Saturday, February 2, 2008
To Breathe Or Not to Breathe
I offer my inhalation up to the controlling force of my exhalation,
(deep, smooth exhalation)
I offer my exhalation up to the controlling force of my inhalation.
This is our essence...our breath... our innate connection to our true self. And yet this is the furthest thing from our minds these days. Our heads are being consumed. Consumed by more things that can make you go faster...Consumed by more things that can give you more time (to spend doing what?)...Fast cars, fast food, fast cash and even what seems to be, fast Yoga.
I'm not sure who said this but I heard a quote once that said, "Yoga without intention or breath is mere gymnastics." Admittedly I find myself distracted in class but somehow I manage to re-connect.
Recently I was reading another Blog that was talking about the "Yoga Olympics". Where is the intention there? (And put on by, non other than Bikram, a well established Yoga Association). (I stay responsive and not reactive) What a trivialization of Yoga!! To be put on display and be judged for something that IS about lack of judgment. What happened to "The person is not meant to conform to the pose but the pose to the person." This whole Yoga competition thing just seems a little elitist!!
"Oh sorry Jeff, you're not the best Yogi because your back leg was a little bent in your first Virabhadrasana I...and your Savasana wasn't quite...still enough."
I walk around my class sometimes and think that this persons pose doesn't look like the cover of the Yoga Journal or how I think the pose should be. Then I remember when I started (and not long ago), how awkward, I'm sure, I looked in Triangle for the first 50 times. And the great thing was that my teachers all told me that Yoga is not just the poses. These poses are a tool to be used on the journey...not signify the journey!!
These poses are here to teach us about ourself and about life and about the universe...What does the Yoga Olympics teach us.
So I sit and I breath. And I know that sometimes this is what Yoga is. Sometimes when I read the Baghavad Gita or the Yoga Sutras, this is what Yoga is. When I walk in the park with Adele and we catch each others glance, hear each others breath and feel how in love we are...this is Yoga. When I hug my Mom, Dad, Sister (and the little bundle in her belly), Brother, my niece (Emma) and my nephew (Zachery) and feel completely supported...this is Yoga. Oh and I can hold Sirsasana for 20 breaths now...That shit is definitely Yoga!! HA!!