Yoga has taught me many things. Despite just the physical benefits of a regular practice. Yoga has a way of making you work on yourself, on the inside. Getting through the ups and downs of life, the mat can be our greatest teacher. Each pose or asana gives you the opportunity to grow and challenge yourself. As in life, each day gives us challenges or opportunities to grow. However the secret that yoga teaches us, is to be content in the moment. In the stillness, when pain and frustration creep in, can we come to our breath and find peace, maybe even happiness? One of my favorite poses in yoga is called Virabhadrasana 2 or warrior pose. It is a deep right angle bend in your front knee, arms lengthen straight out and you have a steady gaze beyond your fingers. There have been times in my early yoga practice where my teacher had me hold it so long that I thought I was going to die. I wasn't in my power, in my breath, I was resisting the lesson and in turn my body wanted to fidget. I was so eager to get out of the pose that I was missing the lesson and making the pose harder than it was, as in life. Surrender is power. Once I surrendered, came into my breath, and even smiled while doing it, everything shifted. Happiness doesn't come from overcoming difficulty, finding happiness in the moment of difficulty vanishes chaos completely. Yoga teaches us that having a positive perception no matter the challenge creates ease, stability, focus and power. Yoga takes us to the present moment, the only place where life exists.
* “Samskara saksat karanat purvajati jnanam. Through sustained focus and meditation on our patterns, habits, and conditioning, we gain knowledge and understanding of our past and how we can change the patterns that aren’t serving us to live more freely and fully.” ~ Yoga Sutra III.18