Yoga - The Art Of Living
Yoga is commonly known as a form of movement. This is certainly a part of it, however it is actually a small part of the whole system of Yoga. Yoga is a multi faceted practice which delves deep into practices of conscious awareness, mindfulness, and helps give us tools to live life in a clearer, more informed and intentional way.
A lot of the practices are intended to get us in touch with a clearer perspective so that we can make better decisions. One of my all time favourite analogies, I heard from Erich Schiffmann, a renowned teacher in Los Angeles. He gives an analogy of a helicopter. He tells the story of: imagine you are driving in your car, and from your ground level perspective, the road ahead looks clear. So you're driving along feeling great, thinking you will definitley get to your destination on time. All of a sudden you hit a road block: that the road is closed. Now imagine you had turned on the radio. There are traffic stations that pay helicopters to fly overhead assessing the areas, keeping you informed of road conditions. Had you thought to turn on the radio you would have had access to the aerial perspective from the helicopters, and would have known to take the alternate route. In this analogy, our every-day thinking from our busy life is the ground level perspective, while a quiet mind helps us tap into the aerial perspective. Turning on the radio is turning our attention inwardly and taking some time to quiet down our mind through practicing stillness. The analogy is telling us: instead of relying on your limited ground-level perspective ( your busy mind), if you turn on the radio ( decide to take 5-10 minutes or even 20 minutes out of your day to sit quietly) you get access to a much greater perspective, and will get better answers and be able to make better decisions based on a wider perspective. The practice of quieting our mind through tools like meditation help us gain a clearer perspective to make better decisons. The Big Idea is: the next time you feel you have a decision to make - and recognize that any time you have a decision, it means you are not clear on what to do. This is simply because when you are clear on what to do - you do it, there is no decision to be made. So the next time you have a decision to make, you can take that as an opportunity to sit quietly for 5-10 minutes, even 20 if you have it, and take that time to practice mindfulness by focusing on your breathing, and allowing your experience to be what it is. It is not a guarantee, but it is one effective tool to clear your mind, which will help your mind make better decisions, giving you clarity on how to proceed next. Often the decision may not become evident immediately, but usually, just by taking that time out of your day to quiet down your mind, clarity and perspective will surface later on. My challenge to you is to try this practice and I love to hear about your experiences and how these tools actually affect you.
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