I love this posture because it takes something that comes quite easily to me (touching my knee with my head) and makes it hard. I don’t 100% understand postures that are dedicated to someone. I know I can use the “interwebs” to find out, but I don’t feel like it just now. This posture is dedicated to the Sage Marichi. Marichi is the great-grandfather of Manu (“man, thinking, intelligence”), the Vedic Adam (the period in Indian history during which the Vedas, the oldest scriptures of Hinduism, were composed), and the “father” of humanity. So am I bowing to God? I feel like I’m bowing to God. The literal translation of the Sanscrit word Marichi is “a ray of light”.
Now that we’re done with all that, let’s look at the posture itself. Start sitting on the floor (or your mat, or the grass) with your legs extended out in front of you, heels/toes touching. Pick a side and bend that knee towards you with your foot on the floor as close to your upper thigh as you can get it. Leaning forward slightly, I find it easier to first wrap my arm that corresponds to the bent knee around said leg, getting my chin tucked up and into my armpit. Lovely. Once I have steadied myself, I reach the other arm around my back and get a good grip. With all that in place, and with my bottom leg fully engaged, I start to bend forward, attempting to get my head to touch my knee.
It is a lovely posture that calms the mind while stretching the spine and shoulders. It helps improve digestion by stimulating abdominal organs. It also gives a nice stretch to the hamstring of the extended leg.