of Ambica, I have cheese toast and herbal cola as I read The Sivananda Companion to Meditation, which I got from the library.

I’m rack­ing my brains to find some­thing that could make this day spe­cial, but so far all I can think of is that it’s 16 days before I leave the Ashram — but that’s already think­ing towards an illu­so­ry future, some­thing yogis advise against.

So back to the present moment: My herbal cola is ready! I guess that’s some­thing spe­cial, since I’m quite thirsty. Yummy! Cheese toast! “Normal” food!! This is a spe­cial day after all.

Saraswati is the deity of wis­dom, the arts, music and lit­er­a­ture.

– The Sivananda Companion to Meditation.

At herbal tea, Saida and I give her crazy pos­sessed Olympus 520 one final whirl and man­age to get the aut­o­fo­cus to work in live-view — kind of. She’ll take it in for main­te­nance when she returns to Amsterdam. I say what that cam­era needs is not main­te­nance but an exor­cism… or rei­ki, per­haps?

We exchange email address­es, hug it out, and just like that anoth­er one of my favorite peo­ple leaves the Ashram… Soham, soham, soham. I’m off to the rooftop for my yoga lec­ture with Janaki.

At the lec­ture, I remem­ber Nada yoga and John Coltrane, who kicked all his addic­tions after hav­ing spent some time in India.

I picked up two books from the Library: Zen Heart, Zen Mind (by AMA Samy, who I over­heard Espabad men­tion a week ago as the fore­most Zen Master in India) and The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche, which Tsering rec­om­mend­ed right before she left. She had a tat­tered copy which she reads once a year.

Shiva Hall is com­plete­ly full, almost per­fect­ly dark, and absolute­ly silent. I want to take some of this full­ness, this dark­ness, and this silence with me when I leave.

Satsang fea­tured a Kathakali dance per­for­mance by Margi Theatre from Trivandrum: Surreal cos­tumes and com­plex mudras, based on the Mahabharata.

Kathakali move­ment is pre­cise and slow.

Performers apply their own elab­o­rate make­up.

All roles are played by male per­form­ers.

Precluded by the heavy make­up, facial ges­tures are sup­port­ed by broad body move­ments.

Kathakali mudras are sim­i­lar to, but more elab­o­rate than, those we use in yoga.

CPR seems anachro­nis­tic in such a clas­si­cal play.

Music in Kathakali is sparse and inci­den­tal.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Lorena April 16, 2010 at 12:46 pm

The first photo.. Wow. That's all I can say.

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Lorena April 16, 2010 at 3:46 pm

The first photo.. Wow. That's all I can say.

Reply

Meedo April 16, 2010 at 12:50 pm

That guy was like 80 years old and he stood there with that thick canvas for what seemed like hours.

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Meedo April 16, 2010 at 3:50 pm

That guy was like 80 years old and he stood there with that thick canvas for what seemed like hours.

Reply

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