How your Yoga practice can support you
Now, perhaps more than ever before, your Yoga practice has the potential to support you, to strengthen you, and to nurture you. But it won’t happen just by thinking about it!
It’s become almost a cliché that we’re living in times of “unprecedented” uncertainty and upheaval. Many of the things we took for granted as part of everyday life are now on a very shaky footing, and it’s unlikely to get much better in the near future.
At times of great uncertainty, the mind is very strongly drawn out of the present; it longs for past security, and gets increasingly fearful of what the future may bring. The thing is, we can’t recreate the past no matter how hard we try; equally, we can’t predict the future or what it will bring. And so the tendency to dwell in the past or the future creates a feedback loop of doubt, anxiety, helplessness, and stress from which it seems we can’t escape.
But there is a way out! One of the greatest and most powerful aspects of Yoga is its ability to bring us into the present, into the here-and-now. To just be with our body and breath; to let go of the outer world and embrace the inner; to come back to what is, rather than what was or what may be. And that sense of inner presence is incredibly empowering at a time when so much seems beyond our control.
We can discover strength we never knew we had; we can learn to be kind to ourselves and pull back from overly stressful situations; we can learn to control, not our outer circumstances, but our response to them. We can learn, or perhaps more correctly remember, that the outer world has ALWAYS been beyond our control, but the world within our hearts was, is, and always will be ours to determine. And we can find the place in between effort and ease, strength and softness, in which we connect directly to the sense of Being, to awareness without involvement, to the Self, to Consciousness, to the Divine within, or whatever name you want to give it.
We can rediscover the absolute changelessness of our fundamental nature. That which has always been, and will always be, through every single moment of every day. So amidst the chaos of the current world, you can remain firmly grounded, steady, and anchored to the one true constant; the sense of simply being; in each and every moment, I Am.
If you just want a Yoga “experience”, then by all means practice in a studio with panoramic views, a fancy fitout, and your favourite tunes playing; you will, in all likelihood, have a lovely time.
So come along, roll out your mat, and rediscover your changeless, ever-present Self. Don’t just make shapes with your body; come and practice Yoga.