04 Jan Warrior ll
Warrior ll one of our most known asana’s and one that draws on an ancient story of love, passion, revenge, death & ultimately shows even the Gods have imperfections like ourselves.
This story begins with Sati the daughter of King Daksha falling in love with the God of destruction Shiva. Shiva with his matted hair, snakes wrapped round his shoulders and entourage of ghosts wasn’t quite what Sati’s father was expecting in a son in law. King Daksha couldn’t accept his daughters choice & failed to see beyond Shiva’s appearance & instead of blessing their love he threw a party to mock & dishonour the God. When Sati finds out the party is taking place she goes to confront her father. When she arrives her heart is broken as she realises her love will never be accepted. With tears in her eyes she throws herself into the fire at the centre of the party & in a moment of pure passion she gives her life.
When Shiva hears of the tragedy his rage consumes him & he throws one of his dreadlocks down to earth which transforms into the great warrior Virabhadra. As the warrior rose (think warrior 1 with your arms searching towards the sky), drew his sword (warrior ll arms open up outstretched) & cut off the head of Daksha. Finally he takes the severed head and places it on a stake (warrior lll reaching forwards).
The gruesome story doesn’t end there! In a flash of cosmic energy Sati is reborn only to see the horror her lover has inflicted upon her father. Again she’s heart broken & demands Shiva make things right. The Lord of the dance does just that. He joins the party himself & pushing the great warrior Virabhadra aside he takes the head of a goat and placing it on Daksha shoulders he breathes life back into him.
While waking up with the head of a goat might not be everyones idea of a happy ending the story shows how everyone, even the Gods sometimes act with anger & make designs that hurt others. Like Shiva we can act on impulses and hurt those around us but just like Shiva when we recognise the error in our ways we should act to reconcile them.
The story also highlights the importance of acceptance. If Shiva & Sati’s love was accepted the series of events that followed would have been avoided. We experience this on an almost daily basis. We can disagree with a persons actions but its not our place to judge or to inflict an unnecessary opinion. When we see situations & actions through the eyes of another & take time to step back, not act on impulse then, more often than not we can find the gift of acceptance. This is a gift for ourselves as much as the other person as we no longer carry the judgemental anger around in our minds or hearts.
To be a strong warrior we should endeavour to cultivate a peaceful & equanimous mind.
Peace & Love