Our yoga practice: Here and now
Our mat is our universe and our supportive energy. Our practice on it reflects how we act and treat ourselves outside of it.
The idea is to do all the struggles there, so life outside can be peaceful. The thing is because we tend to press ourselves in our jobs and in life we might forget the first step of yoga and what yoga really means when we step onto our mat.
Why do we practice yoga?
In my last post I talked about being a beginner. When we start to dedicate ourselves to a daily practice, we might forget the joy of our first sun salutation and calmness of our mind. Remember where you started from.
Our mind has a tendency to either live in the past our in the future not that much here and now. It maybe sounds harsh but our mind is doing everything to keep us from our inner truth.
Important though is to understand that we never can force our mind to be present, when it´s ready to be still it will. In the Indian philosophy they compare the mind to a tiger. “If you try to tame it too fast it will kill you…” I don´t believe we can accomplish anything with force or negativity. I think all solutions lies in kindness and love even towards your own flaws.
So when you step into your mat either sit or lie down and focus internally. Scan your body and see where you are at today. This is crucial to how you will do your practice. Observe if the breath is shallow or deep. How is the body? Relaxed, energetic, tired? Finally is the mind present or are there clouds blocking? From where ever you are, you do our practice. Be aware if your mind is full of judgment and unsettled. You focus on the breath, keep a steady even soft breath through out the entire practice. If the breath is shallow you may be held back a little in postures so you still can keep a soft but slightly shorter breath then these usual days.
If the body is aching and tensed, nurture it, treat it with love and be soft.
Okay so what can happen when we think we are listening to our body, breath and mind? We can be fooled. Yes and it´s of course our mind that also wants to have control and stay in its comfort zone. The idea is to gently without pushing or moving to a breaking point open up, bodily, emotionally and mentally.
Wise or sophisticated student…
My great teacher Maty Ezraty says… “The sign of a sophisticated student is not in big poses. Not the one balancing in the centre of the room or who does all the crazy poses. A sign of a sophisticated student is the one who knows what to do to take care of him/herself. When you know what you need to create a harmony, to be relaxed and peaceful in your yoga practice. That’s the sign of a sophisticated student. The advance crazy poses don’t necessarily means sophistication often there is a lot of chaos and craziness there. It´s not impressive! It´s much more impressive to get a prop/block go to the wall and practice in a way that’s yogic not in a way that is chaotic.” So everybody be wise!
Our here and now state
So next time you step into your mat be present be a wise student. It does not matter what you were able to do yesterday or your aim for tomorrow. Every practice will be your first you will always be a beginner.