“... everyone who comes into contact with a child is a teacher who incessantly describes the world to him, until the moment when the child is capable of perceiving the world as it is described. According to Don Juan, we have no memory of that portentous moment, simply because none of us could possibly have had any point of reference to compare it to anything else. From that moment on, however, the child is a member. He knows the description of the world; and his membership becomes full fledged, I suppose, when he is capable of making all the proper perceptual interpretations which, by conforming to that description, validate it ...”
Carlos Castaneda

Journey to Ixtlan

It’s not Yoga, It’s You

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A Yoga pracitioner who recently resumed practicing wrote to me that “[Yoga] has had a wonderful impact on my body and mind”. I feel that the credit in this sentence is misplaced.

Yoga is essentially a “guide for better living” based on an assumption that existence is a meeting of Spirit & Matter (as described in Samkhya philosophy). It is a rich set of tools and techniques that can be used to play the magical instrument that we are. Yoga has no self-inherent existence or value. It comes to life only as an individual and intimate personal experience in practice.

We live busy and demanding lives – interacting with so many people in so many ways with so many self-reflections coming back at us that we become super-self-conscious. Something gets lost amongst a mirage of self-consciousness – to the point that we lose sight of it. Then, when we are gifted with a graceful Yoga practice – the busy-ness settles – sometimes long enough to enable something else to shine forth.

It isn’t Yoga that has a wonderful impact – Yoga has no “is-ness” that can make any impact. It is your interpretation and application of yoga – your practice that has a wonderful impact. Even that isn’t quite right … what you’ve “impacted” is disturbances that got in the way.

This isn’t about self-congratulation or taking credit – it is about clear perception and the responsibility that comes with that.

It is you that comes to Yoga – sometimes disturbed, sometimes peaceful.
It is you that practices Yoga – sometimes distracted, sometimes present.
It is you that walks out of Yoga – sometimes sweet, sometimes bitter.
It is you untangling knots you created.
It is you that are wonderful.
It is you that gets lost and found and lost and found …

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  • By World of War | iamronen on July 27, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    […] view a practice can be worthless and even damaging. Yoga isn’t good or bad – it is what you bring to it and make of it. This is why Yoga is best served by a teacher – if all you put into it is yourself, all that […]

  • By Yoga Will Not Deliver | iamronen on January 13, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    […] Unmet expectations will suck your well of motivation dry – leaving you with good reason to avoid practice. Unmet expectations is your own personal baggage – it is you that brings it to the practice and it is you that walks away not wanting to practice. […]

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