And now, Yoga….

Atha yoga-anushasanam, Patanjali Yoga Sutra I.1

Yoga is to me like the Sun is to the earth each day. The Sun rises, spreads light and warmth, and its rays of activation help to activate my own existence. Yoga does this for me also. As I rise each morning, I smile. I consider my breath, my vital pulses, and the activities that will create a fruitful, joyous day – for myself and for others. I define my clarity thru personal affirmation.

This is Yoga to me. To Yoke, Yoga, the union of opposites with myself, and this World around me. Yoga – the merging of the Sun and the Moon, the melding of Truth, as it exists, always.

Yoga is so much more than my asana practice on the mat. For me, the real yoga begins when I step off of the mat, and move out into the World. The mat is the metaphor – and when I step onto it, whether for just 10” or maybe for a longer more delicious practice; it becomes the “Practice.” Practice is just that…how can I work towards defining my life, my actions, my reactions to proceeding from the Present moment with grace and ease, and respect for myself.

Then when I step out into the World for the day, I use those practices to remind me. I can come back to the fuller breath and the clarity this brings when I enter stressful situations. I can come back to feeling my feet finding mindful ground as I work to staying conscious in the tedium as well as the greater joys that the day can bring. I come back to how I feel fully integrated after a stronger practice followed by a deep Savasana relaxation when I have to exert more of myself in my work life. I come back to how good I feel eating a healthy meal conscious of breath and each bite I take; when I feel rushed to grab a quick lunch break in my work world. When I feel cravings in the afternoon, knowing that it would be better to take a short yoga nidra and to hydrate.   I am more fully in my Yoga, when I do indeed schedule these in.

Yoga for me, is a lifestyle choice, a joy to know that although I can veer away at times, it’s always there waiting for my return. Every moment is an opportunity, and those opportunities are the gateways to just “being.” When I can step back and observe myself, my thoughts, my actions; these are the gifts. Yoga teaches me that my ability to stay present is also my ability to look more deeply at what drives me and what holds me back. This is from where my most profound changes have emerged. Habits can change, adapt and grow into healthy patterns with the observance learned from Yoga. And Now, Yoga…

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