Studio Talks with Richard Freeman: Gazing Drsti
An Exploration of the Subtle Aspects of Yoga
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Since 1968, Richard Freeman has devoted his life to studying, practicing, and teaching all aspects of yoga. He lived in India for more than eight years studying a variety of yoga traditions. A long time student of K. Pattabhi Jois of Mysore, Richard is the director of The Yoga Workshop in Boulder, Colorado. In this series of informal talks given at his studio, Richard shares his knowledge on a wide range of the more subtle aspects of yoga.
Placement of the gaze on a single point inside or outside helps the mind to flow into single pointed meditation. In each posture there is a specific Drsti, or gaze, which is sometimes modified as one goes deeper into the practice. The place of gazing can be the tip of the nose, the center of the eyebrows, the tip of the thumb or a finger, the center of the palm, the navel, the big toe, or on the horizon straight ahead or to the side.
Gazing is also an important part of the integrated movement that links the postures together. The direction of the movement of the eye radically affects muscular tensions in the neck, shoulders, and throat. These normally unconscious reflexes should be studied closely, because they can make profound differences in movement throughout the body.