Contemporary yoga culture has to realise the fundamental disconnect between a relatively universal and modern intention that the practice should lead to self-awareness, self-responsibility, self-agency; and a teaching methodology that emerged in the early 20th Century based on telling people exactly what to do and how the practice should make you feel.
Any way you consider them, these are logically incompatible.
~ Theodora Wildcroft, Yoga Teacher & Researcher
I saw this post today and it struck a chord with me, as I’ve been told many times that what I’m teaching “isn’t” Yoga as what people expect, and that it could be confusing to seekers of the practice of Yoga to call it Yoga.
If Yoga is defined as a union, a connection that bridges the gap between personal and universal, between shadow and light, between past and future, between body and mind, isn’t Yoga then a practice of self inquiry and exploration, an innate curiosity to explore these fundamental questions of existence - of who we are, why we are here, of our relationships with our body, self and others.
But it is so easy to seek the safety net of a label, a lineage, a style, be classified and put in a box, be told what to do instead of having to think and act on our own terms, so we are less dangerous, more predictable. I’m sure there are many out there who genuinely want to help others, and their opinion is what they think is the best, and they are dishing it out on a silver platter - formulated and sequenced.
For me what truly propels change is the embodied wisdom that honours our fundamental needs as human beings to explore, question, challenge dogmas. Insight is a connection to the present moment, a deeply personal experience that often manifest when judgment and labels fall away.
This, is what I hope to facilitate as Yoga.
Sitting with grief
The quiet amongst the chaos
The stillness amidst the turmoil
Your eyes your smile
Your warm embrace
Your voice your words
That open door that
Your shadow still lingers in
Awaits your footsteps
Hand on my shoulder
In silence in company
We sit in grief
I stood watching you while you rested
The sense that your closed eyes
Might blink open
In the brilliance of your light
I stood watching you while you slept
The beauty of your heart
Beat an invisible rhythm
Reciting the nourishment of your care
I stood watching you in your repose
The scent of your skin
Wrapped around your body
A warm haven of embrace lays in wait
We walked the long road
Into the furnace of rites
I bow down in your grace
As your flame licked away my tears
These ashes of memories
Scattered into the ocean
Into the eternal
Ebb and flow
May the light of the sun
Dance and celebrate
In the colours
Of all your love
May the moon watch over you
A mirror of your soul
Reflecting the tender beauty
Of all your strife
May the sea birds sing you songs
Of your children
Offering your protection
In your journey safely home
In loving memory of my father, Chua Kian Peng❤
Registered Yoga Therapist, Somatic Movement Educator, Bodyworker, Yoga Teacher Trainer