Gomukhasana Holy

To us Westerners, the cow may be less than glamorous. Sure, it may adorn the pot holders, aprons, and cookie jars in our country kitchens, and we may think cows are awfully cute, but we don't take them too seriously. In India, however, the

Ouch!

Don't be frustrated if your hands can't grasp each other. You don't want to pull a muscle! Have the patience of a cow. You'll get there eventually. Cows take their sweet time, and so should you!

cow is the most sacred of animals, worshipped for its giving nature—cream, butter, and dung, which is used as fuel for fire. Appropriately, the cow pose is meant to lead to a feeling of openness and giving. It also stimulates the nerves at the base of your spine, aids in longevity as it keeps your lower vertebrae from calcifying, opens your shoulders and chest, and activates your Saturn and Jupiter chakras (located at the base of your spine and in your pelvic area, respectively), helping to raise kundalini energy. Gomukhasana (pronounced goh-moo-KHA-sah-nah) is composed of go, which means "cow," mukha, which means "mouth" or "face," and of course, asana, which means "posture."

1. Sit with your legs in front of you, then bring one knee on top of the other. Draw your heels toward your body in this cross-legged position.

2. Point one elbow toward the sky, with your palm facing back behind you. Point the other elbow toward the ground, with your palm facing out behind you. Bring your hands toward each other, clasping them if you can.

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