Virabhadra’s Pose is also known as the Warrior Pose.
It may seem strange to name a yoga pose after a warrior; after all, aren’t yogis known for their non-violent ways? But remember that one of the most revered of all the yoga texts, the Bhagavad-Gita, is the dialog between two famous and feared warriors, Krishna and Arjuna, set on a battlefield between two great armies spoiling for a fight.
What’s really being commemorated in this pose’s name, and held up as an ideal for all practitioners, is the “spiritual warrior,” who bravely does battle with the universal enemy, self-ignorance (avidya), the ultimate source of all our suffering.
Stretches the chest and lungs, shoulders and neck, belly, groins (psoas)
Strengthens the shoulders and arms, and the muscles of the back
Strengthens and stretches the thighs, calves, and ankles
From Dysautonomia International: “Dysautonomia can cause a long list of symptoms and complications in almost any organ and system in the body because the autonomic nervous system, which is impaired in dysautonomia patients, controls essential bodily functions like our heart rate, digestion, and blood pressure regulation. We couldn’t possibly fit all of the problems that can occur as a result of dysautonomia in one infographic, but this image depicts some of the more common problems associated with dysautonomia.
October is #DysautonomiaAwarenessMonth! #MakeNoiseForTurquoise
The characterization of Aphrodite in the Saint Seiya Universe
This is a translation of a post originally submitted on May 23, 2015, in Brazilian Portuguese.
Thank you so much, Arukas. You’re the best!! ♥ ♥ ♥
After his recent spectacular participation in Soul of Gold, I found myself thinking about how the character was dealt with in the various works he was present, and I decided to draw a parallel between them, because I see that many people don’t realize (or understand) the always present essence of the character.
Initially, Aphrodite was created by Masami Kurumada as a warrior who is fearless, proud, and very concerned about peace on Earth. After seeing in Saga the strength required to keep that peace, he decided not to follow Athena – until then a weak and unknown girl to the Gold Saints. He does not hesitate before an enemy threat and since then he proves himself a powerful opponent at direct and indirect battle, being able to knock Pegasus Seiya unconscious without laying a single finger on him. Moreover, Aphrodite shows an enormous inflexibility in the face of Shun’s arguments, not giving in at any moment nor hesitating about his ideals of justice. He would die for what he believed to be right and made it clear since his first appearance in the series.
“Strength is justice, and the winner is the absolute sovereign”.*
“Peace has been among us thanks to Pope Ares”.*
Remember that even in the encyclopedia his concern for peace is exalted.
The second work he appeared in was Episode G, in a less prominent role, but that followed the same line of fighting as the one seen before. Aphrodite faces and easily defeats a Giga, while protecting and healing Aiolia, showing the same distinguished, imposing and proud posture that we saw in front of Andromeda Shun, in the virtual future of this saga. And once again he shows himself as extremely inflexible before the enemy, having a goal ahead of him and nothing is capable of divert him from his path until he achieves it.
“My side is and always will be the same. I will always be on the side of the most beautiful justice, for beauty is the only absolute justice, incapable of betraying us”.*
(Notice that, in this saga, he uses euphemisms to talk about strength. And here we can also see an extension of his techniques with roses, in which he is able to create huge vines and control them freely).
Later he is inserted in the chronology through Saintia Sho. Here we get to know more about his personality rather than his strength. We’re given a great and enlightening dialogue between him and Saori Kido, in which all his position is explained and justified. Once more, the reason of his actions is thesearch for peace and for protection of those who are weaker.
“One needs to win to protect”.*
“As a Saint who protects the Earth, to swear loyalty to an unreliable stranger would be the same as betraying the people of this world…And this is something I cannot do at all”.*
Aphrodite was aware the Earth was at risk of being invaded by other divine entities, such as Hades and Poseidon, and in the face of an unexperienced and weak girl, he preferred to follow Saga until she proved being able to defend those who needed protection. She understands that attitude herself, and admits it is reasonable to expect that from someone at his position.
His participation in the Legend of Sanctuary movie doesn’t take a minute, but we can see in his lines that he was at Athena’s side this time. He believed she was in the Sanctuary and went after the Pope to take her to a safe place.
(This is the only film in the series that I will mention, since the others don’t make any sense to be analyzed and used as any kind of foundation for the characters).
At last, we have Aphrodite resurrecting along with his comrades in the current Soul of Gold saga. Insightful, intelligent and distinguished, noble: that’s how he was shown so far. His first thought upon arriving at unknown territory, unaware of why he was revived, was to investigate the enemy directly in order to know the reasons for them to be there and for all the adverse situations the Gold Saints were facing. In this saga, he displays a skill unknown up to then: Aphrodite can communicate with plants, and by using such skill, he gets to the God Warrior Fafner. His posture was the same he had in all his serious combats so far: Inflexible and determined to reach his goal. Aphrodite extracted from Fafner all the information he needed, and immediately passed them on to Mu. There was no hesitation, fear or doubt when confronted by all the adversities he met: he had a goal and would achieve it by any means.
In this scene, he shows again his concern about the well-being of people above everything else, telling Fafner that he could not forgive him for the suffering he caused to Asgard’s inhabitants. Before being imprisoned, we see that – somehow – he passed through Andreas, released Helena and got her out of the place, sacrificing himself in the process.
After minimally analyzing each of his participations, I can conclude that Aphrodite is and always has been characterized in the same way. In some sagas there were euphemisms in his words, while in others he was more brutal and even violent, but in the end, he always had the same characteristics when fighting seriously: Strong, fearless, imposing and extremely focused on his goal. The fact that he prizes for peace and the common good is also present in all Saint Seiya works, and is even highlighted in all of them, either with words or attitudes of his. This is Pisces Aphrodite, created and worked on through several works, but whose essence was maintained in all of them: the tireless search for peace and justice.
*translator’s note: Unfortunately I couldn’t find the episode nor the scans in English so those are translations of the lines as seen in the Brazilian dub/version.
Life requires a warrior’s posture. Some warriors will choose to conquer others. The wisest warriors will choose to conquer themselves, thus transforming the world according to the inner light of their being. These wisest of people wash the feet of others and give comfort to the suffering. Compassion is the greatest weapon in their arsenal. To serve is to lead. They give life so that others may rise and have more of it. This is the way that of life taught by the great Galilean master. He phrased it in this way, “There is no greater love than this, to lay down your life for friends.” Messianic consciousness is that of a spiritual warrior – a human being – so possessed of love that in his death will lead to the becoming of others – the becoming that reshapes the world.
Sergeant Tybalt of the newly formed Ultramarines Chapter watched as the burning Fortress Monastery of the Night Lords lit up the bleak, perpetual night of Tsagualsa. He knew he should be feeling elated. A great victory for his Legion…no, that wasn’t right…for his chapter had been won today.
Instead, a deep sensation of melancholy had set in for the veteran as he stared at the Thunderhawks and Land Speeders of his chapter, alongside those of its successors, dart around the burning pyre, hunting for any surviving Night Lords with thorough, codex approved search patterns. Overhead, the twisted wrecks of Night Lords vessels became fiery comets as they cut into the thick atmosphere of the planet. 8th Legion ships that had been old has the Heresy itself had been outmaneuvered, outflanked and blasted to pieces by a swarm of Loyalist vessels factory fresh from the shipyards of Ultramar.
He was old. Older than many of his brethren on this battlefield. He had lived through the nightmare that was the Heresy. He was spared the horror of Calth but nonetheless found himself fighting the Word Bearers in the Nothern reaches os the Ultima Segmentum under the command of Chapter Master Arceus. His perfect memory made it easy for him to relive the entire range of emotions he felt during those grueling years of bitter warfare. The shock and anguish of the betrayal, the single-minded hatred that kept him going through the countless battles he fought, the wash of elation and relief as the Traitors were eventually pushed back. It all came back to him, and for a brief moment he closed his eyes, allowing himself to be lost in his thoughts. This was the last traitor stronghold left in the Imperium.This was the culmination of his efforts.
A sharp crack of bolter fire broke him out of his reverie, his centuries-old combat reflexes causing him to snap up his plasma pistol at the source of the sound. He lowered it and let out a low breath as he saw an Ultramarine standing over the corpse of a fallen Night Lord, two enormous craters in the traitor’s chest where the bolts had punched through.
“Animalistic filth!” the Ultramarine hissed from beneath his helmet. Although his expression was hidden beneath his helmet, Tybalt could feel the utter hatred and contempt radiating from his brother’s posture.
The marine noticed Tybalt staring at him and immediately stood at attention, his bolter held up to his chest. “Brother Cadeus. 5th Company, 2nd Squad. I deeply apologize for the negligent discharge Sergeant” the warrior said in a surprisingly youthful voice. “I fully submit to whatever penance you would have me-”
The old warrior waved away his apology with the motion of his hand. “Forget it, lad” he said in a tired voice. “Just remember to save your bolt rounds for live targets next time”. He turned away and took in the view again.
“Yes sir!’ Cadeus replied, still standing at attention. After a lengthy, uncomfortable silence the young warrior eased his posture and began to speak again. “Don’t you hate them too, sir? These feral bastards?” the venom in his voice was obvious this time.
Tybalt raised an eyebrow at this but did not turn around. “You do?”
The younger marine was silent for a few more moments. “It’s just that…I’ve seen the picts of what they did to the citizens of Sotha…what they did to many other defenseless men, women and children in the 500 worlds. I heard you served under the Hero Arceus in the subjugation of the Nostramo sector. Surely you’ve borne witness to many of their vile atrocities as well?”
For the first time in nearly a century, Tybalt felt a smile play across his lips. It was not one of genuine joy, but one held by a man who had realized the sad truth behind a twisted joke. “Aye, I did lad” the veteran said “I took part in the Battle of Desperation where they hung the dried skin of Imperial citizens from every power line in the Hive City”.
Cadeus recoiled slightly but pressed on. “Then how do you not hate them more than I do?”
Tybalt closed his eyes once more. “Because…when you’ve fought them as long as I have, you recognize a fundamental truth about the Night Lords” he said “….that you’ll never hate them as much as they hate themselves”.
October is Dysautonomia awareness month. Dysautonomia is a umbrella term dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system. The Autonomic Nervous System controls the “automatic” functions of the body that we do not consciously think about, such as heart rate, blood pressure, digestion, dilation and constriction of the pupils of the eye, kidney function, and temperature control. Dysautonomia is not rare. Over 70 million people worldwide live with various forms of dysautonomia.
I have a form of Dysautonomia called Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome. POTS can cause lightheadness, fainting, tachycardia, chest pains, shortness of breath, GI upset, shaking, exercise intolerance, temperature sensitivity and more. While POTS predominantly impacts young women who look healthy on the outside, researchers compare the disability seen in POTS to the disability seen in conditions like COPD and congestive heart failure.