Musings

I believe the path of yoga is one of Simplification.

Yoga pushes us to engage in life in a different way, which diverges from the mainstream approach. To do so, we must become both Diligent and Smart. Diligent as in Disciplined, Careful, and Thorough. Smart, as in Assertive, Pragmatic, and Down-to-Earth.

One of the byproducts of a regular yoga practice is Elimination. As yoga grows, we tend to reduce the noise, anything that is non-essential and that we feel out of alignment.

This process touches every aspect of our lives, not just our physical practice. We are shedding our old skin, leaving our old ways behind. Otherwise, there is no room for growth. If we wish to grow, we must let go first.

Let's take our physical practice as a very tangible example of this process. As a beginner, you enter a yoga room with little clue of what you are about to do. Maybe you will be given a cheat sheet to help you memorise, some props to get your body on healthy alignment and extra cueing and attention.

As you become more comfortable with the method, these additional supports are gradually removed. We are taught to tune in and focus so that we can use our body and our resources wisely.

Just like in practice, many students and fellow practitioners have, consciously or unconsciously, applied the same principles to their personal lives. Quitting a job, getting a divorce, or moving somewhere else are everyday events in any yoga community.

The dynamics of the practice of yoga, the ways how it works, give rise to events of this kind.

The reason is simple: some of our older structures do not serve us any longer. Not only we are aware: we are also willing to see and ready to take action.

Maybe the natural ups and downs that come with the practice of yoga, done on a daily fashion, gets us sharper, wiser, and more fit. Not only our bodies are fit, so are our minds and emotions. We become increasingly resilient, more in tune with the rhythms of life, and better prepared to take that leap of faith when the time comes.

This transformation comes at a cost. For instance, there is initial isolation, heartbreak, doubt, and uncertainty. Your old "you" is dying, so a new "you" may come forth. But it hasn't yet. And you are left hanging in there, in limbo, with your questions and your fears.

During these times of turmoil, know in trust that you are headed in the right direction. Allow life to happen; let events unfold. Reduce your inner resistance and embrace what comes your way with Courage, Humbleness and Reverence.

Be Quick. Be Smart. Keep it Simple. And Bring your Fine Ass to Class.

x Carmen