Desperately Seeking Sensation

Sometimes, if I back students out of a pose from the maximum range of motion toward not the maximum range of motion, they say, 'But now I can't feel anything,' or 'Now it feels like I'm not doing anything.' That always stops me in my tracks.

What do you mean? You're not dead. Why can't you feel anything? Are you paying attention?

Notice in the moment when you have the thought, 'I can't feel anything,' whether you immediately seek more intensity in order to feel something so obvious you can't avoid feeling it, or whether you consider pausing, and paying closer attention (aka listening) to sense what is actually already there.

More very quickly becomes excess, not just in asana, but in so many areas of life. Imagine sitting down to a meal. After you take your first bite you think, 'This needs salt.' But what happens if you put too much salt on? Then all you can taste is the salt. But eventually, you become conditioned to so much salt, that the simple food tastes bland without it. Take away the salt, and in time, you can taste your food again.

The same is true with our bodies. If we are always pushing to feel extreme sensation, then we lose our ability to sense the subtle.