Yoga translates from Sanskrit to “to yoke” or “union”. We are told, in the west, from a young age, to be SOMEBODY; get into the best school, get the best job, make money, buy a big house. Then you will be happy. We cultivate a society in which happiness can only be obtained through attaining. We have to GET happiness. We aren’t whole until we have that, or this.
When does that path end? When do we have enough? When are we whole? Well yoga tells us we are already whole and that happiness is found inside. Not by getting stuff, but by peeling that stuff away. You find some of the happiest people in some of the most impoverished conditions. The Dalai Lama said, “I find hope in the darkest of days and focus in the brightest, I do not judge the Universe”. This is a man who had to flee his own country and watch his people suffer. So how can he be hopeful? What is his yoga?
In my experience, yoga is a personal journey. For some, it is an exercise, uniting the body and breath. For others, it is a spiritual practice, uniting yourself back to the Universe. So my question is, what is yoga to you? What do you feel the need to unite to? What layers can you peel back and discard?
Today, I’d like to unite to my own happiness. Found inside, within my reach. I would like to heal my body through yoga. I would like to peel back other people’s thoughts on my needs and shoulds. I would like to find hope in my dog’s tail wagging, and the sun shining through the windows. Inside myself, on my mat, with my peeps, my dogs, my windows, I will practice yoga.