Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Roots of American Yoga in The Bhagavad Gita

a new sacred text recently discovered by Jarrod Shanahan

SANJAYA: On year’s first beach day at the Rockaway
Did Arjuna gaze out in despair.
Arrayed before him glistening in the sun
The men and women, gathered on the shore
Stood scantly clad, their outfits did reveal
Abdominals, and buns so statuesque
And biceps plump and lats so well defined;
The perfect beach bods for this hallowed day.
And gazing down at his own form he wept
As winter's turbid days had left him soft.
His underwhelming arms could not conceal
An ample gut which winter’s cold had spawned.
His buns were nothing in the way of steel,
His calves suggested ripened apples not,
His chest was supple as with mothers milk.
Bereft, and sick of heart, he did cry out:

ARJUNA: Krishna! Like that which brings me to the shore,
Now heat does burn me deep inside as shame!
For oozing from my swimsuit, Lord, my gut
Descends not in the manner of a V
Into my bathing trunkswhich burst and swell,
But do it not with my virility!
Oh Krishna, how, I beg thee, dare I show
Myself before those gathered, in this state?
No volleyballs will I be tossed to play,
No Missed Connection will be left for me.
Pray, show me how my soul may shed this form,
How my manifold can be folded back,
So to command the eye of righteous babes,
And by men have sand kicked into my face not.

KRISHNA: Arjuna, thou are rightfully ashamed!
O Prince, how hath this weakness taken thee?
Thy soul requireth not to be reborn
So to appear embodied as a whale!
Thy oneness with the world’s without dispute
Thou leavest no room for anything else!
When thou sitteth around in devotion
Thou really sitteth around in devotion!
Thy warrior-name! Cast off thy cowish-fat,
To show thy muscles to the gathered babes.  

ARJUNA: Oh Krishna pray tell me how I may cut
A figure like that of our venerable
Shirtless Brad Pitt in Fight Club, or at least
Ed Norton in American History X.

KRISHNA: O Prince observe and I will show
    The sacred way the Yogi works
    On biceps, glutes, and abs alike
    In bless’d devotion to himself.
    The path you’ll walk reveals itself
    To all with purity of soul,
     With equanimity of mind,
    And with a valid credit card.

ARJUNA: Oh holy day! My grief is gone! For soon
I will be getting crazy laid, and more,
My guns will be the envy of all men
Down at the blessed beach of Rockaway.

SANJAYA: Furnished then with a hallowed shopping list
Arjuna set out to the marketplace.
There he did find a slip resistant mat,
With matching sling to carry on his back.
And straps and blocks and sweatbands and canteen,
And special yoga pants he did procure.
T-shirts advertising ones devotion,
Come free along with purchases this size.
There would be no doubt in those who saw him
The owner of these products was devout.
Krishna was delighted with Arjuna,
And even offered him a special deal:
Unlimited wisdom for thirty days,
Not to be combined with other Groupons.

KRISHNA: Behold Arjuna, now I will reveal
Sacred ancient postures of the Yogi.
And to accompany thy lesson, Prince,
I offer up the sacred songs of Bjork.
Begin by holding thyself as the plank,
Push up against the ground and then release,
Downward, and then push thyself up once more.
Behold, The Yogi Push Up, praise its name.
Now, Prince, roll over resting on thy back,
With hands behind thy head and feet held up.
And kick, bringing elbows to meet thy knees
Rejoice, for now thou may Bicycle Crunch.
Prepare to sweat, for soon we’ll heat the room
Like he who cuts weight for the wrestling team.
But pause first, Prince, so that we may reflect,
Upon this poignant Oprah Winfrey quote:
“Anyone will ride in thy limousine,
But true friends will wait with thee for the bus.”
And now, Prince, chant along with me
That sacred word adorning thy tote bag.

SANJAYA: And on that bless’d day Krishna did reveal
The Rockstar, Dead Bug, and Awkward Airplane,
The Hamstring Stretch, and other sacred names,
Arjuna’s lips would ever speak in bliss.
Forevermore the beach would know the man
Whose abs did ripple, numbering in six,
Who, it was said, could fit without a fight
Into his denim pants of High School days.
Whose buns, it was said, could be called upon,
For when a nutcracker could not be found.
Whose many deeds were known amongst the men,
For those of you who pick up what I mean.
And whose arms displayed such definition
No soul would ever wonder “Who’s the man?”
So Arjuna found the way to hotness
And Tranquility, not so much.