Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Yoga or Cross Fit?

One of the amazing things about the internet is that you can share your opinion on any subject with thousands (or more) people all over the world.  Anyone who has access to the web, can write just about whatever they want.  Just about anyone has a chance to be heard.  Pretty amazing.

I see alot of stuff pop up about what people don't like, or what they think other people are doing wrong...why they hate yoga, what's wrong with parents in this country, why you shouldn't be a vegan...the list goes on.

It's cool - freedom of speech, right?  It's empowering & sharing opinions is interesting.  We are a diverse people - it makes life interesting, for sure.  And a really opinionated blog or post gets people fired up, it gets attention, it's exciting.

It gets people talking & blogging & posting more...it's gets people thinking.  And then people begin to take sides.  "I'm right - you're wrong".  We become divided & separated from each other.

Diversity is wonderful - thank goodness for all if it.  Different opinions & contrast make for an interesting life.  But beneath the superficial differences, we're the same.  We are all energy & light & yes, love.  We are all just trying to do our best, in different ways.

Can you voice your opinion without being divisive?  I think you can.  I love yoga!  I love the style of yoga I teach.  Does that mean everyone needs to practice my style of yoga?  Does that mean if you're not practicing my style of yoga I'm better than you?  Of course not!  I like to think that I'm practicing something that helps me be a better person & maybe can help me make this world a better place. Don't we all want that?  Does it matter if it's yoga, or going to church, or doing cross fit?

What if we spent more time trying to find ways to identity what we have in common.  What if we spent more time trying to find common ground, ways to unify.  It may not attract as much attention, but that's my yoga off my mat.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Itchy & Scratchy Show

The other night, as I was teaching class in my studio, I had an itch on my arm & scratched it.  No big deal.  No big deal, that is, until I noticed that it continued to itch...and itch.  And in the spot where I had scratched, hives developed.

Still not a big deal.  And then the other arm started to itch.  And about 15 minutes into a hot & sweaty (awesome!) 75 minute class, both arms were itchy & I had hives.

It was distracting.  The class was hot & sweaty & so was I .  And the hotter & sweatier I got, the more I itched.  It was very distracting.  I wasn't sure why I was itchy...thinking about it was distracting.  Thinking about what had caused the reaction...also distracting.  Thinking about NOT scratching...still distracting. 

All I wanted to do was leave the room (not an option).  Or scratch like crazy.  Also not an option.

So I kept on teaching.  The itching persisted.  Around the 45 minute mark  I remembered that I had carried a big box up the stairs when I came in.  I couldn't imagine what was on the box that would make me itch & break out in hives (the possibilities are endless & all pretty icky to think about).  Still, knowing what had probably caused it was a bit of a relief.  I managed to refrain from scratching.

The itching didn't stop & I kept on teaching.  At some point, the hives & the itch stopped being distracting.  Not being able to do anything about it stopped being distracting.  There was an itch.  It wasn't going away.  I wasn't going to scratch it.  I was just going to hang out with the sensation & keep doing what I was doing.

We all get the itch, in one form or another.  The urge to do something!  To react, to move, to speak.  In class, the itch can be the urge to get out of that uncomfortable pose, instead of hanging out with the uncomfortable sensation.  In life, the itch can be the urge, the need, to say something to fill an awkward silence.  To make a quick change as a knee-jerk reaction to something that isn't quite right in your life.  Not scratching, not speaking, not reacting, not trying to change someone or something...just being present with what is.  That's my yoga.  Still in the studio, but off my mat.