asana (äˈsə-nə)

n. Any of various bodily positions assumed in yogic excercise.

In Buddhism, there are known three marks of existence:

  1. Anicca : the truth of impermanence
  2. Annata : the truth of no self
  3. Duhkha : the truth of suffering

The wisdom of thousands of years of experience and practice tells us the mind can only understand these marks of existence through direct, systemic, and careful personal investigation of experience. Being a personal investigation means there is no one right path, there are many paths. A Yogi seeks to understand their own path by following the paths of yoga:

  1. Karma-Yoga : The worker is called the Karma-Yogi.
  2. Raja-Yoga : One who seeks this union through mysticism is called a Raja-Yogi.
  3. Bhakti-Yoga : One who searches this union in love is a Bhakti-Yogi.
  4. Jnana-Yoga : One who seeks this Yoga through philosophy is called the Jnana-Yogi.

Asanas have been developed to aid the practitioner along their path of yoga, Asana being one of the eight limbs of Ashtanga Yoga.

  1. Yama : Universal morality
  2. Niyama : Personal observances
  3. Asanas : Body postures
  4. Pranayama : Breathing exercises, and control of prana
  5. Pratyahara : Control of the senses
  6. Dharana : Concentration and cultivating inner perceptual awareness
  7. Dhyana : Devotion, Meditation on the Divine
  8. Samadhi : Union with the Divine

Asanas are the actual physical exercises that are usually associated with yoga. These powerful poses are designed to give our bodies strength, flexibility, and energy. They also contribute to the deep sense of relaxation that is necessary in order to lovingly meditate on the Absolute.

This series of asanas is for me, a way to bring a deeper story and meaning to my photographs. Connecting with Yogis means connecting with people on a conscious life path of truth while in a graceful connection with their bodies. This is a series of posture, of movement, of capturing an inhale with a still photograph, of creating the space for an exhale.

Each Yogi has their own practice; some Yogis align more with simple postures, while others push their body and balance to its limits. No matter the method, each practice has moments of climax, the pinnacle of release, a moment of pure focus. This Asana Project is to capture those moments of grace.

Book your own photoshoot with photographer Ned Tobin

Book your own photoshoot with photographer Ned Tobin