Week of 2/16-2/23/2020 Intention: Balance.
We are continuing our theme for the month of February which is "Be My (Own) Valentine." We are learning simple, inexpensive ways to nurture ourselves throughout the month. This week's focus is not maintaining balance in a fixed posture, but maintaining balance while we are in motion. Why? Because it is impossible to physically move forward without a limb leaving the earth, even if it's for a brief amount of time. When we can physically practice transitioning from one secure pose to another, the brain reads the moment of imbalance as stress. Then stress is followed by the gratification of again finding our security in balance...or rather, perceived balance. We are actually always in motion as long as we are breathing and our heart is beating. Nonetheless, by briefly stressing the brain and regaining security, we are teaching he brain that we do not have to panic every time we are stressed. We are building up resilience and stamina in response to stress both physically and mentally. (Here is a link to an article from Harvard Medical giving more details https://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/yoga-for-anxiety-and-depression ) There is also the spiritual aspect of losing balance, or "letting go and letting God." In yoga practice, on our mats, we are trusting our bodies, gravity, and intuition to guide us to the next posture after briefly experiencing imbalance. We can apply this trust also to our Divine Teacher, and learn to be more comfortable with being "in between" by trusting that we are being led on our journeys to our Divine Purpose, or dharma. It can feel uneasy, messy, and uncertain when our minds tell us that we are not being led, but are "losing control." By meditation, prayer, and consistent yoga practice we can learn to be more comfortable with being vulnerable by surrendering ourselves to God over and over again. When we let go, we cannot always see where we are going to land, but we can learn to have faith that we will grow from each experience and person to which we are led. We are "balancing forward" in unstable equilibrium.