About The Book
Mahamudra, literally the great gesture, is looked upon within the tantric traditions of Tibet and Northern India as the highest manifestation of consciousness known. In Yoga of the Mahamudra Will Johnson explains that the body is the vehicle that brings the ecstatic energies of God to earth. To arrive at the entrance to higher consciousness, one must first establish a great gesture of the body—physical balance—which is best expressed through spontaneous movement and dance. By utilizing the mystical yoga of balance one can create what he calls the embodied cross—an embodiment of free-flowing and unfettered life force—thereby opening the door to higher consciousness.
He presents three simple yogic principles from Tilopa's Song of Mahamudra. The first principle, do nothing with the body but relax, forms the vertical axis of the embodied cross. It is an internal process that focuses on the upright structure of the body and opens up our relationship to the divine source. The second principle, Let the mind cling to nothing, allows the horizontal flow of energy to our mind. This horizontal axis represents our relationship to the world: what we see and hear, and what our mind does with the objects we perceive. The establishment of these vertical and horizontal flows of energy allows us to embody the third principle, to become like a hollow bamboo. In this way the body and mind become extraordinarily fluid, surrendering to the currents of the life forces that constantly flow through them like air through a flute. The author concludes with a number of somatic koans, ecstatic exercises that allow the direct experience of balance and provide the practitioner with a palpable embodied awareness of his or her fundamental union with the Divine.
Will Johnson is the founder and director of the Institute for Embodiment Training, which combines Western somatic psychotherapy with Eastern meditations practices. He is the author of The Posture of Meditation; the award-winning Rumi: Gazing at the Beloved; and The Sailfish and the Sacred Mountain. He lives in British Columbia.