I got myself all into a proverbial flap over the weekend after trying to write a coherent piece on the value of asanas, one that only now I will try to untangle.
The thing is I get very overexcited about language, I get so overexcited in fact that the words can spill out and by the time I’ve finished what I’m writing, the writing itself has become so convoluted that I have a hard time reminding myself what it was I was trying to say. Point in fact.
So, I was all set to write an interesting piece on the value of āsanas and ended up confusing myself utterly in the process. I identified the ultimate meaning of yoga as being one’s relationship with relationships and having reached this aha! Moment in my mind, had to rewind and try to remember how I’d got there. So then I gave up, which is why I’ve never dared go that far as a writer.
Anyway, NOW dear reader, I have finally remembered what it was I was getting at with this cryptic definition of yoga.
Yoga is my relationship with relationships. I have reached this understanding because I know in my heart of hearts that my relationship to yoga is the most important relationship in my life. Gasp, shock horror, sorry kids and family. But its not as heartless as it sounds. In fact, without yoga I would not be able to relate to my loved ones in the way that I do. I am so grateful to my practice for being the one that keeps me attuned, present, alive and loving. I am grateful to my yoga for granting me gratitude, compassion, joy, sukha. My relationship with yoga, that practice to which I return time and time again defines my relationship with all other areas of my life. It is my relationship to relationships.
I think this question; what is yoga to you? Is of so much value. It is not a selfish musing, a navel-gazing preoccupation with your inner dancing fairies, it is not indulgence or escapism, in fact it is the complete opposite. It is harnessing your inner resources, looking at the phenomena that are presented to you in your daily life straight in the eye and engaging wholeheartedly in the relationship with your ‘life’, the moment-to-moment electricity of it.
Asana is your way in, for what more intimate relationship than that with your own body? Let the ‘work’ that you do on the mat, to call it something, teach you something about that which you encounter off the mat.
There is an excitement to progressing further in an asana, be it through slowing down to take the time to really feel the recruitment of all your various synapses, or be it through finally taking that leap into a handstand. Is it not the same in your day to day?
But also, there are difficulties, challenges; the days where you realize you will never get into that shape, where your mind has been distracted by gibberish throughout or when you keep getting interrupted in meditation. What are you doing all this for anyway?
I don’t know, I just wanted to ask that question.