Day 74

Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it is stupid ~ Albert Einstein

 I love Albert Einstein, and his amazing, inspiring quotes. In looking for a quote for today I typed in ‘do what you love’ in Google, and this was one of the quotes that came up. The fish needs to learn it is a great fish, and love being a fish, not try to be something it is not, because that just leads to disappointment. If you do what you love, you will find your place in the world.

 The reason I was searching for ‘do what you love’ is for this week, we’re supposed to practice the sequence we came up with for our 2nd assignment – which I LOVE!

We got our daily practice for the week today – which is choose one meditation to practice daily, do all the pranayama (breathing) exercises, and choose the variation that you like best (out of the ones that have different versions), and then to practice our own asana routine.

I am super excited that we get to do our own ‘class’ as our asana practice this week! I love the routine I came up with. We have to say our verbal cues out loud as we practice, and record ourselves to try and get rid of any ‘filler’ words we might be using that we aren’t aware we are using. Like repeating the same phrase over and over again. It’s okay to say something , but say it differently each time. And get rid of the ‘ums’ and ‘uhs’ and ‘and next/and then…’ things like that. I don’t think I have any atrocious filler words (off the top of my head, but I’m sure I do! and I just don’t realize it).

I HATE the sound of my voice (as I’m sure most/all people do), so I’m not looking forward to recording my voice to see what things I repeat when I am practicing my verbal cues for the poses.

I did my meditation first thing this morning, before work, because I learned during this weekends’ lecture on meditation that doing it in the morning is the best time, and also using the ‘RPM’ principle – aka Rise, Pee (or brush your teeth, shower, do whatever morning routine you do when you first get out of bed!) and then Meditate. Or if morning doesn’t work for you, remember RAW – Right After Work. And it’s important to have a dedicated space (as well as a time (morning or evening) to meditate. My dedicated space is on my meditation cushion in my personal yoga space (aka spare room/book room).

So when I got home from work, I did my daily pranayama practice (where I didn’t have to do the variations of Ujjayi and Brahmari that I’m not super fond of!), and then did my 30 minute very own/very first personally designed yoga practice (it took me 32 minutes). I really like that I started the practice in the restorative posture of Child’s Pose – which you see rarely as the start of a class.  I am looking forward to teaching my class next year (to the rest of the YTT students, and also it will be the first class in my 4 series (4 classes) I’m going to teach as part of my ‘practicum’.

Journaling and Reflection Time question for the week:

Reflecting on the Kleshas  – obstacles – what would I like to support and/ or change in my thinking and actions? how will I live a more peaceful and full life, reflecting my true nature?

The Kleshas create suffering in our lives. There are 5 of these obstacles.

Avidya – is ignorance of our true nature/reality

Asmita – Egoism – We identify with our ego, with external ideas about who we are, our self image, which is not the ‘real’ us.

Raga – attachment to pleasurable things, and when we don’t get what we want, we suffer.

Dvesha – Aversion of painful/unpleasant experiences.

Abhinivesha – fear of death – and avoidance of it.

Well my main thing I want to change is Abhinivesha – my fear of death, especially after my mom’s death last year. I’ve read a lot of books on the soul/spirit, and afterlife, and our universal consciousness, as a way to come to terms with death as not a final ending of life, but it is still something I need to work on. I also want to try to not identify with external things about myself as much, and also not be concerned with material attachments (though I’m not overly so. At least I’d like to think so anyway!). And of course all of us want to avoid unpleasant things, that’s only natural right? Survival?

But the fact that there is always the striving for pleasure and avoidance of pain, its so polarizing, one or the other – the trick is to find the even keel, the path that goes between the two, I think. That’s what we should strive for – contentment (or santosha – one of the 5 Niyamas).

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