Bali in 06

Style: Ashtanga
Teacher: Matthew MacKenzie
Studio: Prana Shanti

In the heat, as beads of sweat build up and trickle down my my body, I have visions of a Balinese sun. It beats down from high overhead. I'm in the jungle. I hear an orchestra of insects harmonizing with a symphony of tropical birds. The lush plant life surrounds me in this exotic paradise. My mat is stretched out in a clearing and I'm dancing through the physics of tradition. Suddenly I sense eyes watching me from the edge of the forest, camouflaged in the foliage. Squinting against the blinding sunshine, my eyes meet with the eyes of a massive crouching tiger. It can tell I've noticed it and it hunches down in the tall grass, lying in wait. Before I have a chance to turn and run for my life, it leaps out of its hiding place and races at me, letting out a ferocious growl. It bears down on me and leaps into the air, claws extended, white teeth flashing in the sun. I feel its body crash into me, tearing my skin and pinning me to the ground. I can feel her teeth sink in as her full weight rests on top of me. I can't move. As my blood begins to flow and form a puddle around me, staining the grass in vibrant red, I struggle and writhe for an escape. It's impossible. Her powerful jaws pull the flesh from my bones and I submit to my fate. My heart continues to pound as I'm violently torn limb from limb, my consciousness refusing to flicker out and spare me from this horror movie. Soon her cubs make their appearance. They close in around their mother, inspecting their newly captured meal. I hear them sniffing and grunting, hungrily scratching new wounds on the canvas of my body. Like psychopathic tattoo artists they redesign my appearance. I can feel the heat from their breath as they begin to feed, their hot tongues as they lap up the flowing blood. The family of tigers rest in a circle around me, enjoying a lazy afternoon snack under the jungle canopy, concealing any evidence of my murder. The contents of my stomach are revealed, my organs strewn out around me, shredded beyond recognition. All I can do is watch helplessly as I'm eaten alive. I feel no pain but I wonder why I haven't died yet. I'm absolutely alive and forced to watch. Now and then my eyes lock with the eyes of the giant cat, her feral feline stare piercing my soul. I sense mild compassion trumped by indifference. The show must go on, the circle of life unstoppably continues its spiral.

My mind is not focused on this yoga class. I'm not quite halfway around the world yet but I'm not here either. I'm lost in a hallucination. Will I be devoured by my dream? All the things I've been working on, will they be my final demise? Will the end I've been working towards eventually break me? Will I be massacred by my own creations?


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