The Tantric Roots of Surya Namaskār – Realization and Practice
with Christopher Tompkins & Shiva Rea

Course Overview

The Tantric Roots of Surya Namaskār – Realization and Practice

Featuring the *First Translations* ever presented on Sūrya Namaskāra Sequencing, from source texts, 7th- 16th centuries, A.D.
“Next one should lower to the earth through the postures natural to a dog, prostrating in the shape of a staff (danda-vat);
Then one arises from the earth in an ecstatic state after making an offering to the mūrti (symbol of the divine).”
– Naradiya Tantra, ca. 12th century
For the first time in modernity, students will experience the original Namaskāra practice as taught in unpublished Tantras.
Originally inspired by the dance tradition of ancient India, the Namaskara Vinyasa evolved into an embodied devotional ritual of daily transformation which honored the cycles of death into re-birth, of moving from darkness into the light of Shiva consciousness. Students will experience a deeper source of namaskaram which later becomes the roots of the original twelve-part sequence of Surya Namaskara. You will learn how devotion and mantra were engaged as the heart of this embodied meditation and explore this in your own practice.
Students will be experience 5 ritual practices which create a devotional space for embodied realization and then experience the “Tantric SuryaNamaskaram” as it relates to the devotion to Shiva, Shakti and Vaishnava bhakti practice. Chris will provide the translation and background and Shiva will offer the ritual namaaskaram recorded in the Tantras, inspired by practitioners enthralled with the expression of Shakti arising in their own body. From this experiential dive into the origins of Tantric Namaskar, we will learn how many of these ‘Danda’ poses evolved into poses known today.
Experience 5 sessions ~
  • Each session features a 75 minute darshana (study) session with Christopher, based on his Sanskrit translations from Tantric Source texts
  • A 20 minute movement meditation sadhana based upon the practices revealed in each session with Shiva Rea, global vinyasa teacher who has been dedicated to the revival of namaskar and prostration practice within yoga
  • Body Puja – Ritual Form of Namaskaram Practice
  • Shiva Namaskaram from the Kriyasara (ca. 14th century, Shaiva Tantric work);
  • Astanga Pranama Vidhi’ or ‘8 part prostration’ sequence taught in the Pancha Ratra Raksha (14th century, Vishnu Tantric work),
  • Bala Shakti Namaskara Sequence from the ‘Ritual Manual of (Kashmir) Goddess Bālā’ (ca. 15th century, Kashmir)
  • Tantric Pranayama Practice with Namaskaram
Begins Sunday March 13th – practice posted by 9:00 a.m. pst every Sunday for five weeks.
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