Yoga is that state where you are missing nothing." I love this quote by the famous yogi, Sri Brahmananda Sarasvati. I fell in love with yoga when I was very young, because I really believed in the philosophy behind that quote. When I first read that quote I was 19 years old and it made complete sense to me. I was looking for something other than what was all around me. My consciousness was calling me to something deeper.
We tend to live our lives waiting to fill in the "missing." When things are all lined up perfectly we can let down our guard, open our hearts and truly be present for life.
One of the great joys of practicing a yoga, meditation and wellness lifestyle is to consider how we can grow those light moments...expand our consciousness to something greater and vast.
As life moves forward so many hopes, dreams, trials and transitions shape our lives in ways we can never imagine. While managing our daily lives, and the details each day presents...it can be incredibly challenging to see a larger scope..to vision something bigger than ourselves..that we are spiritual beings having a human experience.
“Without great solitude no serious work is possible.”
– Pablo Picasso
I'm at a point in my life where I love and appreciate lots of quiet time and space. That can mean many things. It can mean saying no to things I really don't want to do, including being around people who wear me down. It can mean sitting quietly after my yoga practice and just zoning out with nothing going on. Or watching my dog nap. Or staring in space. Fear not, I'm not losing it. I just notice that when I'm quiet and still more often, beautiful things happen. Including a more creative and clear flowing mind. Peace in my heart. More love. When there is too much noise, too many commitments, too much talking and too many people it feels tight and cramped. Full. And when it's full there isn't space. There isn't room for anything, let alone creative flow.
Each of us are in charge of creating our own space. No one will knock on the door and say, "Hi...I'm here to help you create space." If this is a problem in your life, relax. Take baby steps. Start with simple and small things that allow you to feel more confident during the process. I find that waking up earlier helps. Get up and get your routine going but take an extra ten minutes just to zone out and sit quietly. Try not to talk to anyone or hear any media noises. No computer or phone would be on the no-no list. How often do you get up and turn your phone on right away? Or computer? Or TV? Try taking a break from that. All of the news will still be there ten minutes or a half hour or hour later.
Expand on what happens once the space starts to open up. Perhaps a little writing or painting or creating something. Each day find a new time for space. Let that grow. Notice what happens when you start doing this. How does it feel? Where do you feel it in your body? As a yoga teacher I appreciate the art of checking in with my somatic state or "body mood." Gently allow yourself to get off autopilot and come into the now. The now of being with what is happening in this moment. Lovely present moment. Breathing in calm, breathing out peace. Then feel the space that was created during that simple action. Those of us who meditate believe that a regular sitting practice helps to open up space. While that is true, I also find that just doing nothing is dreamy. I find that I have regular creative insights when I'm completed unplugged.
Enjoy the experience-
Happy 2014! After the holiday razzle dazzle are you feeling the need for a reset? I spent almost two weeks during holiday season swimming and sunning in Hawaii and other islands in the south pacific. It made me feel buoyant and creative. It was renewing and inspiring. Landing back in Minnesota December 26 and sub zero temps was a shock to my system and my body responded with a nice big head cold. Not motivated to move much lately but gentle yoga felt good. I didn't want to push at anything really.
January always feels like a clean slate to me. I usually have tons of new ideas and things I want to implement. This year is different. I'm going to let it come to me more naturally and see how that goes. I have my goal list but it may have to extend itself a bit longer.
Reading, drinking tea, long walks (weather permitting!) watching old movies, writing and gentle yoga feel just right. I also recently dabbled into baking some pumpkin muffins made with pumpkins from my garden. They turned out pretty good.
Next week will begin my winter teaching session. I love helping students motivate into winter practice. It is the most challenging time of year in our climate. The flowing nature of vinyasa feels perfect for warmth, grounding and toning internally and externally.
OM OM OM
When I am among the trees,
especially the willows and the honey locusts,
equally the beech, the oaks, and the pines,
they give off such hints of gladness.
I would say that they save me, and daily.
I am so distant from the hope of myself
in which I have goodness, and discernment,
and never hurry through the world
but walk slowly, and bow often.
Around me the trees stir in their leaves
and call out, "Stay awhile."
The light flows from their branches.
And they call again, "It's simple, they say,
"and you too have come
into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled
with light, and to shine."