Yoga and poetry with breakfast

Today is a good day. I woke up with the Sun and, as promised, performed 20 pairs of the Sun salutation in this gorgeous sun room my aunt has upstairs. It’s an empty room, with white walls, coral floors, and just large spaces in the walls where the windows should be. It is open and wonderful. The cool morning air belongs here. Man, that yoga session kicked my butt!!

Yoga is an expression of life. One expression of yoga is exercise. Many people do yoga with this intent – that yoga will provide them with their daily income of exercise. Another expression of yoga is flexibility. We do yoga to improve and maintain our flexibility – to free ourselves of the cage our body becomes with time. To feel totally free in our own body. Another expression of yoga is body repair. There is tremendous healing that happens when you practice yoga. There are specific postures tailor-made for a particular ailment, ache, or simply a block we have associated with a body part. Actually, today I was reading a book on the different benefits of yoga (and falling in love- as I do every time I do something yoga related) which described a posture you can do to help heal your body of the common cold. This posture involved sitting in a certain way, opening your mouth, sticking your tongue out and screaming! Ahhh, yoga can sure be fun!

All this being said, the highest form of yoga is, and will always be meditation.

Though yoga has major effectiveness in the other expressions, when a yoga practioner seeks the highest form, you gain the greatest and most powerful benefits.

During my morning Yoga practice, I realized that in order to perform these salutations with the elegance and flow that it requires, you must be completely conscious and present in the moment. If you are not, it may become an arduous thing, and our intentions are lost in the space of common thought. If, while I am performing my 3rd salutation, I am constantly thinking (and probably panicking ;)) about how I have 37 more to go, I begin to ache. I begin to feel “I don’t want to be here doing this.”

So, I try not to let my mind wonder. My 3rd salutation becomes my world. This is ALL I need to do. And I keep telling myself this, and before I know it, I am on my last one, performing it with as much zeal as my first.

I then took a nice cold shower. Mmm. Ate breakfast and read poetry. I like to choose a poem a day, write it down before breakfast and reflect on it for the rest of the day. I will share with you today’s poem:

Ali in Battle

Learn from Ali how to fight

Without your ego participating

God’s Lion did nothing

That didn’t originate

From his deep center.

Once in battle he got the best of a certain knight

And quickly drew his sword. The man,

Helpless on the ground, spat

In Ali’s face. Ali dropped his sword,

Relaxed, and helped the man to his feet.

“Why have you spared me?

How has lightening contracted back

Into its cloud? Speak, my prince,

So that my soul can begin to stir

In me like an embryo”

Ali was quiet and then finally answered,

“I am God’s Lion, not the lion of passion.

The sun is my lord. I have no longing

Except for the One.

When a wind of personal reaction comes,

I do not go along with it.

There are many winds full of anger,

And lust and greed. They move the rubbish

Around, but the solid mountain of our true nature

Stays where it’s always been.

There’s nothing now

Except the divine qualities.

Come through the opening into me.

Your impudence was better than any reverence,

Because in this moment I am you and you are me.

I give you this opened heart as God gives gifts:

The poison of your spit has become

The honey of friendship.”

–         Rumi

I hope you are all having a great day/night. I’m going to stick to my schedule and write another post for the blog now!




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