Beautiful Ripple Yoga Community Namaste from Pondicherry, India.
I have arrived in Pondicherry and Friday begin the exploration and leveling of self that is yoga. For after all, this is the true nature of yoga, to discover self. If we peel the layers of awareness we as we discover them, we find that we explore the physical first, then the conscious mental, the subconscious mental and finally the awareness of our own awareness, which is referred to as cosmic consciousness.
Yoga cannot be achieved with the 3 R’s, and they are not reading, writing and arithmetic!!! We are talking about Repetition, Rhythm, Regularity. Sometimes we make excuses to ourselves as to why we cannot practice, telling ourselves that other external factors in our life are more important. Ask yourself with honesty, what is more important than your own personal growth and awareness? If indeed you were to commit to expanding your own personal growth and awareness, wouldn’t this then improve the external factors that were “preventing” you from practice in the first place? Apply the principals of Repetition, Rhythm and Regularity and soar!!!
Each week you will have the opportunity to read and absorb a practical lesson from me that can be utilized and incorporated into your practice. Sometimes these lessons will be very mental in nature and it may seem to you that it has nothing to do with your tight shoulders or hamstrings!! Take heart, by reading and taking these lessons seriously, and incorporating them into your practice, you are agreeing to either step on or continue your yogic path!!
Today’s lesson is a brief synopsis of the first and second sutras from the Yoga Sutras by Patanjali, the basis of the Raja System of Ashtanga Yoga, what I am studying here in India. These two sutras are the what and why of yoga. In short, what it is and why we practice, and the foundation for the remaining 190+ sutras. Sutras are simply short thoughts, and the translation means “strings”.
Yoga Sutra One: Atha Yoganusasanam – Now the exposition (instruction) of yoga is being made. This means that the practice of yoga is based on instruction and not mere words and philosophy. Without practice, nothing can be achieved. As the student, we must always take action, and that action is the practice.
Yoga Sutra Two: Yogas Citta Vrtti Nirodhah – The restraint and modifications of the mind stuff is Yoga. If you are keen in study, this sutra explains yoga as the rest of the sutras go on to expound upon this one. If we can restrain the mind of mental modifications, then the goal of yoga is reached. Our practice, in its many forms, is what allows us to achieve this.
I ask that you ponder these thoughts as you continue with your practice. They have very deep and effective meaning to any one that is truthfully seeking an actively self-aware life. As you apply these thoughts in your practice and in your life, continue to soar – you inspire by the actions that you take!!
I will leave you with this thought – Mana eva manusyanam karanam bandha moksayoh. This means “As the mind, so the person; bondage or liberation are in your own mind.”