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Siddhasana

Siddhasana (Sanskrit: सिद्धासन; IAST: siddhāsana) or Accomplished Pose, is an ancient seated asana in hatha yoga and modern yoga as exercise suitable for meditation.[1] When performed by women it is also called Siddha Yoni Asana. The name Muktasana (Sanskrit: मुक्तासन, Liberated Pose) is sometimes given to the same pose, sometimes to an easier variant.

Contents

Etymology and originsEdit

Siddhasana as pose number 84 in the 19th century Jogapradipika; the yogin is meditating on a tiger skin.

The name comes from the Sanskrit words siddha (सिद्ध) meaning both "perfect" and "adept",[2] and asana (आसन) meaning "posture" or "seat".[3] The name Muktasana comes from मुक्त "mukta" meaning "liberation".[4][5] Ann Swanson notes that the pose is called accomplished as it was the goal of all other asanas to ready the body to sit in meditation in this way.[6]

Siddhasana is one of the oldest asanas, being described as a meditation seat in the 10th century Goraksha Sataka 1.10-12.

DescriptionEdit

From a seated position, one heel is brought to press on the perineum with the sole of the foot flat against the inner thigh. The body sits on top of this heel. Adjustments are made until the body is comfortable and the pressure is firmly applied. Then the opposite ankle is placed over the first, so the ankle bones are touching and the heels are above one another with the top heel pressing the pubis directly above the genitals. The genitals will then lie in between the two heels. The toes and outer edge of the top foot are pushed down into the space between the calf and thigh muscles. The toes of the bottom foot are pulled up into the similar space on the opposite side. The spine is held erect. A small meditation cushion or zafu is sometimes used to help align the back vertically.[7] The same pose for women is sometimes called Siddha Yoni Asana.[8]

VariationsEdit

 
An easier variant with the feet on the ground, sometimes called Muktasana, also used for meditation

Muktasana is either exactly the same as Siddhasana, as stated in the 15th century Hatha Yoga Pradipika, or a variant with the feet close in to the perineum but resting on the ground.[5]

Sukhasana, Easy pose, has the legs crossed at mid-calf. The pose can be supported by sitting on a cushion.[6]

UsageEdit

Siddhasana and Padmasana (Lotus Pose) are traditionally used for dhyana (meditation) and pranayama (breath) exercises.[9][10] Sukhasana (Easy Pose) and Muktasana (with both knees and both feet on the floor) are easier alternatives.

The Hatha Yoga Pradipika says,[11]

When siddhasana is mastered, of what use are the various other postures?[11]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Witold Fitz-Simon - Siddhasana (Accomplished Pose)". Retrieved 4 July 2011.
  2. ^ Feuerstein, Georg; Payne, Larry (5 April 2010). Yoga For Dummies. For Dummies. p. 92. ISBN 978-0-470-50202-0.
  3. ^ Sinha, S. C. (1 June 1996). Dictionary of Philosophy. Anmol Publications. p. 18. ISBN 978-81-7041-293-9.
  4. ^ "Pavana Muktasana". The Yoga Tutor. Retrieved 23 November 2018.
  5. ^ a b "Muktasana". Yogapedia. Retrieved 23 November 2018.
  6. ^ a b Swanson, Ann (2019). Science of yoga : understand the anatomy and physiology to perfect your practice. New York, New York: DK Publishing. p. 46. ISBN 978-1-4654-7935-8. OCLC 1030608283.
  7. ^ Swami Satyananda Saraswati (1996). Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha (PDF). Yoga Publications Trust. p. 100. ISBN 978-81-86336-14-4.
  8. ^ Swami Satyananda Saraswati (1996). Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha (PDF). Yoga Publications Trust. p. 102.
  9. ^ Iyengar, B. K. S. (1979). Light on Yoga. Thorsons. pp. 116–120.
  10. ^ Upadhyaya, Rajnikant; Sharma, Gopal (1 January 2006). Awake Kundalini. Lotus Press. p. 54. ISBN 978-81-8382-039-4.
  11. ^ a b Feuerstein, Georg (22 March 2011). The Path of Yoga: An Essential Guide to Its Principles and Practices. Shambhala Publications. p. 63. ISBN 978-1-59030-883-7.

Further readingEdit