Sunday, November 18, 2012

Mosh pits and yoga don't mix well

There is a funny phenomenon on Friday and Sunday mornings in Mysore, before the guided classes.  Huddled outside the gate at 4:25 AM (shala time) about 80 yoga students jump when Prakash (Sharath's gatekeeper/babysitter/friend/?) comes stumbling bleary-eyed down the steps and unlocks the gate to let the rabid mob in.  As soon as that gate is open a millimeter, the mosh pit begins, sans music, sadly.   It is an un-nerving experience at that early hour, and it is a bit incongruous with the fact that we are all meant to be going in there to do some yoga.  Where is the ahimsa in elbowing someone out of the way, just to get your favorite spot, front row center?  Jeepers.  The 6AM bunch is a similar experience, but they are lined up on the shala steps instead of outside the gate.  Lucky for me, I get to avoid this exercise in ridiculousness altogether on Sundays because the intermediate class isn't full at the moment, so even if you are the last one in the door, there will be a spot left.   And quite frankly, I couldn't care less what spot I get, any day of the week.  Sharath has eyes in the back of his head, just like mums do, so wherever you go in that room, he sees you, even when you think he can't possibly be looking.  The whole issue of getting a certain spot is quite widespread in the shala, and I have been there myself, truth be told, but I can't figure out why. My second visit in particular, I was quite attached to a spot in the third row, but why I liked it so much, I have no idea.  On Mysore practices now I wait for the mosh pit to push it's way up the steps and walk up behind them without any worry of errant elbows, and I try and avoid a spot in the front row, just so that I don't have to worry about any ticktock vs stage conflicts, but other that that, I go wherever.  There is a growing group of people waiting out the crowds, so maybe eventually it will be a small group of frothing elbowers, and a big group of people waiting back, saying, "no madam, after you,"  "no, madam, I insist, after you!"  How nice would that be.  Really and truly, mosh pits and yoga don't mix.  Each at their own time fine.  Mixing?  Not correct method.

In other mosh pit news, I went in to the city yesterday to go to the bookstore, and made a trip through Devaraj Market.  On a Saturday afternoon, this is a slightly crazy thing to do.  The crowds in there are at maximum capacity.  It makes it easier to avoid the multitude of young men trying to sell you bangles and scented oils though, and I managed to mosey through gathering less attention than normal.   There is a small stall selling old prints of deities in the back corner of the market, and I made my way over there just to look, but managed to find a very love-able Ganesha print that looks like it is from long ago.  It came home with me, so facing the chaos was well worthwhile.

Three weeks left on the clock for this trip.  That is a limited number of mosh pit avoidance moments left to be had, although going back to Bondi in December may mean facing something similar on the beach...  what to do?

  

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