Yoga Practice is neither about trying
to get rid of something undesirable,
nor attain something desirable.
It is something that can happen
in spite of something undesirable,
or in spite of something desirable.
The more you are able to practice,
the more you feel able to practice.
The less you are able to practice,
the less you feel able to practice.
Amongst other roles Ujjāyī
is a breathing technique that
can facilitate the ability to remain
in the doorway of awareness,
neither going in and introverting, when
tempted by the manoeuvring of the mind,
nor going out and extroverting, when
tempted by the shimmering of the senses.
Yoga practice evolves from an external other cooked restaurant experience
to an internal self cooked home experience via the stages of:
1. Dependence on an outside teacher and external ambient venue.
2. Interdependence where we add the beginnings of a home practice to our outside support.
3. Independence where we have refined the skill to rely on and be primarily nourished by our home practice.
This is Svatantra.
The heart of Yoga is the way in which a profound change is effected on the way we view our environment.
In other words arising out of the various complementary practices of Yoga,
the way we see the world and its processes,
is enriched by a sensitivity to change and understanding of impermanence.
Further, the different practices are not separate compartments,
they are linked through the principles underpinning them.
For example, a meditative attitude in the practice of postures,
complements a stable posture in the practice of seated meditation.
In terms of ageing mainframes and creaking joints,
it is perhaps useful to remind ourselves that
Yoga practice is much more than just Āsana.
In other words, even as the body slows down,
can we continue to slow the Breath down,
can we continue to slow the Mind down,
can we be Still within the distraction of age?
It seems that with ‘Modern Postural Yoga’
the perception of ‘advanced’ practice is based
around physical appearance and artistic performance,
as exemplified by Āsana;
over psychological efforts and cultivation of inner skills,
as exemplified by Prāṇāyāma and Dhyānam.
It increasingly appears that Yoga has been acculturated into the fitness mindset
rather than fitness being acculturated into the Yoga mindset.
In terms of Yoga Practice within adult lifestyles
I feel our priorities need to be based more around
how we practice, rather than what we practice,
unlike children’s lifestyles where the priority is
on what we practice, rather than how we practice.
In its beginning stages it’s about
our practice supporting our life.
In its maturing stages it’s about
our life supporting our practice.
I may not feel ‘better’ after a practice.
I always feel ‘different’ after a practice.
That difference offers new views within old patterns.