Category Archives: Yamas

YOGA IMMERSION

Yesterday was my yoga immersion class and I had doubts about going since it was 60 degrees here in Portland Maine with bright sunshine but I have committed to learning and practicing yoga on and off the mat and considering summer is on the way I’m still committed to these class. I went to Bikram, headed in town to see a little of the St Patrick’s day parade and then headed to my class. There were 2 new women there. I believe they thought they were joining a beginner yoga class but our instructor let them know this was an immersion class and they stayed.  I have been to 4 different classes over the last 4 months and it is different every time with people.  Sometimes I’m by myself sometimes women will show up but I don’t see them again.  The first class a man was there and I see him a lot in the classes throughout the week but not at the immersion class. 

Yesterday we did series of sun salutations very slowly so we could feel every movement.  There is an idea that one must flow quickly through yoga postures to heat up the system and accelerate the heart rate but the truth is that the slower you go the more you feel and the more you can connect to your body, breath and inner voice.  My focus for the next month is to slow down my practice and feel those moves and recognize them.  She also said that when I’m in classes I don’t have to move quickly with the group that most beginners move quickly so if she sees me slowing down my breath and moving through postures she’ll know I’ve found my own way.

We then talked a little bit about the yamas to get the other women up to speed and since our focus this month was judgmental or not being judgmental as it were I thought at the beginning of the month that I was fairly open to all people and situations and didn’t pass judgment since it is not my right to and at the end of the month I still feel that way.  I wouldn’t want someone to pass judgment on me and therefore I’m careful not to pass judgment on others.  This month is not stealing and I think I blogged before that I wouldn’t take something that didn’t belong to me as in theft but do I steal other people’s peace?  Is taking time at work to get on the internet and do something besides work stealing from my company?  These are the types of stealing questions I will work on this month.

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TRUTH

I mentioned in a few blogs back that last month in my Yoga Immersion class we practiced and studied another of the yamas which is Truth.  Many people don’t go around lying in their day but do we really tell the truth all the time?  My month was difficult because I believe I am a very honest person and people can trust what I say and do.  My husband says I’m honest to a fault with one notion in mind, not hurting anyone’s feelings.

Is that really such a bad thing? I don’t want to make it my mission to tell the fullest version of the truth as I know it and hurt people in the process.  As a human, woman, wife, daughter, sister, auntie, friend, co-worker we do and say things that are the correct things to do and say because we are good people.  There are times I would rather not do something and I have to analyze the situation carefully for me and make a decision.

I have decided there are many shades of truth not just black and white versions.  Some of my forms come in beautiful shades of periwinkle, purple, fuchsia and aqua. If I wake up not feeling great but I know that I’m pushing through my day I’m not going to broadcast to everyone that approaches me that I’m stiff, sore, cranky and not exactly feeling myself. They may pick up on that and ask me about it and I try to limit my conversations around that subject based on my audience. This is not lying in my mind even if it isn’t a true black and white truth.

I work in Corporate America dealing with people all day long can I really say what is on my mind, of course not.  I can however, go back to stage one which is flipping the negative thoughts into positive thoughts and I’m still focused on that task and practicing that all the time.  That has actually helped keep me very sane in stressful situations.  The non-judgmental is going just as I thought. I really am not a judgmental person and very opened to all kinds of things and especially new ideas and philosophies.  The truth came down to one simple aspect for me.  Can I sleep at night?  Did I do or say anything during the day that would keep me up worrying about it at night and the answer is no I don’t.

I want to be the best I can be in all the roles I play in my life.  I struggle like everyone and I am challenged all the time but at the end of the day I go to bed, say good-night to my husband and know I am a good person, doing good work, and helping others around me as I can.

Next month is stealing.  Of course I do not take things that do not belong to me EVER. I find the act of stealing so primitive and necessary. I don’t have reason to take anything from anyone.  With that said can I understand why a starving person would steal? Yes and no. I might not like the act but it doesn’t mean I don’t like the person. However, my yoga instructor threw this out there to me “do you ever steal someone’s peace?” That gave me pause and in a few months I hope I have a good answer.