People often come to yoga to find something—peace, love, happiness, strength, flexibility, you name it.
Yes, we may find all of those things in our yoga practice. But we can find all of those things anywhere else. Peace walking through nature, love with our family and friends, happiness while engaged in our favorite hobby, strength and flexibility at the gym. Yoga doesn’t hold a monopoly over those things.
If in your yoga practice you search for anything, for whatever, you will always be missing the point of a yoga practice and will always be unsatisfied in your practice.
Once you have gained crazy flexibility, then what?
What if you never reach our idea of an acceptable level of flexibility? What happens to your practice?
Instead, you could touch a deeper level of your practice. You could cultivate a sense of deep satisfaction in your practice that will in turn give you keys to cultivating deep satisfaction in your life off the mat.
Aside from the obvious benefits of an asana practice, yoga is above all an exercise in listening, in observing, in gathering information.
It’s a thermometer, a barometer, a weather report.
An asana practice is about observing what IS and not looking for anything other than what it is.
It asks us to deeply accept this “what IS."
Doing yoga poses isn’t really about doing yoga poses. That, I think you know.
It’s more like, “What if I shape my body into this form? What happens? Who am I now? What do I observe here?” Then we change positions, put our shape our bodies into yet another form and ask the same questions. “What about now? Who I am now? What am I observing here?”
Yoga is not about trying to fix anything. It’s not about changing what you don't like about yourself. It’s not about getting better at anything (expect maybe fine-tuning our observational skills). It’s not about creating anything, any feeling, any point of view.
It is simply observing and accepting, observing and accepting, observing and accepting.
Then, maybe after all of this accepting, maybe a decision to effect change follows. Maybe. Or maybe not.
Deep satisfaction comes with seeing what IS and integrating that reality and saying “Yes, this is life."
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