Paripurna Matsyendrasana (Complete Lord of the Fishes Pose) registers as 38* on BKS Iyengar’s 60* scale of difficulty in Light on Yoga.
Paripurna Matsyendrasana bears many similarities to Ardha Matsyendrasana III. The main difference between these two yoga poses is in the placement of the back hand. In Ardha Matsyendrasana III, the back hand rests against the back. In Paripurna Matsyendrasana, the pose goes one step further: the hand clasps the foot in half lotus.
As mentioned in my previous post, my challenges with Ardha Matsyendrasana III are great enough that I’m not able to take Paripurna Matsyendrasana fully. And, since the steps to reach either yoga pose are quite similar, I’m turning my attention today to a beautiful quote about Paripruna Matsyendrasana from Light on Yoga. BKS Iyengar explains that the breath in the right nostril is considered hot and is called the sun breath, or Pingala, and the breath in the left nostril is considered cool and is called the moon breath, or Ida…
The moon travelling in Ida sprinkles its nectar through the entire system and the sun travelling through Pingala dries out the whole system, for the human body is regarded as a miniature universe. It is said that the moon is located at the root of the palate, ever dropping cool ambrosial nectar that is wasted by feeding the gastric fire. Matsyendrasana prevents this.
“The human body is regarded as a miniature universe.” How beautiful. Whether or not you can do Paripurna Matsyendrasana, appreciate the galaxies of sensation that reside within the celestial vessel that is your body. Enjoy.