One of books I constantly refer to is “Yoga and the Sacred Fire” by Pandit Dr. David Frawley. Frawley is an American Vedic scholar and a very worthy writer. I bought the book in India – Pondicherry or Mysore, perhaps? – and posted it home. It is a crappy Indian binding, but the information contained within is the only thing of importance.
Frawley discusses in depth the role of Agni (fire) in the practice of yoga. Fire is central to many parts of yogic/ayurvedic thought. First of all, it is one of the main five Elements (Bhutas) of which the entire universe is formed. Secondly, it is one the three main doshas, or characteristics, in the classification of body types. Fire is the transformative element, that which allows creativity to manifest, food to digest, minds to change and the old to give way the the new. Too much fire burns us up, too little leaves us sluggish. As ever, the yogic path is the middle path, the joyful and harmonious seeking of balance.
At my seminar this weekend, my teacher commented on my ability to eat and digest salad in early Springtime. I have a good digestive fire, and my creative fires also burn brightly. This wasn’t always so. Like many women, I tend to retain water in the thighs and often used to find myself dragging from one thing to another, making it through the day, yet exhausted.
I have spent the past few years learning about then cultivating my own inner fire. Part of this process has been the tending of the home fires. In October last year (2012), as winter began to make itself felt, I began trying to light the fire. I found it so incredibly difficult to get it going! I often found myself spending 45 minutes in front of the grate, blowing uselessly on burning twigs. I even bitched about it on Facebook, and got the expected comments about making a tee-pee and using small stuff at the bottom. Thanks, I knew that part already.
Nowadays, I’ll have you know, I am a one-match girl. I can get that fire lit in about five minutes and the house warm in an hour. I also find myself with much more spirit, a crackling, happy sort of energy, not brittle at all. Here, I leave you with a short clip of last night’s merry fire. I hope it brings you warmth and joy. https://vimeo.com/62053010