September 30, 2008
I’m here, doing this Training. So far, I’m enjoying it. Well, you know, mostly enjoying it. It’s got it’s ups and downs (have I said that before??). But there are things that I may never understand about being here. And it’s probably for the best. Maybe in six or ten or twelve months it will add up and make sense. Maybe not. Who knows?
This experience is so unique. I’m almost three weeks in, more or less, and I can’t even really explain it to anyone. I have come to the conclusion that it’s just something to let go. Explaining this journey to anyone who either has never walked it or never will is, well, a little maddening. I don’t mind answering questions, of course. I love to talk. I love to share, obviously, and writing is one of my outlets. But for me, I have started to become more reclusive in the things I’m sharing. I’ve given more vague answers than specific ones and I do it on purpose. I get the same questions over and over. What’s it like? How are the classes? What are you learning? How do you feel? My answers are generally the same. It’s challenging, but amazing. The classes are tough, but good. I am learning more than I can ever share here, and I feel awesome. But what people really want to know is far deeper than than. They want to know if I’m going crazy with homesickness, if the classes are killing me, and if my body is really holding up in this extreme situation. They want to know what I’m being indoctrinated with, and how different I will be when I come back to them in 7 weeks. I know, I know you all so well.
But the truth is, I may never even understand it all. I am trying. But it’s a little like being told a parable that you hold tightly to for years and years. Then, suddenly, one day that story becomes applicable. Light is shone on the truth of it, and you suddenly understand. I think a lot of yoga is like that. We are given nuggets of wisdom, truth, stories, parables, thoughts, ideas. If we are wise, and are paying attention, we store those things away for later use. That’s what this Training is. We are storing up truth, ideas, knowledge, and information that will enable us to go out and teach this yoga to others. I (we) don’t always celebrate this, of course. Why on earth is Boss keeping us up until 2 am watching a movie we don’t get? Why are we sitting here listening to lectures hour after hour? Why? Because we may never understand them. BUT, then again, one day we may. And I think just the glimpse of hope that one day we may is reason enough to listen.
Last night in Jim’s class I became incredibly angry. WHY is he holding this set of Cobra for so long? I am so FUCKING HOT, let me out!!!! I want to lay my head down. Ugh, doesn’t he get that? I can’t stand it when teachers hold us in this posture for so LONG. Oh and why is the heat so oppressive tonight? WHY? I hate this. Well, obviously I don’t hate it. Obviously I love it, or I wouldn’t be here, right? YES! Of course I love it. I came out of that cobra weeping, sobbing, and cursing the hot, soaked mat I was laying on. But five minutes later, as I did floor bow, I understood that long cobra. My warm spine bent easily and effortlessly. I held that posture with gratitude. Later Jim went on to tell us a story about loyalty, and how it’s one of the hightest Spiritual attributes you can have. Loyalty, huh? You mean, like loyalty to this yoga? Yeah, see? I get that.
There’s a lot I may never understand here. But what I know for sure is that it doesn’t matter. I do the best I can, give what I have to give, and commit to learning it. I may never understand even a fraction of what I am taught during this Training. But it’s all stored inside of me, like precious jewels that I may one day need to pull out to save my life. And for that, I am truly thankful.
July 10, 2008
Oh the pain in my spine. I woke up this morning exquisitely sore from last night’s class. I was tearing up during Half Moon. Yeah, pain..
Pain, or discomfort, has its place. There’s good pain and bad pain. Sometimes good pain brings us farther along in our postures. Sometimes pain damages. Sometimes pain teaches us that we are totally lacking in something. My pain is teaching me that there are imbalances in my body. My pain is showing me that where I have flexibility, I lack strength. Where I have strength, I lack flexibility. It’s teaching me that I have abused my joints and done stupid stuff to myself over the years. My pain is teaching me to work harder on set ups and pay closer attention to the words in the class. Left hip forward means left hip forward. Right foot out means right foot out.. All for good reason. No excuses.
I feel so much better now. The series always shows me that it works. I have renewed faith in the process after every 90 minutes. Even if I start off the class in tears.