Weekend 5 of 200-hr YTT at The House of Yoga was the most intense one so far on so many levels. However, I can honestly say, that all the challenges it brings are totally worth it!
What I’m learning
Or more accurately: what I’m struggling with at the moment..
It started nicely with silent mindful walk and yoga practise in the park, which only added more positive vibe to already strong sense of connection with my fellow yogi(ni)s. Next, we went through the remaining 4 series of Journey into Power (JiP) sequence, finished with little why-not-crazy-dance celebration. Then, we moved on to self inquiry: the watcher and the observer, which pretty much blew my mind. The question I kept asking myself was: how often am I being an observer of what’s happening around me from the safety of being somewhere in the background? Observing, but not participating or contributing? Certainly, not exactly what was meant by the observer in this discussion, but I have always very strongly identified myself with this role. Listening to everything being said only made me increasingly confused. I realised (not for the first time) how much I’m in my head, trying hard to grasp everything on intellectual level. So much so, that I became agitated and kept looking for and trying to come up with something “smart” to contribute. After all of that internal struggle, my main take away from “observing” was, that I don’t need to understand and all I really need is to drop from my head to my body, feel it, let my emotions/sensations/whatever else out, to connect to all of this on heart/being instead of head level. Note to self: be kind to yourself!
On day 2 we had some anatomy basics: iliopsoas – important, but often overlooked muscle group, and intro to tension and compression. All of that quite illuminating, especially the fact, that structure of our bones can determine / limit our flexibility to some extent. We finished with 3 hours (!) practise teach, so that everyone had a 5 minutes go at the teaching. Being tired after intensity of the whole weekend kinda helped, otherwise I would be even more nervous if we had this experience at the very beginning. Not to worry though, that’s how the weekend 6 starts – 20 minutes for each one of us.. As one of my yogi friends said: “if we can’t do it in front of each other we have no hope in teaching a class. Maybe we do get nervous but it’s because we care.. And that’s honest and it’s great”. Love it!
Podcast episode that impacted me the most
It will be 3 podcasts this time:
- Revolution Health Radio: The Healing Power of the Placebo Effect with Jo Marchant. Placebo is a fascinating subject and might be a clue to how our mental attitude and thought processes create external results. Once, in my not-so-tamed youth, I became drunk only because I was convinced, that this orange juice that my friend served me contained vodka, even though it didn’t. So you see, placebo is very close to my heart..
- Tuff Love: Stop F&*king Self-Sabotaging. Back to Rob’s podcast: self sabotage is exactly what I did last weekend. I was there, but I felt like I keep shooting myself in the foot.
- Yoga Revealed Podcast – Bhavani Maki: The Yoga Sutras and Beyond. I went through a few iterations of starting and moving on to a different book about Yoga Sutras, looking for one that links philosophy with real life examples and hints how to apply sutras on practical level. That’s why, after hearing this interview, I added The Yogi’s Roadmap book to my wishlist.
I found a website with visual tool, that shows representation of 5 emotions. It’s called Atlas of Emotions and was inspired by conversations between the Dalai Lama and Paul Ekman about the science of emotions.
“The Atlas of Emotions was created to give us more awareness of our emotions, and sometimes even some choice about what we are feeling, through better understanding of how emotions work.”
What I’m experimenting with
Just 2 small updates here:
- Keeping up with self practise using JiP sequence in its fullness now
- I’m more often reverting back to written word now or more precisely: using kindle instead of audible. It’s easier and far more effective to remember what I have read, if I can access my highlights and notes rather than relying on my memory.
Inspiration for the week
Quote from The Path of the Yoga Sutras: A Practical Guide to the Core of Yoga by Nicolai Bachman, which very much related to my dilemma from the last weekend, which takes me a layer deeper and gives me an insight what to do about it:
Citta is our heart-mind, our outer and inner psyche, and the primary place of interest in the Yoga Sūtras. Our heart-mind sits between the ever-changing outside world and an inner light of awareness. This inner light never changes, and it represents pure, unconditional love. A heart-mind sullied with mental-emotional baggage prevents the inner light from shining through, causing us to act or react according to our deep habitual patterns of behavior. As the heart-mind is clarified, more light can shine through it, and our actions become more loving and positive toward others and ourselves. One of the core aspects of yoga is the process of clarifying the heart-mind ( citta-prasādana ), so external objects are perceived accurately and truthfully.