The Journey Continues……
As I mentioned previously, I am a nurse. A large part of nursing is educating patients on how they can improve their quality of life, either while in the hospital or after leaving it. Although my yoga practice was often inconsistent, my use of pranayama techniques with many of my patients proved to be life changing. A memory that always touches my heart is of a patient that had chronic COPD, to the point that anxiety would cause him to have pseudo-seizures. By helping him to focus on his breath during stressful episodes, he was able to stop the seizures. Whenever he sees me, he refers to me as the nurse who taught him how to breathe. Our culture is so reliant on their health being fixed by Health care Providers and medication that we have lost touch with the ability to cure ourselves. By not listening to what our bodies may be trying to tell us, we are ignoring our inherent wisdom. I am in the process of learning this myself through my yoga practice. Some days are much more challenging than others.
During one of my trainings my teacher was talking about class attendance and reasons students may stop coming to Yoga class, even after coming for a long time. She stated to not take it personal…that often the student was on the precipice of attaining a deeper level of understanding or consciousness of their reactions. This can be disconcerting for the average human that functions within the parameter of denial and disassociation in regard to struggles or difficulty in life….BINGO!!! A light bulb went off. I was pretty sure that this was the reason I was habitually inconsistent with my yoga practice. I wouldn’t have to talk, I could be a little introspective..(but not too much). The only problem is that when you devote time to practicing the asana’s, meditation and breath work, the communication between your mind and your body will continually develop and improve. You will be required to look square in the face, the very things that continue to hold you back from experiencing this life with the joy that was intended. This can be very painful. We have all developed protections that keep us from feeling hurt and vulnerable. Many of these protections surface in the form of unconscious reactions to either people or situations in our environment. I invite you to do something different the next time you have feelings of anxiety, anger, judgement, or anything that negatively impacts you. Lovingly observe that reaction. Ask yourself these questions. Is this reaction relevant? Does it serve this situation in a positive manner? Does it allow me to go forward with an open heart? Where is it coming from? Allow yourself to feel whatever comes up, take some time to write about it or talk to someone you trust.
In contrast to being human and having a spiritual experience, I prefer to believe I am a spiritual being having a human experience. And this my friends takes conscientious work, support and community. I am so very grateful to travel this road with this supportive community of yogi’s