When Yoga Doesn’t Give You What You Want


 

Yoga gets into our cracks, it is a process of unbuilding or destabilizing our known sense of self. All we know, everything that keeps us feeling safe and protected. It’s not what we do, but what is done to us. Of course, we think it’s all about what we can get, what can be achieved to make our life better, make a better version of us.

Unfortunately, yoga is always looking out for our best interests and this is fundamentally growth. Or, opening up from the shutting down we’ve been doing from birth. Concreting ourself into reality by prescribing again and again on the present using past experience.

Hence the record is constantly stuck, broken, repeating ad infinitum. Now we are so bored, but at least we feel secure, and to allay the boredom, instead we aim at working on ourselves and our future to achieve our goals, make progress in our lives.

Yoga seems the perfect add-on to aid us in this journey too. It will work on our inner and outer world. Give us more peace on the inside and a better body and maybe a career in the material sphere. This could work for a while, but yoga gets you in the end; if you commit to it, it wont deny you a vision of yourself in all your falsehoods and misconceptions, its uncompromisingly honest.

It goes to the very root of what holds us back, its been chipping away at the obstacle that’s in our way for years, unbeknown to us, until it starts to finally noticeably crumble. We end up losing everything we know to be true, we never would’ve made this bargain, but to actually be alive in life must mean we can be alive to an impartial experience of the present moment, each moment to moment adds up to a life.

Dwelling in the comfortable stuffy confines of what we know is not tolerated by this discipline for long. What we think we need, where we want to go is an unreal state, a lack of aliveness based on fantasies of our imagination and removes us from a vital connection with our very selves as we move through the world.

What happens is generally pain and disappointment. Dashed ambitions when we realize we’ve reached our limit of physical prowess and are now rapidly progressing to just getting older and stiffer. Or maybe, we were feeling pretty good about ourselves until sudden injury. Yet again, we may have been practicing diligently for the past 20 yrs and still don’t have any peace of mind, still suffering the same old anxieties and depressive states.

At this point, conversely, the yoga actually starts to reveal itself. Its not what we want to be shown really, not the original message we signed up for, but it guides us down the only real path, the path of no path, just an opening up to whatever is, a freshness in the present moment which could feel like free-fall, but could also start to be known as absolute fullness of experience at every turn.

We cant put a price on this return from boredom to a newness in each second. There is no repetition or hopes for the future, whilst we apply the brakes of discipline and soldier on through; pushing, crushing our wills to keep the daily ritual of forcing ourselves onto the mat and through a responsible practice. Its such a relief when we can let this drop and there is finally an experience of yoga in the present which is actually enjoyed. In and of and for itself alone. In all its’ discomfort, misalignment, distraction or disappointment the experience of ourselves as we actually are, instead of the blandness of a never-graspable vision of how we feel we ought to be.

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