Question: Sir, Why are we putting the right big toe on the left big toe while sitting in vajrasana.. (In Maharishi's exercises)? For any Asana, we have the alternative asana. In maharishi's vajrasana, we are not putting the left big toe on the right big toe. Any specific reason on this from maharishi or from you? Also, we are sitting on the ankle in his version. But in traditional vajrasana we are not. Why these changes he brought in his version?
Answer: When you sit in Vajrasana, Ida and Pingala Nadis are balanced so that Sushumna Nadi is opened up. Ida and Pingala Nadis are located on the left and the right side of the Sushumna. They correspond to the Parasympathetic and Sympathetic nervous system of the physical body.
In the physical body the Parasympathetic system retards or inhibits all autonomic functions and the Sympathetic system stimulates or accelerates. Similarly in the astral body a ida group of nerves has an inhibiting or cooling effect and a Pingala group of nerves has a stimulating or heating effect.
Left hemisphere controls the right side of the body and the right hemisphere controls the left side of the body. Left hemisphere is related to the Sympathetic system and the right hemisphere is related to the Parasympathetic system.
Right big toe is connected to the Sympathetic system and the left big toe is connected to the Parasympathetic system. When you place the right big toe over the left big toe, the stimulation or heat comes to normal. When you place the left big toe over the right big toe, the inhibition or cooling effect comes to normal or warming effect.
It is based on a simple logic that heat or cool is transferred from high to low. This will help to balance the flow of the breath in the left and right nostrils, which are related to ida and Pingala Nadis, and thereby tranquilise the mind.
When cool and heat are balanced, the Sushumna Nadi gets activated. In some tradition, they check the flow of breath through the nostrils. If the air flow through the left nostril is predominant, then they place the left big toe on the top of the right big toe. If the right flow is predominant, they place the right big toe on the top.
It will be a little bit difficult and confusing for common people to check the flow of breath and change the toes whenever they sit in Vajrasana. In this modern age almost everybody is in agitation. So their mind should be calm. On the basis of this assumption, in simplified physical exercise the right big toe is placed over the left big toe.
While practising the traditional version of Vajrasana, you will sit on your heels. It will create pain soon in the ankle joint and feet..And many people will feel uncomfortable. So placing the right toe over the left toe forms a sort of cradle for your buttocks. And you feel comfortable. Then sitting on the ankles is not the purpose. Sitting comfortably is the purpose.
Good morning... Sit in Vajrasana and tranquilize your mind... 💐
Venkatesh - Bangalore
Be blessed with success