January 4th, 2017
by Cynthia Pierro
Most of us come to yoga seeking sanctuary. We realize how important it is to briefly step away from the demands of life and relax into a spacious quality of mind that allows us to be with ourselves as we are, without judgment. Insulated from the racket of demands and from the need to rush, we become quiet enough to hear the stirrings of our hearts. And in the act of accepting whatever we find there, we replenish our energy and inspiration. Accepting the truth of our selves, our hearts, our muscles, our level of energy in any given moment is the height of compassion, and practiced this way, yoga becomes an exercise in equanimity.
“The Compassionate Backbend”, Yoga Journal, October 2004, p. 124
What a beautiful awareness, intention and desire for our yoga practices. The tricky part about having this kind of an experience is staying present to the moment we are in regarding our body’s integrity, our emotional water ways, and the activity of our mental circuits on any given day.
Let us consider the guidance from “the Compassionate Backbend” article. First, a reminder of something we all know, that our breath tells us where we are open and where we have more resistance and must pay closer attention. Then if we notice that we are over-efforting, straining, feel pain, anxiety, frustration or over striving a shift is required! Which brings us to “you can make a conscious choice to not take all that you could, not to move deeply into the pose as is possible for your body, because you see the value in holding back; you value the health and integrity of your body more than the glory of a deeper pose…That success comes from taking only what you need from a pose – only what your body can appropriately use and no more.” P 128
Enjoy, stay in the moment and be compassionate to you!