Tuesday, November 5, 2013
I have a friend who's mother is a schizophrenic. She told me her mother literally hears voices in her head & they tell her what to do.
Her mother has been this way for a long time. She's tried medication, which quieted the voices, but she didn't like the way the medication made her feel & the silence made her mother uncomfortable.
What struck me about this, is that we all hear voices.
Undoubtedly schizophrenia is a much more serious condition to deal with, and I'm not trying to minimize that in any way. I greatly respect both my friend & her mother for dealing so gracefully with this situation.
Most of us have voices telling us what to do. What not to do. Telling is that we aren't good enough. Or smart enough. Or pretty enough. Voices talking us into & out of things every day. Voices reminding us of what someone said last week or last year & how it made us feel.
It's disconcerting. It's distracting. It's unbalancing.
Yoga & meditation offer a way to learn to quiet those voices. It takes practice & it takes getting used to. Because much like my friend's mother, the silence that comes with quieting the voices makes many us uncomfortable.
Sivasana is the final pose of any yoga practice. You lie still & quiet. For many, it can be the most challenging pose of the entire practice. There's nothing to look at, nothing you need to do. And the suggestion that you quiet the voices & empty your mind of thoughts leaves many people feeling uncomfortable.
But with time & practice & patience, if you can find that quiet, you can find your center. You can find your balance. You can find some space for yourself. That quiet becomes comforting. And it becomes something that you carry with you off your mat.