” Yoga is not a philiosophy to be followed with blind faith. In the beginning, it is true that confidence and trust is necessary, but as you continue too practice, every step will bring more and more hope, greater and greater confidence. If we are true Yogis for just one day, we will be transformed and want more of it.”
– The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali , Sri Swami Satchidananda
I know I’m one day late but I’ve been travelling and better late than never! I was in Shanghai yesterday and decided that with it being International Yoga Day, such a day could not be spent in the confines of a hotel. Off to Gongqing Forest Park I go too get my nature fix. Whilst I was exploring the park it got me thinking about what yoga has done for me the past year and what it means for me and seeing as I’m following this yogic path of life I thought it would only be fair to write these thoughts down.
YOGA = UNION
Any yogi worth his or her salt knows the actual translation of Yoga too mean union. But union of what? That’s the beauty of it. Its a whole holistic way of life for me. Its not just “fitness.” Yoga brings about a whole new way of living and thinking. It guides together so many concepts and enables me too live wholly (Is that even a word). Yoga is the union of the Big three: my Mind Body and Soul. Its the union of breath, movement, strength and flexibility. Its the union of lessons I learnt on the mat being applicable to life off of it.
Union in yoga also represents for me all the people I have met along the way on my own personal journey. It’s the teachers you find in every day life when you realise you share something in common and its those conversations that always hold the most substance.
Yoga silences the noise and distractions of every day life and allows you to tune into what is really important : what’s going on inside. I started yoga properly in June last year when my anxiety was worse than ever before. My mind was never quiet and I felt asif It was so fragile I could breakdown any second. I started to realise the only time I’d feel strong and a bit more together was when I was on my mat. When I had those bad days and I felt I just couldn’t hold a thought in my brain; my automatic reply started to form: I Need Yoga.
Ultimately, yoga helps me deal with my mind and anxiety for it grounds me. It stops me getting so bent up about the future and forces me too stay present. After all the future is just a mental fabrication that may or may not happen, so why worry about it right?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m fair from perfect. We all have those days of 1000 thoughts spinning so fast you cant even follow one. These are the days I enjoy my practice most for it brings me such peace, just focusing on my breathing and becoming fully present . I dont leave the mat with the thoughts I brought there. I leave with a still mind, relaxed body and a beaming heart.
Just google “health benefits of yoga” and you’ll come up with 1001 reasons why yoga benefits your body. For me on a personal level I love how in tune I am with my body due to my practice. How many people take the time and can actually say that they know their bodies? I know where my strengths lie and what needs work and I’m dedicated to finding out my little quirks and how I can unlock them. Most of all I’ve learnt too be grateful for my body. It really is a temple and you’d be amaze at the possibilities we all hold within us. I have never felt so strong and able in my life and I still have days when I cant actually believe what my body is able too do.
Finally Yoga has put me in touch with my soul. It makes me realise that I am not my body or my mind. I am something much more bigger. I have finally realised how awesome we are as human beings and that is exactly what we should all do – Just BE. We all possess in each one of us our own dharma. We all have the potential, its only the limits and fear we put on our selves stops us from reaching it.
Most of all yoga has helped my soul FEEL. I can now say I live much more openly than before. I am open to change, to people and to anything that comes my way. I’ve found my heart and now it’s easier too express who and what I really am. This blog for example would never of been made if yoga had not taught me how to accept who I am, how too express and how live without attachment too results. I’m simply here, on my laptop writing my thoughts and feelings because that feels like the right thing too do. It’s that freedom that I love the most.
Ultimately yoga for me is Pure connection. Its a connection I know I have been searching for in all the wrong places. Because yoga is a connection too my true self. Its having faith, trust and living life through that tiny shrine I call my heart located in the temple that is my body. Not worrying or planning any tomorrows, just enjoying TODAY.
NAMASTE and all that Yogi Love ❤