At Its Deepest
Even on this most Yin day of the year— the Winter Solstice— Yang is present. And as depicted by the Taoist symbol where a white dot resides within the black paisley, and conversely a black within the white, neither is an absolute. Not unlike the idea of Zero Point Energy, where molecular vibration persists even in the vacuum of empty space— that shade at a temperature of absolute zero— Yang stirs at its nadir, within the extreme Yin.
On a Tangible Level
Yin and Yang are relative, complementary, continuously changing and only meaningful when an observer is there to appreciate the contrast.
Consider if you will dipping your hands into one of three buckets of water, each of differing temperature. At once you put the left into cold, 40°F water, the right into hot, 120°F water and note the sensations. Then, place both into tepid, 80°F water and observe. What’s your experience?
Clearly none of these experiences is static. Even as the first immersion feels cold to the left hand and hot to the right, the left hand is already warming the water while the right is cooling it. This dynamic is shown by the swirling image of the Tao. Of course, once submerged in the tepid water the experience is immediately reversed.
I couldn’t have asked Nature to illustrate this any more literally than through tonight’s full moon punctuating the darkness of the year’s longest night. This Yin yoga class is in tribute.
Here’s the series—
- Seiza— kneeling, shins on floor, sitting on heels: 5′
- Supported Back Extension— lying supine, block beneath sacrum: 10′
- Caterpillar— seated forward fold over outstretched legs: 10′
- Sphinx— prone backbend using elbows for support: 5′
- Seal— prone backbend using hands for support: 5′
- Gambling— deep squat: 10′
- Cat Tail Right— lying side twist with top arm reaching back to grasp bottom foot: 5′
- Cat Tail Left— lying side twist with top arm reaching back to grasp bottom foot: 5′
- Saddle— kneeling, supine back bend: 10′
- Pentacle— lying supine, palms up, tip of index finger resting on thumbnail: 8′
- Seiza— kneeling, shins on floor, sitting on heels: 2′
Here’s the soundtrack—
Tibetan Monks Chanting with Every 3 Minutes a Tibetan Bowl | Reiki Hands of Light
Here’s the meditation—
In coming and going, there is neither sickness nor distress.
Companions come without fault.
Returning is its Tao.
In seven, returning comes.
Gain by having a place to go.
— King Wen
Hexagram 24 “Returning” is associated with the Winter Solstice & the 11th moon. Earth trigram atop Thunder trigram; a Yang sliver of light patiently awaits rising from beneath a Yin mountain of darkness. A submerged dragon.