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Question and Answer

On Imported Blog

Question (from c):Just wondering from other peoples experiences.... is it good/bad to use yoga as a vice?I think its what I might have been doing last month (though there was also a 30 day challenge going on at the studio) and things were great! I was feeling so good.but I'm taking some time away from the studio this month with work/school/moving and my life seems to be falling apart.

Short answer:We call it a daily practice. It is no more a vice than brushing your teeth. Try not brushing your teeth for a month, and see what happens.

Longer Answer:

This is where the buddhists really seem to have some insight that isn't felt as fully in the yoga community.For the buddhists, the purpose of practice is the relieve the individual, and all beings everywhere of the suffering caused by the neurotic, conditioned mind. That is pretty much the whole deal. there is no promise of a 'yoga butt', no promise of a stronger back, or more flexible hips. It focuses on the fact that we are tortured by our minds, all of us, and the only way out is through consistent practice. The mind can be your best friend or your worst enemy. If you don't take serious time to train it, it will probably be the latter.

Patanjali says something similar too, in Yoga Sutra 1.14

Step 2: Facing Fear

On The Groke's Zen Habits

About a year ago, I began to notice things. Waking up from a very vivid dream, I would wonder at the difference between dreams and reality. I started to see that the world I lived in in my mind was quite subjective. I began to pay attention to my bad habits instead of purposely overlooking or justifying them. I began to desire deep change.

I am writing this now because I want to challenge myself to be more awake and more alive. I wish to stop wasting my precious time on this planet and learn to embrace myself with compassion and strength.

I struggle with procrastination. I waste time because I am afraid - of failure, of not getting what I want, of criticism, and of simply being uncomfortable. I procrastinate because I am terrified of discomfort.

Recently, this root of fear is easily exposed - at the subconscious drop of a hat, my stomach is in knots, my heart is racing, my hands tremble. It's very physical. In those moments, I may have no conscious idea why I feel these physical symptoms, but I feel that something below the surface is crying out to me, "I'm afraid! Let's run - let's go hide in a safe place." I notice that I could be sitting at my workstation and attempting a simple task, and suddenly like this I begin to feel very nervous and ill.

I want to learn to say to myself, "you are safe. Nothing can truly harm you. Take the sweet and the bitter in equal measure and with gratitude. Don't avert your eyes - look carefully at this fear, name it, befriend it. Embrace it tenderly. Take care of it. It doesn't know any better."

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