Core Teachings

Yoga Sutras of Patañjali #1.3: Tada drashtuh svarupe avasthanam: Then the seer abides (and rests) in his/her own true splendor.

I’ve been taking Pilates classes the last few weeks.  It’s been fun being a student in someone else’s class.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with Pilates, it’s a series of exercises that were developed by Joseph Pilates.  The main focus is on core strength.  I’m still a beginner with a lot to learn but the emphasis on the core blends nicely with my yoga practice.  And it’s done wonders for my standing poses!

Of course, I always tell me students, “it’s not about the poses”.  And it’s not.  The core teachings of yoga are about awareness and stilling the fluctuations of the mind.  Doing a small controlled movement can still the mind.  So can observing the breath.  There are endless opportunities to practice yoga.

So, it’s not about core strength either.  It’s about maintaining a beginner’s mind and staying curious about how the mind and body respond to new movements, experiences, and information.  At the core of our being, we’re all perfect.  We just need to quiet the mind long enough to remember it.  Again, and again.

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