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Monday, May 11, 2015

5 Tibetans

By J. Lunau (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
Readers, things are looking good. I’ve got my chakras spinning in the right direction. They’re
opening up. Life force is flowing through me. I’m going to live forever.

No, seriously, I do have my chakras spinning in the right direction. I didn’t know they spun, but apparently they do. Counter-clockwise. That’s right. I know this because down the Twitter feed one day came a link to a video on the 5 Tibetan Rites, and I followed that link to YouTube, where I wasted – spent – a good amount of time watching people performing these "rites", also known as exercises, and giving some countermanding advice, one to the other. Spin clockwise. Spin counter-clockwise. Palms up - no, down. Do everything quickly.  Do everything slowly. There are many opinions. Of course, Dr. Oz is in on it. But still, I gleaned that my chakras need to spin for me to be eternally youthful, at least until the moment I am no longer.

Then I went to Pilates and asked my fabulous teacher if he knew about the 5 Tibetans. I could tell he would be into it, because along with Pilates, he practices yoga and meditates. And now he has me  implementing what he learned at a class on the Alexander Method. He's the kind of person who exercises while watching TV. That would not fly in my house, let me tell you. The husband would not be happy. Anyway, Brian hadn’t heard about them, but assured me he would look it up. Maybe this week, we’ll incorporate some spinning work into our Reformer stuff.

I won’t go into the whole 5 Tibetans, I’ll let you look them up, just like Brian. Suffice it to say that they come to us via some American who encountered an Englishman who traveled to Tibet in the early 1900s and met a lama (not a llama, a lama), so you can see that this information comes directly from The Source. Anyway, apparently this lama offered to show the English gent a yoga routine that only takes a few minutes but will allow you to live forever. Or at least very healthily until you are dead. The lama was unmentionably old, apparently, possibly Abrahamic in his age. But very youthful.

I have incorporated the 5 Tibetans into my morning routine. An abundance of caution, or superstition, or that awful feeling you get when you get a chain letter or email has led me to it. Don't pass up this chance for eternal youthfulness until you are dead or you'll be sorry. And dead.

So, now, after my sun salutations and my physical therapy stretches - because I don’t want to break the chain, the Seinfeld chain, of successive days I’ve done sun salutations - I spin counterclockwise and so on.  And I feel great (except for the few recent days when I felt sick and had a fever, but never mind). And my hair isn't grey.

The 5 Tibetans remind me of a move from Masunaga's Zen Imagery Exercises. What are those, you say? Well, back in the 1990s, one of my roommates dated a modern dancer and this dancer had a teacher who introduced her to these exercises that were supposed to get the chi flowing through all your meridians and guarantee eternal life and so on. Or at least get your chi flowing. I did those for awhile, and then life went on. The chi flowed. However, my back gave out, due to my repetitive stress injury from my boring data entry job, my roommate broke up with the dancer, and the dancer moved on. Where are you, Joy? 

What is the point here, you wonder? Well, I torment my family with these words of wisdom, "It is almost always better to exercise." Regular exercise has been part of my life forever. And that is my point, Readers. Exercise is elemental to success. 

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