Spanda: Secret of Life

Spanda

Life’s Little Secret

What is Spanda

Spanda is one of the foundational teachings from the ancient tantric philosophies – to be clear I am referring to the yoga traditions not the modern westernized term for sexual practices. Spanda refers to the pulse of the universe, the essence of life’s natural cycle and rhythm that is always occurring. What that really means is that everything in life is either moving toward expansion or contraction. For example, A seed that drops from a flower at the end of its life lands on the ground in a contracted state of pure potential. If that seed makes its way into the dirt, receives enough water and sunlight it will move towards its expansion. The seed will begin to grow roots downward, and eventually flowers upward. The Seed represents limitless potential, while the flower is the manifestation of that potential. At the end of its life the flower drops several seeds on to the earth and the cycle of potential begins yet again. The teaching is a reminder that all phases of the seeds life are natural and inevitable. Even in its death it leaves behind potential.

SEEING SPANDA IN OUR LIFE  

At first this teaching can be something nice to think about, however when you really observe your life you will begin to notice that it exists everywhere. Knowing that there is always a cycle of potential and manifestation perhaps we could be less surprised and shaken when the projects, relationships, and circumstances of our life die and come back to the pure state of potential. The issue most of us face emotionally is that we believe everything that is happening now will continue to happen forever. This causes us tremendous suffering on both sides. Do you agree? Have you ever taken for granted the good things in your life? Have you lost something or someone special and spent far too long not moving forward? Yes we all have, and this is where the teaching becomes helpful, reminding us of the nature pulse of the universe, that sometimes we are the seed, eager to attain what we need in order to dig our roots into the earth and grow tall into our fullest manifestation. The eagerness is great, but it usually turns into impatience, forcefulness or a retraction into the protective state of being where we give up far too soon wishing there was a short cut. On the other side there are aspects of our life where we are the flower, manifested and full of beauty. We all love this part of of the process because it feels like everything is going the way we want it to. The potential downfall is either taking for granted the beauty of our life, or simply lacking the clarity to see what we have created, or who we have become. Look at your life, where is your potential, can you embrace the process, step into it and let it unfold with every step? Look at what you have already created, can you see it clearly without the lease of insecurity and self doubt and find gratitude for who you have become and what you have built? 

Where can I practice with teachers who talk about spanda?

Chromatic Yoga Teacher’s around the world are teaching about Spanda in their classes, find one near you at www.ChromaticYoga.com  

Embrace your potential

Most of our life is spent realizing our potential. To truly love life we must enjoy both the expansion and the contraction. This requires the ability to see the direction of your your actions. If you know where you are going and that you will get there, than you can relax right where you are now.

The Joy of Spanda

At first the teaching of spanda was hard for me to embrace. I was annoyed at it in the beginning but I could see with great clarity that it was a teaching rooted in truth not belief. It took some time to stop resisting the truth, as I wanted to believe that if I practiced enough yoga and self awareness I could life a life that is always in that sweet spot of expansion. The essence of what I was wanting was to feel the joy and freedom that I felt in the expanded states of life, and over time I realized that I could feel that regardless of the phase of spanda that my life was in. This is not about avoiding sadness, pain or the challenges of life, its simply about having perspective and recognizing that life is a gift – ALL of it.

To apply this approach to the body,  I recommend practicing you check out Hips: Rock and Unlock ‘Em! This online workshop is a journey through what I call the 4 quadrants of the hips, supporting you on the path toward mastery of the inner thighs, outer hips, posterior chain, and hip flexors. 

Elements of Mastery

The most in-depth online yoga immersion offered by Matt Giordano. This immersion contains several full length workshops focusing on how the body relates to nature’s elements : Earth, Water, Fire, Air, & Space. In addition to deepening your physical practice you will learn anatomy, adjustments and the approach to Mastery!

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The Transformation Equation

The Transformation Equation

 

 

A.C.T

Deep inside every one of us exists a desire to be the best we can be during this short time that we have here in this life. It may be covered up by insecurities, shame, guilt, or the business of our day to day lives. You owe it to yourself to live a life that feels amazing and has a positive impact on everyone around you. Reading this means you are already stepping in the right direction, only those called toward a path of self-awareness would get excited enough at the word “transformation”. Most would be terrified of the word and back away entirely. Acknowledge your courage and continue seeking the tools that support your growth.  

A.C.T is the acronym I use for the Transformation Equation, it stands for Awareness + Conscious Action = Transformation. Before we go over what I mean by this lets first get clear of one thing. Transformation in the spiritual sense of the word is not the same as change. Change is inevitable, it’s happening all around us, within us and it is unstoppable. Try to take control and stop change and you will always lose as it is a law of life. On the other hand, Transformation is a choice. While everyone longs to transform their lives and live at their highest potential, few are willing to risk the comforts of the known over the adventure of the unknown. Stepping into your potential is not without risk, you can try and calculate it but ultimately you have no idea what lies ahead. All you can control is what you do with the time that you have. Do you choose to face the challenges that are required for you to step up into your potential, or do you sit back living in the known stagnancy of day to day tasks? 

Dance With The Flames

Do you have struggle with tight or weak hips, low back discomfort, or emotional stress? This workshop will provide you with a step by step approach to increase flexibility,  strength and peace of mind. Evoke your inner fire and dance through life, the journey starts now!

AwARENESS + CONSCIOUS ACTION = TRANSFORMATION

    Step 1. Awareness

    Awareness is required before action if you want your efforts to produce positive outcomes. Action without awareness will still be productive but as we know it often causes burn out and unfavorable results. Awareness can only be built through routine exercises of self-inquiry and observation. Self-inquiry is focused contemplation, asking yourself the questions to better understand your patterns of behavior. Most people are terrified of self-awareness simply because they don’t want to see all the aspects of themselves that they do not like. While it is true that you will see the darkness of who you are, you will also grow to see your amazing light that permeates every cell of your body. You cannot see your inner magnificence without cleaning off the lense that you see your self through, which means you’ll have to be willing to see aspects of yourself that you are not proud of. No matter how much we each deny it we all want to be the best we can be and that requires facing our internal challenges, cleaning our lense of perception and inquiring about who we are and why. Self-inquiry takes tremendous courage but as a result, we become self-aware, grateful for the person that we are, relaxed in our being, confident, filled with love to give, able to receive, more productive, less burnt out, more joyful and so on. 

    Step 2: Conscious action

    Action in alignment with awareness leads to profound results. Conscious Action requires awareness in every step, re-evaluation, and clear communication with anyone you are carrying out the actions with. Awareness produces a clarity inside of who you are and what you want to create with the time you have in this body. However, without Conscious Action, you can never grow into your potential. Potential is a trajectory, a path that you walk not a destination. Your potential could simply be to become a kind-hearted, loving human being, or it might be bigger than that: one who pulls others around them into their potential. Your potential will always grow as you take steps toward it – stay in tune through self-inquiry, and Consciously take action in alignment with it. 

    Result: Transformation

    Transformation is the inevitable result of your awareness and actions. The choice to transform your current life for the person you are becoming is one that very few people take in this life. Transformation can not happen without Awareness because without seeing your own magnificence you can never expand upon it. If all you see is your self-doubt and insecurities, and you spend your energy hiding them from the majority of people you connect with you will never have the energy to move forward. Do you choose to hide or do you choose to get courageous, see and share yourself, and expand into the person you are becoming? Watch the video below to see more about how to make use of the transformation equation and build the courage to step into your magnificence potential, you deserve it. 

    Create a Life You Love

    Place your energy on what you want to create in your life so that the short life that you get to live is filled with love! If you are lookin to go deeper, I taught and recorded a workshop live called Dance with the Flames  which uses the theme of stepping into the fire of transformation in order live the life you deserve. I sincerely hope you make use of the transformation equation and it serves you for the many years to come!.Please share your comments, questions and experiences. I look forward to hearing from you.

    DANCE WITH THE FLAMES

    A rare and exciting experience that will take you through an incredible adventure in both body and mind.  If you are looking to step into the fire of transformation so you can joyfully dance with the flames, this is the perfect workshop. Filmed was filmed live to bring you the fullness of energy! 

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    Newsletter

    When You Subscribe You Will Instantly Get Access To

    • The Technique Pack: 15 Yoga Pose Breakdowns
    • Exclusive Online Course Discounts 
    • Exclusive Blogs and Videos
    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

    Still Have Questions? Email Matt Directly

    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

    UNLOCK YOUR HIPS

    UNLOCK YOUR HIPS

     OUTER HIP STRENGTH AND FLEXIBILITY FOR THE LOW BACK AND S.I. JOINT

     

    THE LOW BACK AND S.I. JOINT

    Low back pain, or S.I. Joint instability are quite common for many people and the cause seems to be a mystery. What most people done realize is that pain is usually the result of weak, or under developed muscles resulting in over compensations of other muscles. In other words, the body develops patterns that are perhaps not the best when it comes to our well being. Why does it develop patterns? All of nature adapts to the environment. As beings of nature we do exactly the same thing – the body adapts to what we give it. If we give it a shape and hold that shape for the majority of the day then it will develop patterns of elongated muscles and shortened muscles. Some of the muscles that tend to cause problems for the low back that are often over looked are the ABDUCTORS of the Hips. 3 of themuscles that make up the abductos are the Gluteus medius, Gluteus Minimus and T.F.L. You can see in the photo to the right (or below if you’re on mobile) that the gluteus medius attaches to each side of the pelvis and to the top of the thigh bone. 

    LOW BACK PAIN

    The two sides of the pelvis are actually independently mobile structures due to the sacrum that lies in the middle which has a joint on either side that is called the S.I. Joint. This joint allows the pelvis on each side to move. This is a blessing but could also be a curse if the abductor muscles are out of balance. If one side is tight and the other flexible this could cause the pelvis to tilt, potentially resulting in low back discomfort, or scoliosis. This was the case for me.

    Growing up I played Hockey which strengthens the abductors. Unfortunately I favored my right leg significantly which caused an over development and shortening of the musculature on the right side resulting in scoliosis and back pain throughout high school and college until about a year into yoga when I finally learned how to unlock my hips!

    S.I JOINT

    Now for other people, the low back isn’t affected but the S.I. Joint is. This seems to be most common amongst women, especially those that have had children – the ligaments tend to me more lax and so the sacrum can move inside the two sides of the pelvis resulting in pain on the beck of the pelvis or radiating through the lower back near the pelvis and sacrum.

    THE SOLUTION

    There are many muscles that surround the pelvis that can pull on either side of the ilium or sacrum which could create pain, so where do we begin? Often times it can be overwhelming and ineffective to target all the hips and back muscles every yoga practice and so it is useful to focus on one area per practice. In the video below I share with you ways of working on the Abductor group for strength and range of motion. You may find that one side is not as strong as the other – if this is the case I recommend strengthening the weaker side which will help bring the abductors into balance. 

    I do have a workshop called Hips: Rock and Unlock Em that I created as a way to target as many of these muscles within one practice. You could start there to get a feel for what areas of your hips are underdeveloped or out of balance.

    In addition I highly recommend the JULY IMMERSION which focuses on the Chakras. The first 5 practices of that immersion will awaken your strength, flexibility and awareness of the muscles that surround the hips. 

    OPEN YOUR HIPS AND HEART

    The July Immersion takes you on a 12 Class Journey through the Chakras and the elements, to develop your strength, flexibility and awareness of each energy center and the corresponding muscles. There is a heavy focus on the Hips in the Earth, & Water classes, and the Back in the Water and Air classes, balanced by Core strengthening in the Fire section.

    THE STEP BY STEP APPROACH

    “Dream big, start small, then connect the dots.” This quote from Dan Millman’s Wisdom of the Peaceful Warrior has been the foundation of my yoga practice from the moment I stepped on the yoga mat. It was that book that led my to yoga in the first place, and that line that became a mantra in my head from that moment on. How does it apply to the asana practice? Most people come into the yoga practice and feel something magnificent and of course they want to come back. At some point, regardless of how egoless we believe ourselves to be, we become attracted to the external postures of the yoga practice. It’s typically innocent of course, we associate a feeling with certain postures, on a subtle level we believe that we attain them we will feel strong, powerful, fearless, light, free, at peace, worthy of love, kindness etc. On an intellectual level we usually know that this is not reality but we get pulled into it anyway. The beautiful thing is that we are being pulled into practice and the practice reveals what we need to learn. So I wouldn’t ridicule this process, but rather as you walk the path remind yourself that everything you wish to feel already exists within you and rather than expecting yoga to do the practice for you, step into. the feeling you crave and let that amplify your practice. This is what it means to practice with intention.  

    All that being said while we are living in this body we want to take care of it and allow it to reach its highest potential which includes movement practices, stability practices, dietary, hygiene, mental health, creative expression, and so on. When I say highest potential, I don’t mean an end result or destination but rather a trajectory that gets us to walk the path. The purposes of this blog is to support your physical well-being in regards to your body. Asana is the practice that cultivates our body awareness, but most of us focus on the postures instead of our body and as a result we are left with thousands of shapes and alignment cues. A short cut to body awareness is to put your body first, and the pose second! What does that mean? There are only a few major joints to learn in the body, and each has a few movements available to it. There are muscles that surround each joint that create this movement. If you use your asana practice to become aware, proficient or even masterful in each movement then you will no long be perplexed when you see a new pose, you will know exactly what is need to put your body in that shape. You will grow to understand your limitations and your abilities becoming your own best teacher.  

    THE CHROMATIC SYSTEM 

    I created Chromatic Yoga based on this concept of small steps toward our potential. Each month we have a focus in our classes, a Physical Through-Line (PTL), and a Thematic Through-Line (TTL).  The PTL is the one muscle group or joint action that we pull through an entire class, or workshop, while the TTL is the similar but for building awareness of the mind and subtle energies of life. Because I encourage Chromatic Teachers to be authentic with how they teach, each will have their own way of creatively sharing the PTL and TTL. This month PTL – Abductors of the hip, is the focus of the video below. These are just a few ways to strengthen and become aware of the muscles. 

    To find a Chromatic Yoga Teacher near you be sure to visit us at www.ChromaticYoga.com 

    3 Steps to Master the Abductors

    1. Awareness: learn the sensation of activating the abductors
    2. Strengthen: the muscle group through various postures in your yoga practice.
    3. Practice: activate the abductors over the course of time, through as many yoga postures as possible until you can easily activate them on command in any posture!.

    Step 1. Awareness

    The first step to building awareness of any muscle is to intellectually understand where it exists in the body. The abductor group is generally located in the outer hip/pelvic region. In addition to the intellectual understanding you must learn what it feels like to activate this muscle. For this its typically easiest to “create a boundry” and press into it. So here I have placed a hand outside the knee and I press into the hand which creates the action of abduction and engages the abductors. 

    Step 2: strengthen

    Next you will want to develop strength in accessible postures. Typically choosing static postures for “isometric” engagement is a safe and stable way to strength. Isometric means activate the muscle without movement of the joints. For this video I chose Chair pose to share with you. With feet about hip width apart, push your yoga mat apart with your heals while keeping your knees pointing straight forward. Note: if your pelvis is tucked under you may not be able to access the abductors, stick your buttocks upward.

    Step 3: Practice

    Lastly you will need to learn how to activate this muscle group through range of motion. This means not only choosing a wide range of static yoga postures to activate the abductors in, you will also want to do the movements that it creates. For this I chose fire hydrant pose, both abducting the upper hip by lifting the leg up high, and the lower hip by squeezing the pelvis inward. Because the foot is on the ground, moving and rotating the pelvis away from the foot is abduction. You will feel it in your outer hip muscles.

    Mastery Leads to Discernment

    Why become masterful at anything? Mastery is not an end goal, it is simply a state of heightened awareness and capability. To become masterful in your physical body is not a chore but rather a privilege. Getting to know this vehicle that we have for only a short period time is a form of respect and love. There is no end to mastery, just like there is no end to potential, its simply a trajectory, or path that we walk out of respect to the greater energy that pulses through us. Mastery simply means that we can asses what is appropriate for the well being of our body at any given time, and we have the tools to do whats necessary to feel better. While we will always have blind spots, we can minimize the vast amount of guesswork by taking the step by step approach to understanding our body – one muscle group or joint action at a time.

    To apply this approach to the body,  I recommend practicing The July Immersion – 12 Yoga Classes, 4 Guided Meditations – and Hips: Rock and Unlock ‘Em!  online workshop is a journey through what I call the 4 quadrants of the hips, supporting you on the path toward mastery of the inner thighs, outer hips, posterior chain, and hip flexors. 

    Hips: Rock & Unlock 'Em

    Get 2 full hours with Matt Giordano focusing on the techniques that increase the range of motion in your hips and provide long lasting freedom. You will have immediate, unlimited access, and can enjoy the benefits today!

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    BEST STARTER PACKAGE

    • 6 YOGA CLASSES
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    Continue Learning

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    5 Step Pigeon Pose Best Hip Stretch

    5 STEPS TO MAKE PIGEON POSE THE BEST HIP STRETCH IS YOUR PIGEON LAZY? PIGEONDOES PIGEON POSE INCREASE FLEXIBILITYIs Pigeon pose the best hip stretch? The quick answer, it depends how you do it. Somebody told me recently on instagram that I was blessed with open hips....

    read more
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    read more
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    Flip Dog Dilemma – 3 Shoulder Actions for Wild Thing. Is the popular yoga pose “FLIP DOG” worth it? If you practice or have been to a modern vinyasa or power yoga class than you know that flip dog is a popular posture that is called out somewhere toward…

    read more
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    Samadhi

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    read more
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    View Details

    Hips Workshop

    In this workshop you will practice specific techniques to open your hips, finding greater rang of motion and freedom. Each action in the body is carefully layered and clearly articulated to provide you with success.

    View Details

    Dance With The Flames

    Change is Inevitable but transformation is a choice. Step into the fire and dance amongst the flames in this live workshop! You will get the full energy of being in the class room, strengthen your hips, and free your heart.

    View Details

    Newsletter

    When You Subscribe You Will Instantly Get Access To

    • The Technique Pack: 15 Yoga Pose Breakdowns
    • Exclusive Online Course Discounts 
    • Exclusive Blogs and Videos
    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

    Still Have Questions? Email Matt Directly

    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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