It’s been about six months, and I have been experiencing a string of injuries and ongoing physical pain in my body, my yoga practice and in my daily life. Consisting of a hamstring injury, a low back injury, knee pain, and continual discomfort on the entire left side of my body, and you know what?!?! It SUCKS!!!!
Using yoga as a method to explore my body (and my life), I have continued my daily practice. It is through this practice that I have begun to do the seemingly impossible!!!! I am actually beginning to feel genuine gratitude for my injuries! That’s right, gratitude!!!
Yoga is a practice of Self-discovery, a practice of presence, a practice of accepting your Self for who you are in each moment, flaws and all. Teachers and practitioners alike will confirm, emotional pains and blockages can and DO manifest themselves physically (usually as pain or excessive tension) in our bodies, and the practice of yoga brings these up to the surface for us to experience and hopefully one day release. And this physical pain is giving me a beautiful opportunity to explore and release some of those blockages!
After all, it is only when the light shines on a dark room that we are finally able to see the room’s shadows.
Practicing Ashtanga Yoga gives students a unique experience – a ‘constant’ in our daily lives. By practicing the same poses day in and day out, we are able to actually feel and experience the subtle and sometimes dramatic changes in our body that happen day-to-day. This provides students with an opportunity to cultivate a sense of objectivity and non-attachment to these daily changes allowing us to clearly see the areas where we have the opportunity to evolve and grow. And that’s what it’s all about.
And so, I keep practicing. Every day. Opening myself up and accepting the challenges presented to me. Acknowledging the times when I close my heart off. Accepting that even though I practice the same poses each day, they’re not going to feel the same every day. This is why I practice. It is this objectivity, this path of Self-discovery that makes yoga what it is.
Ideally, our yoga practice would feel like a dream everyday but it doesn’t… The trick is to keep practicing. Some days it might just be Sun Salutations but keep practicing. The only way to continue along our path of Self-discovery through yoga is to continue it.