“Yoga is a light, which once lit, will never dim.
The better your practice, the brighter your flame.”
~ B.K.S. Iyengar
Good morning friends, and happy Monday. Spring is definitely in the air, this still hazy morning. Apparently we have a plume of Saharan dust that’s made it’s way across the Atlantic early this year. Which, along with the cool winter and el nino conditions predicted, bode very well for our upcoming hurricane season!
So, have you enjoyed our series on the Yogic Code of Ethics? Debra Adele summarizes how working with the first two limbs of yoga can contribute to our wellbeing:
Perfection of each Yama (or Restraint) brings:
Ahimsa: Nonviolence ~ An aura of peace that protects self and other
Satya: Truth ~ Spoken words will always come true
Asteya: Nonstealing ~ Abundance
Brahmacharya: Non excess ~ Great vitality
Aparigraha: Nonpossessiveness ~ Knowledge of experience
Perfection of each Niyama (or Observance) brings:
Soucha: Purity ~ Clarity
Santosha: Contentment ~ Joy
Tapas: Self-Discipline ~ Refinement
Svadyaya: Self-Study ~ Freedom
Ishvara Pranidhana: Surrender ~ Harmony
And yet, with all of these wonderful qualities of mind that the practice of yoga can bring, there are those demanding that it be kept out of schools.
Through this series, you’ve probably picked up that the philosophy of yoga (kriya or noble yoga) is a bit broader than the simple physical practice of yoga (hatha yoga or asana practice). In the larger body, Kriya, there is a practical method by which one may experience God directly. Yoga literally means “to yoke” or “to be one with God”. After many years of inquiry, I do believe Yoga to be above Religious views. God can be known and experienced directly by all walks of faith.
But on a practical sense, Debra Adele writes: “The Yamas & Niyamas are the foundation for studying our own perception and for boosting our confidence as we deal with the day-to-day challenges and joys of our collective and singular humanity.”
Ann Maxwell reminds us that it is the daily choices that we must pay attention to …
“It’s relatively easy to be kind, compassionate, open, & expansive sitting on the safety of my yoga mat.
I can be deeply in love here. I can offer my practice as a prayer here.
But the question remains, will I choose love once I step off this mat?
The true test of love comes in the moment to moment ordinariness of life.
Will I remain open, without fear, as I walk back to my car in the dark?
Will I find compassion in the face of judgment, both yours and mine?
Will I keep the love connection with my breath when I am running behind?
Will I choose faith when my loved ones are in need?
Will I be kind with house chores? Interruptions?
These are the moments that our choices of fear or of love are most challenging and crucial.”
And with that, it’s time to take my yoga off my mat, and off my screen into the world. You too?
As a befitting ending to her book on the subject, Debra Adele provides a comparison chart between Eastern and Western thinking.