Monday, March 15, 2010
The Coil; Moving Prayer
This post is part of 'The Coil' hosted by Greenspell every new and full moon- go check it out!
(please note, this post is a part of my personal journey. I feel all spiritual journeys are valid and beautiful as long as they are honest and healthy)
Spirituality. Funnily enough, it being 'THE' point of yoga, I don't talk much about it here. I think perhaps it has a lot to do with it being personal... and not really meshing with Yoga.
As an entry to 'The Coil', Greenspell has pointed out that New Moons equal New Beginnings, creativity and perhaps new adventures. I thought for this moon's entry I would share tidbits of a discussion I had last week regarding the 'point' of yoga.
I met with a local studio owner, Robert from The Yoga Loft. Robert is quite unique in that he has been a practitioner for over a decade and he has a PhD in Political Science, focus on Philosophy. His primary interest: the dichotomy between Eastern and Western Yogic Philosophy. This guy knows his stuff.
As Yoga begins to broaden, expand and take on a New Life in my world, this question of spirituality keeps popping into my brain.
Robert's take? Yoga is spiritual. It's our way to 'let-go' of all external and internal attachments, including our thoughts, so that we can connect with God. Everything else can easily become distraction or an attachment. For example, being attached to one discipline of yoga, one set sequence, one instructor etc.
Seriously a wonderful conversation (over coffee!).
Most discourse around Yoga and spirituality is patriarchal in nature and often uses Hindu representations and allegories. God is always labeled in the masculine, represented in the masculine and goddesses, although present, are outnumbered by more prominent male gods. I can't relate. It feels fake.
Further, this concept of 'non-attachment', letting go of all in order to unite with the Divine, really doesn't fit with my view of spirituality. For myself, the Divine IS everything. My spiritual self doesn't exist as something 'other' or separate, but is a part of every thing and every one. It's how we make connections with our world, with our community and with our planet.
Truly, I have yet to attend or read a passage regarding spirituality and Yoga that easily fits into my view of the Goddess.
Of course, this doesn't mean that Yoga is not spiritual for me. In fact, quite the opposite, Yoga has grown into how I communicate with my spiritual more. I like Seane Corn's explanation of 'moving prayer'. During class, this is dampened significantly as the language and discourse of traditional Yoga peaks in, but in my own practice... it takes on a new Light.
My sun salutations become experiences for grounding, for collecting and sending energy and for quiet introspection on all that I am grateful. Quiet musings to the Goddess during my practice, reconnecting with Nature outside my window.
This New Moon, I'd like to set aside these strange expectations of how I *must* mesh traditional Yoga spirituality and myself. Which I guess is a form of 'letting go'....
Blessings and happy New Moon!
article copyright of EcoYogini at ecoyogini.blogspot.com