Your body is the image of the world around you.🧡
BKS IYENGAR writes in The Tree Of Yoga that individual growth is a must, and yoga develops each individual. Your body is the world around you: it is the a big international club.
We have 300 joints- that means there are three hundred club members associated in one body. The blood circulation is ninety-six thousand kilometres long if you take in all the arteries, veins, and smaller blood vessels all together. And there are sixteen thousand kilometres of biological energy flowing in the nervous system. The surface of your lungs is as big as a tennis court. Your brain has four lobes. BKS Iyengage asks; is this not like a big international club for one individual?
He continues with the writing of how yoga provides help to all these parts to coordinate together so that they work in harmony together. “Yoga works on your conscious. Yoga works on your consciousness. Yoga works works on your intelligence. Yoga works on your senses. Yoga works on your flesh. Yoga works on your on your organs or perception. Thus, it is a global art.”
As I read this book preparing for a four week yoga series starting in August
called Hatha and Yama’s, I am reminded how we can never stop learning about yoga and ourselves. When we begin to take care of ourselves; we are caring of everyone and everything around us. BKS says; “ when your body, mind and soul are healthy and harmonious you bring health and harmony to the world— not by withdrawing from the world but by being a healthy living organ of the body of humanity.”
There has been so much hurt to humanity especially in recent, with the unmarked graves of innocent souls of indigenous children. My heart breaks as we learn more and more of young lives in stollen violent way. As I hear more and see more I ask myself how was I so blind to all of this? Even now I feel myself withdrawing because it is too sad, too horrible. In a small warped way I think if I do not think or watch the news it will simply go away. I am so wrong.This I know in every cell of my being.
It was perceived that an indigenous soul, body and culture was different. Was it thought as not as important from “white” ones? In yoga we learn that human suffering is the same whether one is from “Eastern culture or Western culture.” The afflictions of the mind, body and soul are the same. Yoga is a universal culture. It is designed for removal of fluctuations and afflictions, pains and sorrows. I feel BKS says it best;
“ Yoga is one as the world is one and the people of the world are one. Because you belong to a place called Italy or a place called America, you become Italian or an American. I belong to India, so therefor I am Indian, but as human beings there is no difference between us.”
I do struggle with knowing how to navigate this short and mystical life. My mental health has highs and lows and then every now and then even my yoga practice is forgotten. When I begin the practice again I naturally come back to yogic philosophy and remember what the teacher’s before me taught me. This is ahimsa.
I start by being compassionate towards my own physical and mental body. My mind says, “namaste in bed it is soooooo nice here.” My body say’s , “move and stretch... see it feels good right?” My ego says, “ you should do more yoga you are a yoga teacher.” And then the ego says says, “you rocked that warrior!” What I am trying to say is .... ahimsa is where I start in the beginning. Because to me, it means gentle compassion and many times this is exactly what my body and mind needs.
The “Yama’s” is the first limb of yoga and within this is Ahimsa. In the Tree of Life it is the “roots” of our tree because it is the foundation from all the rest to grow. I learned that Ahimsa means: non-violence, not merely in restrictive sense of refraining from killing and violence, but in positice and comprehensive LOVE embracing ALL CREATION.
I continue to work towards understanding this. To practice not only in my asana (physical) practice but towards myself, others and out into the world. It is a practice, each moment each day, and each year this will not be the same. Each day offering new wonders, struggles and that I will practice yoga because I enjoy doing it and also enjoy its benefit!
I invite you all to join me in this beautiful way of living. You will experience a yoga practice together with like minded ones. I know in my heart it is a wonderful place to start. Find our more at www.georginakylloyoga.com.