Yoga art exhibit coming to Washington DC


16 Responses to “Yoga art exhibit coming to Washington DC”

  1. Is it even possible to attain enlightenment without the body? Even a tenuous bodily attachment must be maintained – without bodily sensors it would seem impossible to attain enlightenment. This is why a Bodhisattva returns to the body and to earthly things. The Bodhisattva is so “far out” that he or she needs to be grounded in the Earth and its goings-on. I wish I lived on the East Coast in order to see this exhibit.

    • SedanChair says:

      Even a tenuous bodily attachment must be maintained – without bodily sensors it would seem impossible to attain enlightenment. This is why a Bodhisattva returns to the body and to earthly things. 

      Seems legit

      • The elusive myth of “enlightenment” is one of the longest standing myths of Humankind. Enlightenment is held out in front of initiates like a carrot. “Practice, sit or twist yourself into various postures and empty your mind and you will be enlightened” say the Holy Masters. It’s similar to how investment specialists con the un-wise into making bad investments…”just invest a little bit more and you’ll be a millionaire in no time!” – not sayin’ that yoga is bad, though. It’s always good for people to stretch.

        • Antinous / Moderator says:

          If it makes you happy to believe that…

          • Let’s just say that an empty enlightenment is no enlightenment at all. For me, a decent enlightenment must include people (firstly) and pets (definitely) and good food (nothing wrong with a slice of tofurken) and myriad other beauties of Life. So many times, enlightenment is sold as some sort of sterile boot camp (like Crossfit) – Be Here Now sez Ram Dass…be here now.

        • miasm says:

          Practising the art of calming yourself, of actively de-stressing yourself by using breathing techniques and different postures is well represented in Freud, Jung, and later, Reich specifically.
          Though, perhaps it is wrong to ‘push’ Samsara as some spiritual object to be attained, consumed.

          I think even a dry appreciation of the lengthy purging of stress from the body leading to higher functioning states of the brain, measurable by fMRI, need not be disparaged as some laughably unattainable, gaudy, spiritual window dressing.

          • miasm says:

            I misunderstood OP

          • The problem is that whereas one can define a “potato” or a “piece of paper” the definition of “enlightenment” is elusive. I think most people might think of it as freedom from credit card bills or freedom from an abusive spouse.

            Sitting or performing Yoga positions (or simply ) breathing seems like the lazy man’s way of bolstering one’s Being. Besides, there’s a certain kind of “ZEN” in power jogging and getting full bicep tattoos.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            Maybe you could read something about yoga and find out. Start with the Kleshas.

          • miasm says:

            In reply to RK
            In all seriousness; in my experience only very powerful drugs approach the kind of experience I think you are talking about.
            The ‘sudden enlightenment’, the englishing of which always sounds so ersatz and corny, is an experience so assuredly repeatable, so shocking to the practitioner that it can have the effect of resetting a persons… ‘alignment’?
            I’ve heard Leary and RAW describe how the powerful and sometimes harrowing experience of taking LSD could reset, or acclimatise a person to their surrounding environment (whatever that may include) as they came off the trip.
            Unfortunately, as with all religion, the sudden enlightenment grabs devotees with  dubious means.
            See ‘David Wants to Fly‘ for a take on how one of my heroes fell victim to, or is making a spectacular example of, a cult that uses an effective meditation technique to financially hook you.

          • miasm says:

            I just realised my prior comment says “…in my experience only very powerful drugs help approach the kind of mind-state…”
            I meant that only very powerful drugs help, outside of some form of meditative practice.
            Which I obviously need to be more engaged with. :)

  2. I wonder if the curators have read Mark Singleton’s Yoga Body: The Origins of Modern Posture Practice… (Long summary here: Estian Smit - Mark Singleton’s Yoga Body: The Origins of Modern Posture Practice – A Synopsis, Review and Personal Perspective [PDF].)

  3. Vinnie Tesla says:

    I just want to  say that that picture on the right is made of win.

    • Vinnie Tesla says:

       I admit that I am, however, unclear on precisely the mechanism by which yoga helps you repel giant man-eating snakes,

      • Antinous / Moderator says:

        It might calm you down enough to help you realize that there aren’t really any man-eating snakes. Although it wouldn’t help you much if you ran into Ophiophagus hannah.

  4. Art says:

    The artworks shown on the Smithsonian site are absolutely magnificent! Thanks for the post.

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