Tag Archives: journey

A different kind of journey

There is yoga. And then there is inner yoga. We all start off at the first level. When we decide to go ‘check it out’…(psssst…and hopefully in the process lose some weight). But once we go there we realize that we don’t really sweat very much and then they make us lie down and relax. A lot. A lot. A lot. So much so that you can hear at least two people snoring in class for sure. Duh.

Many of us give up on our yogic journey somewhere at this point.

For those of us who persist, the real benefits of yoga begin to unravel. Quietly. One breath at a time.

That’s the road I’m taking now. It’s a really long journey and if I need to continue and reach the end, I need to shed a lot of excess baggage. The first thing I’m trying to load off is my inhibitions. You know, that horrid thing in your mind which tells you this-looks-tough-I-don’t-think-I-can-do-this. Yeah. That. Drop it. And don’t look back. You can do every asana there is under the sun. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow. Maybe not for another two years. But eventually, you’ll get there. Believe. And you will. The good news is this percolates into everything you do in life. There is nothing you cannot do, if you set your mind to it. It’s an amazing feeling, this quiet self confidence you develop within you.

There is a flip side to this as well. Don’t punish yourself. Don’t look at what others are able to achieve and develop a complex. This is about you and your body. Push yourself. But know when to stop. Listen to your body and eventually the body will give in to your mind. Be patient.

It’s amazing how this can be applied in life too. Sometimes we punish ourselves for being too thin, or too fat, or too dark, or too pimply or for having perennial bad hair days…well, it does not matter. Really, it does not. Perish those thoughts. Come to terms with who you are. As long as you are healthy and feel happy from within, there is nothing to sulk about. Stop worrying and feel at peace with yourself.

Another baggage I need to shed is my ego. This one’s a little harder. (Pretty much like the elusive padmasana and chakrasana!). It’s taken permanent lodging in one corner of my mind. Like an annoying guest who refuses to go away. It pops up unnecessarily and poisons my mind. If a client rejects my work – I feel anger. How could they! My work! I put my heart and soul into it! And so on and so forth. But fact remains that it makes me dive deeper, explore other dimensions and come up with something better. Rejection is good. Failure is even better. This is what I tell my ego. It’s not listening yet. But I need to keep trying.

There’s much more to learn. Much more to let go. I’m realizing that every day. With every inhalation I’m learning something new about myself. With every exhalation I’m realizing that there are things I need to let go. It’s a long journey. But I’m happy to have taken the first steps. Who knows where this is going to take me. But honestly, who cares about the destination. It’s the journey that’s invigorating. The destination will become clear one day.

Hopefully.

meditation

An orgasmic journey

Music. It’s incredible how this one word can mean so many different things to different people! It can transport you to another world at the blink of an eye. It an get you calm, romantic, repentant, philosophical…all in a jiffy. So it was that this weekend I went on a long, refreshing journey. Alone. Just me. And music.

This Saturday I was at a concert by a South Korean group called Gong Myong. They are a group of extremely versatile, young men who seem to play every type of instrument – be it flute, guitar, drums…and they have even discovered their own instrument made out of hollow bamboo barks – called Gong Myong (yes their group is named after this instrument).

I simply closed my eyes and let their music transport me. The melodious flute took me on a gentle, floating journey across lush, green paddy fields. I touched the soft green of the paddy and moved on light as the wind. Past the paddy fields across a breathtaking valley of wild flowers. I could almost smell their wild earthy smell. They grew untamed, in profusion, swaying in the breeze and I swayed with them.

The music changed – percussion dominated. And I was thrown into a harsh landscape. Climbing rocks. Traversing peaks and valleys. Breathing in cool, fresh mountain air. Ahead of me lay snow capped peaks. The rhythm urged me on as I moved determinedly towards that snow capped peak. Somehow I felt that out there was the peace I’m seeking. Frozen in time.

The Guitar came on and the mood changed. I was knee deep in desert sand. It’s glowing gold and its so soft that it feels like I’m walking on feathers. I give in to the softness of the sand and just laid myself down on its silken lap. The sand is so supple that I start sliding and floating gently down an endless dune.

The music reaches a crescendo. Suddenly I’m elsewhere in deep bamboo forest. Surrounded by these tall, green trees. Trapped in their embrace, my mind seeks a way out. I feel like I need to breathe. I rush past the bower of trees and suddenly in front of me is a clearing and I see a gushing waterfall. Its sound is harsh, yet the droplets of water that fall on my skin feel oh-so-gentle. I give in to the urge to go stand beneath it and let the water cleanse me. I plunge in expecting the water to the electrifyingly cool. But it is surprisingly warm. I stand there beneath its force. It splatters down on me. Beating like those heavy drums on my head. Coursing down my being. Getting into my skin. Flowing through my body. It strives to reach out to my soul. I stand still. The whole experience feels amazingly ethereal…

Suddenly the music ends.

As the audience claps appreciatively, I’m jerked awake and the vision pops like a bursting bubble. Ah the power of music. It’s almost orgasmic. They begin yet another song. I close my eyes and yet another journey begins…