Yoga is a lifestyle
Yoga has been in my life for years now. I've been practicing daily, became a yoga teacher, and only now has it clicked. Yoga is more than the time we spend on the mat. The goal of every school of yoga from Ashtanga to Zen is freedom. Freedom from the ego, freedom from suffering, and the freedom from the stories we tell ourselves.
I didn't realise when I stepped onto my yogic path just what I was connecting too. When you step on the mat you are not only there for the physical practice even if that's what you think. The physical practice of Yoga - Asana - has this wonderful ability to draw us in. By us, I mean the overworked, highly stressed individuals who are looking for that 'something more'. I can say us because that was me. I didn't know that I was looking for more. Looking for connection. Looking for myself. I was lost and didn't even know it.
This is probably 1 of a million stories like this and there will be people rolling their eyes at yet another yoga changed my life story. If you stop for just a hot minute, you may start to realise that there must be something in this yoga business after all considering we are all banging on about it. I don't know about you but I've yet to hear a yoga ruined my life story.
It's not about getting on the mat. This is about who I am, what I associate yoga with, and who I want to become. This comes largely (for me) through Patanjali's 8 limbs of yoga and specifically the Yamas and the Niyamas.
The Niyamas - Our internal ethics
Saucha - Purity
Santosha - Contentment
Tapas - Disciplined energy
Svadhyaya - Self-study
The Yamas - Our external ethics
Ahimsa - Compassion
Satya - Truth
Asteya - Responsibility and non-stealing
Brahmacharya - Unity, and control
Aparigraha - Non-possessiveness
All of the above are present are choices we make in everyday life and what hit me like a wet fish is that these ethics are the way of life I want to strive for. Since doing more research into the Yamas and Niyamas they are showing up everywhere. Over the coming yoga blogs, I'll be sharing my Satya (truth), my story with you. Yoga is an inward journey and it has given me the strength to share my truth with you. To help you, to guide you and make you laugh a little along the way.
Yoga is not just about getting on the mat and my mission is explaining a modern woman's take on an ancient philosophy which has the ability to change lives. I know this because they have changed mine.