What is Yoga?
What is yoga?
For me yoga is living life in a complete state of acceptance, consciousness and presence. Allowing completely all that is happening without judgement, and with absolute acceptance, not wasting one single precious moment of your life wishing you were somewhere else, someone else, had something else - that leads to living in a world that is a fantasy, full of dreams and mental projections., the only moment that exists and when we can come completely into the present moment; then we are really living, positively aligned with life at the quantum level, that level of infinite possibilities, where anything is possible. In this place we have great influence on how life unfolds around us, as opposed to living life in a reactive, judgemental state.
We use Asana (body postures), breath work and meditation to stretch, strengthen and focus ourselves. The aim of postures is not get a “yoga butt” or your head to your knee or achieve some incredibly visually impressive pose. Yoga is about creating space in the body, balancing and opening the areas that may have become stuck, tight and closed off or dull though our habitual patterns of reaction. It is about bringing in prana, life-force, energy, nourishment and flushing toxins. It does not matter how close your head is to your knee, it is about circulating energy in a relaxed, non-judgemental but engaged state, with the free flow of breath, this is doing yoga….It does not matter how old or in what state of health you are, you can do yoga. It will positively influence your body, mind and soul. Keeping our body strong, balanced and flexible enables us to remove any distractions that stop us coming to know ourselves.
We use Meditation to strengthen and focus our mind, our will. All too often these days we become a slave to our mind, to our repetitive thought patterns. We wrongly believe we are our mind, we are our thoughts, but this is not true, our mind is a tool for our soul to use, as is our body. We first need to become aware of the mental and emotional patterns that are at work in our life, then we can begin to address them, weakening their hold and allowing us more choice in the way we move through life, in a more conscious, deliberate manner. Just as with our body we strengthen the way we think, the way we react, every time we exercise that reaction, until it becomes our default. Yoga gives us an opportunity to create space around these reactions, a tiny window where can observe our reactions and choose if this is the way we want to go, or at the very least watch ourselves reacting. There is great benefit even in this, the watching, as it again weakens our identification to the reaction and lessens it’s hold.
Yoga is a life long journey, the is no end pose of goal, only peace and acceptance in your life, living fully in this moment.
We use Pranayama (breathing techniques) to oxygenate and remove toxins from the body, to energize and invigorate or slow and cool down. Our breath is the most powerful tool we have at our disposal to quickly and positively influence the state or our mind.
These practices lead us naturally to higher states of yoga, of connection, self awareness, non judgement, acceptance and universal love.
Yoga provides us with the perfect tool for reducing the effects of stress in our busy, modern lives. In yoga we deliberately place ourselves in stressful postures so we can begin to see clearly our reaction to this. It is a time of reflection with distractions to take us outside. Once we become aware of our patterns we can then work to lessen their grip. So we can move consciously into the present moment, accepting fully what is, with no judgement or reaction, no wish to be anywhere else, leading us into peace, no matter what maybe happening around us.
Sat nam and namaste
Megan (Meherbani Kaur) xoxo