It’s been a tradition in some yoga circles to practice 108 Sun Salutations, often times to signify something special like kicking off the start of a new year, letting go of the old one or celebrating the solstice. Whether you’ve got blisters on your toes from 108 Salutes or are just curious, here are a few fun facts and interesting reasons why 108 has significance.
Significance of 108:
- 108 beads on a mala. The number holds significance (as does 9: 8+1=9) in the Hindu tradition.
- Sanskrit alphabet: There are 54 letters in the Sanskrit alphabet. Each has masculine and feminine, shiva and shakti. 54 times 2 is 108.
- Time: Some say there are 108 feelings, with 36 related to the past, 36 related to the present, and 36 related to the future.
- Astrology: There are 12 constellations, and 9 arc segments called namshas or chandrakalas. 9 times 12 equals 108. Chandra is moon, and kalas are the divisions within a whole.
- Planets and Houses: In astrology, there are 12 houses and 9 planets. 12 times 9 equals 108.
- Sun and Earth: The diameter of the sun is 108 times the diameter of the Earth.
- Moon and Earth: The average distance of the Moon from the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the Moon.
Also, a few more little known facts:
- 108 seconds is the time it takes for a yogi to scan the room and decide who the ‘hotties’ are.
- Yogis should wash their mats after 108 uses, at least. ew.
- It takes 108 tries to even start to understand the mechanics of bakasana.