THE OBSERVATION GAME
Last night I finally went rock climbing! I almost can’t believe it, after so many years of just talking about it I did it. There is a wonderful place right here in Crystal Lake. Anyhow what I found interesting is the similarity to yoga: You are moving in a fluid way smarter and not harder. You can’t think too far ahead but instead you must be present to just what is in front of you in order to make the wisest next move of hand or foot, you can’t get “mad” at your options you just have to work with them managing your mental energy and remaining positive.
This is why yoga works. It helps us practice being. Scoop Nisker writes, “We habitually try to analyze and adjust our environment, as thought it were never quite right. Meditation practice is the antidote to our fears and worries, a way to allow ourselves to be in the world as it is.” You see there is no need to rearrange the outside stuff instead we should focus on the inner world of our thoughts, slowing down and observing ourselves before we take that next move. This helps us step outside ourselves in order to get some distance on our own little dramas. This process helps us understand the personas we wear as the masks that they are. Yoga helps us evolve from seeing ourselves in the third person to the first person.
Well on my climbing adventure this observation game works on two levels: you can learn tons from watching others move up the climb and if you stay calm and clear headed you can actually watch yourself as you are taking the actions to move. Each move reminds you to stay really present to your heart. As Chade Meng says, “A life-time is not what's between, The moments of birth and death. A life-time is one moment, Between my two little breaths. The present, the here, the now, That's all the life I get, I live each moment in full, In kindness, in peace, without regret.”
I hope with all my heart that this practice of yoga helps us all to be more present to the miracle of living life one moment at a time and as we watch ourselves we see how happy we are. I leave you with these words from Dhammavadaka “Remember always that you are just a visitor here, a traveler passing through. Your stay is but short and the moment of your departure unknown. Speak quietly and kindly nurture love within you and strive to be a friend to all. Treasure silence when you find it, and while being mindful of your duties, set time aside, to be alone with yourself. Cast off pretense and self-deception and see yourself as you really are. Your essential Mind is pure. Therefore, when defilements cause you to stumble and fall, let not remorse nor dark foreboding cast you down. Be of good cheer and with this understanding, summon strength and walk on.”
Love to you, Silvia
EXPLORING LIFE ON THE MAT COME RAIN OR SHINE
OCTOBER 26, 2009: “Exploring life through movement and stillness brings us to our true center!” Once you make a commitment to yourself this yoga practice keeps us coming back no matter what: rain or shine. Quite frankly since its been raining so much why not go inside and practice more yoga? There must be a reason why the universe wants us to go inwards. As Martin Buber says, All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.
So as much as you do the actions of the poses think of yourself as much a witness of life as you are a participant. This great journey of life gives us the opportunity to see from both views. If you think of the practice as taking a photo, we look through the lens and see the details we might not otherwise see. Through that we hopefully become re-inspired!
I was at a Kundalini Workshop with Moses last weekend and he said of the 8,000 kriyas only one is approved to practice at home by oneself. The rest, the other 7,999 are meant to be performed within the love of group practice. As much as I love home practice every day gosh nothing replaces coming together into a community of yogis and I take classes 6 days per week. I love it! In the group you experience what Elise Larimer says “I am re-annointed into the diversity and similarity of humanity. Inspired through these interactions to the planet on all levels, I am refreshed and replenished.”
I always hope you feel that the Kula keeps you safe to explore your own adventure and yet the alchemy of being with others also sparks new adventures we haven’t yet thought of by ourselves. This connection works on so many levels! And truthfully if you make friends with someone in class and you know they are going to show up no matter what, it inspires you to show up too. We have this unwritten contract with one another as students when we attend regular classes. We promise to keep the dialogue of our hearts open to one another and somehow no matter what, say to ourselves “I am going on this adventure again today, my friends are waiting for me, come rain or shine.” So please know I will always be here holding your spot waiting for you to show up and be your most radiant self. So until I see you on the mat breath and smile! Love your day, Silvia
It’s better to have traveled and gotten lost than to never have traveled at all.” -George Santayana
It’s better to have traveled and gotten lost than to never have traveled at all.”