In his book Light on Life, the great master of hatha yoga B. K. S Iyengar explains why Savasana, corpse pose, can be considered as the most difficult pose. As we lie on our flat on our backs after our asana practice, tired and content, sometimes half asleep, we may wonder what is supposed to be so difficult !
Iyengar writes :
« Savasana is about shedding, in the same way that […] the snake [sloughs] off its skin to emerge glossy and resplendent in its new colors. We have many skins, sheaths, thoughts, prejudices, preconceptions, ideas, memories, and projects for the future. Savasana is a shedding of all these skins, to see how glossy and gorgeous, serene and aware is the beautiful rainbow-colored snake who lies within. We even lie on the ground as a snake does, with the maximum possible surface of our bodies in contact with the earth.
To relax is to cut tension. To cut tension is to cut the threads that bind us to identity. To lose identity is to find out who we are not, [as] a scalpel [cuts] away the unreal to leave only the truth. As you are lying on the earth in Savasana, do you not, when the posture is harmonious and balanced, feel both present and formless ? When you feel present yet formless, do you not feel an absence of specific identity ? You are there, but who is there ? No one. Only present awareness without movement and time is there. »