The Path to Enlightenment
Be careful . . . you just might be heading towards enlightenment. We've been noticing some of the warning signs. As many of you know, the YogaLife Institute hosts a Teacher Training Program for those interested in teaching Yoga, or to deepen their understanding of Yoga philosophy, practice and living. A graduate noticed that they could tell when someone had just entered the program vs. being half-way or nearly finished.
A new participant is often excited and grateful to have found a "home" for their otherwise crazy world ideas, like a desire to reduce stress, promote health, be more present and cultivate their best Self. Eager smiles and enthusiasm remind us all of the "beginners mind" and fill the studio with a bustling energy.
Half way through the program, folks start to complain a little bit about how difficult it can be to try to live like a yogi in our modern world. In fact, it may not actually feel that great anymore and, well, to be honest, I'm not sure this "Yoga thing" really works because I'm not feeling great like when I started!
We fumble a bit as we start to realize that concepts like "non-violence" mean that we have to learn how to be nicer to ourselves. We fumble a bit when we realize that our dharma or path may be different from someone else, and that if our best friend, mother or partner doesn't like Yoga (or Yoga philosophy) that's perfectly fine. We fumble a bit when we start to recognize that the person we are becoming does not necessarily fit into the same set of behaviors and lifestyle we once had.
After enough practice studying ourselves in relation to a Yoga lifestyle in the modern world, we are humbled. We have surrendered a lot...ideas, righteousness, perfection, control, unhealthful behaviors and thoughts. We have learned to listen more and talk less. We laugh more! We are not perfect but understand ourselves. With this degree of compassion for ourselves, we have greater compassion and love for others. We need less and are more comfortable just being present.
I'm reminded of a cross-stitch hanging on my great aunt's bathroom wall: "Before I had six children, I had six theories about parenting. Now I have six children, and no theories."
We welcome you to join us on this most interesting journey...