Before Georg Feuerstein (yoga historian/scholar) died in 2012, he made a comment that “Yoga is a mess”. There is Beer Yoga (?????), Goat Yoga (animals are not to be exploited – step one to yoga), Yoga for this and that (all yoga is for healing) – it has become diluted and , in some instances, inappropriate. The lack of knowledge about yoga and it’s origins, has created an environment in which this profound and comprehensive discipline has been dismantled. It some instances, its a practiced piecemeal.
Yoga is transformative. We discover new ways of understanding the world and new pathways for living in it. It’s a multi-dimensional approach: Offering techniques that address body, mind, and energy.
Through meditation and it’s contemplative practices, the physical movement of Yoga (Hatha Yoga – and yes this includes ‘vinyasa’),it dives deep to awaken deeper levels of awareness.
- Troublesome thoughts
- Swirling feelings
- Habitual patterns
- Dis-ease of the body
- Our “labels”
In the end, yoga supplies a vision of truth that transcends everyday consciousness. From Hatha yoga we (if guided properly) will choose a more aggressive yoga path like Raja Yoga, Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga or Jnana Yoga (more on these in another post – but here is some information on Raja and Jnana)
Through one of the paths of yoga, we can transform not only ourselves, but also the look and feel of the worlds around us.
INTROSEPCTIVE SELF CARE
We practice this every time as a way to recognize, accept, address and react to the problems that disturb us (stresses).
- Habits that are off-center jar us and cause us to feel disconnected form ourselves and others.
- Acceptance means setting and idealized self aside in favor of a truer nature of our identity.
- We might acknowledge chronic overspending and unnecessary needs
To do this – we sit with the painfulness of the behaviors. Despite its discomfort, a deep serenity, from a shift in perceptive, starts to loosen our grip on that which is binding us. We come back to our true nature, our center.
Mediation (Raja Yoga) is a pivotal element of this process. During the pre-mediation work, we might encounter voices of imbalance within us and begin the task of transforming them.
- RESTING the body
- CALMING the breath
- WITNESSING today’s version of the life story passing through the mind.
In short, it provides the healing energy that change requires.
In the end, hatha yoga will endure because its rooted in healing and transcendental vision. Every heart longs to know the Infinite, to transcend individual limitations, and to heal life’s suffering. Yoga arises out of these longings. Because of that, nothing really needs to be added or done to enhance its appeal – just need to seek the right teacher.