Intention: Acceptance, Satya (truthfulness). The famous sculptor, Michelangelo, is credited for saying, "“The sculpture is already complete within the marble block, before I start my work. It is already there, I just have to chisel away the superfluous material.” The same humble insight can be found in our yoga practice. If we are new, we might shy away from a class supposing that we might not be "flexible enough" to be able to keep up in class. If we've been practicing a while, we might feel that we are not able to "get into" certain poses as well as our preconceived idea tells us we should, or our past memories tell us as well as we used to be able to. Both of these scenarios suggest that there is a "right" way to practice, and we may be falling short. The thing is, yoga was not designed for us to "fit in" any poses, it was designed so that we can notice how our body, mind and spirit respond as we practice. Yoga was designed to calm rather than judge. Perhaps we can try a "mind flip" as we practice. Instead of trying to "get into a pose," let the pose "get into you." Receive the sensation in the body, and respond in kind. Let go of the "ideal" we are measuring ourselves against, and notice how our body stretches here, stops there, feels when we "try this way." How is our breath responding? Did our mind veer away from mindfulness in this part? Was there a deep sense of physical release, emotional release, or spiritual connectedness? Let the pose get into you. Let our yoga practice be a journey of self-discovery and simply noticing. When we empower our Inner Witness and Inner Physician, the healing doesn't stop at the mat. The healing begins to permeate our lives, and then our healing leads to others' healing. Yoga was designed to quiet the mind, body and spirit so that we can be led by a Higher Power. Find the beauty of surrender that is already within us. We need only to stop trying so hard.
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