Losing control

woman mat copyIt was one of those magical practices when the yoga happens and all you can do is let it. Let the breath come in and go out, let my limbs find their shape in each asana, let my body feel where to go — bodily sensations only, no brain involved. The teacher’s words resolved themselves in my movements. For once my brain offered no alternative mental commentary through its questioning and analysing. No conscious choices in my practice. No control of my practice.

But wait, I loooove being in control. “I control, therefore I am”!

What happened?

Well, I was feeling so sick, I wonder that I got myself to class at all. I might easily have stayed in bed, but I hoped some yoga would help. I wanted to be in the yoga room. I wanted to hear my teacher’s words. I wanted to be around yogis, to hear their breath and feel their quiet focus.

But beyond that I didn’t want anything. I didn’t want anything for my own practice.

On hearing that I wasn’t feeling well my teacher advised just to breathe. The sort of reductionist advice that used to perplex me, annoy me even. But slowly, slowly it’s starting to make ‘real’ sense. There’s a weird six month time lag between him speaking and me really hearing.

419004_278531088882771_145993968803151_624722_2137765489_nI came to this practice with the heartfelt (not head-felt) intention to be honest and I was at peace with the fact that this might mean my practice was lying down breathing and nothing more. As it turned out I rested when I needed to but mostly the practice just took care of itself. Sure there was effort: I moved, I sweated, I lost my breath and had to find it again. But I was in my body, not in my head. This effort arose from the fulfilling of physical impetus rather than thoughts about how I wanted my practice to go. When you expect little, everything else is a delicious bonus.

I am filled with gratitude. Gratitude for yoga, for my teacher’s care and acceptance, my fellow yogis for showing up for their practice. I am also grateful that my practice, this daily diligence and discipline, has brought me to the point where I can start to ease myself into some bigger picture, the picture where it’s not all about me and what I want.

There’s a practice of surrender that is more profound than any practice of effort.

And this feels very strange.

image source:
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_oy8zyIh6aEM/S7dxX-M58VI/AAAAAAAAAWg/NhGFd-_FLqc/woman+mat+copy.jpg.
https://yogametaphysics.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/419004_278531088882771_145993968803151_624722_2137765489_n.jpg.

3 thoughts on “Losing control

Add yours

  1. You are so courageous to get out and on your mat when feeling unwell! Certainly that was the “effort” that balanced out your experience of “surrender”… : )

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Website Built with WordPress.com.

Up ↑

My Meadow Report

the juice is in the journey

Mimm Patterson

Yoga, Coaching & Craft

Not All Big Girls Drink Wine

tales of love, sobriety, growth... and everything in between

A YOGA MINDSET

becoming a centenarian

yogajivan

a life worth living

Josephine Corcoran

blog, notebook, images

Random Musings

A little bit of this, and a little piece of that!

Anthony Wilson

Lifesaving Poems

Lasta

For whatever lights you up.

Beginner's Mind

Introduction to mindfulness, based in Huddersfield

mettatsunami

Tales from the inner and outer world

Views from the Podium

A Blog. A Book. A Yoga Community.

Peregrine's Progress

Books, Cinema, Food, Photography, Theatre and Travel

Brooklyn Mellows

Coffee, Kirtan, Comics, Counterculture

Radical Yoga

with Colin Hall

The everyday vegetarian UK

Recipes, reviews and musings of a vegetarian in meat fuelled world

musingnude

prose and poetry

%d bloggers like this: