A short interview on yoga

From a zine by Khristine Jones of 9th Limb Yoga.

Questions by Khristine / answers by DV D’Andrea, Samaritan Press

How did you start practicing yoga ?

I started at a small gym in north Portland. Almost immediately, despite feeling inflexible, tired, and unfocused, I recognized its positive affect on my being. I soon began connecting with like minded yogis in Portland and worldwide. The shared experience and desire to learn with other people was a big inspiration for me to move beyond those first few years of gym yoga. Once I found the Ashtanga system it provided the sort of structure and intention I had hoped for in a spiritual practice.

What does yoga mean to you ?

Yoga is a way to live. I envision it as a winding path through an over grown and never ending garden. On that path I can see tomorrow morning’s practice and also the practice in 5, 10, and 20 years from tomorrow in whatever form it takes.

Yoga reminds me that everything is in a constant state of change and flux. Purusa is the sense deep within us that can recognize the true nature of all things, including the fact that they are in a state of constant change. 

How has practice influenced your art? 

Yoga has influenced my artwork on many levels.

On a literal level, while in asana or seated meditation I might be graced with an idea, work out a composition, or move past a specific mental fatigue. 

Because of yoga I’ve delved into the texts like the Yoga Sutras or Bhagavad Gita which are overflowing with incredible Hindu deities and stories that spark so many ideas.

Much of my artwork is about leaving the earthly body and its limitations but in turn the asana practice reminds me of its beauty and strength through the physical challenges. This dichotomy is very interesting to me.

I think that yoga informs my work in a very perceptible way because, though much of my subject matter is seemingly dark, it expresses the inner light of yoga.