I’m not convinced my yoga is better than your yoga because I am not in your body or your life or your circumstances or family constellation. I do not know where you come from or what makes you tick. I do not know what your body “needs”.
If the yoga industry wants to thrive again, it needs to start teaching more than fitness. Fortunately, we don’t have to reinvent the wheel- all the techniques already exist within yoga’s traditions to offer a class that touches every part of our being. By offering more integrated classes that include pranayama, mantra, meditation and kriya, we can now provide a yoga experience, instead of just yoga poses.
Just as each feature of cosmic order has an essential nature, cosmic order itself has an essential nature. Bringing ourselves into harmony with the essential nature of cosmic order is the way by which we can live peacefully in the world. Conversely, dissonant action relative the essential nature of cosmic order brings about chaos and destruction.
I started attending classes because I had reached a place in my studies where I needed personal feedback about the experiences I was having. I took group classes for about one year before being approached to teach. I was completely ignorant of the culture of yoga building in the West and its historical context in the East. I was only interested in the practice as a psychology… as a way of spotting and shifting patterns of thought and behavior.
Throughout 2023 at Embodied Philosophy, one of our editorial and research themes will be connected to this question: “What is the future of the yoga teacher”? This is at once a practical, professional and philosophical question.
Yet materialism, which has dominated our intellectual culture since the Victorian age, covers fewer and fewer bases of life in the twenty-first century. The natural sciences are increasingly defined by quantum data, interdimensional formulas, and fields like neuroplasticity, which uses brain scans to demonstrate the capacity of thought to alter neural matter. Our ordinary reference points of life are in greater flux today than at any time since Darwinism upended what it meant to be human in the Victorian era.
In recent years, having flung myself headlong from the consumption bus to see what would happen, I’ve picked up some neat life hacks along the way.
You don’t have to build a house from mud or raise chickens to be more of a creator. Here’s some very simple methods I’ve distilled that anyone can apply to practice clean living and contentment.
Suddenly, I realized that my friend didn’t actually want advice or solutions at that moment. My friend just wanted to feel like someone had their back and was on their side and that I was listening. In other words, my friend wanted me to sit and listen to their experience of discomfort and suffering with compassion.
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