With the change of seasons, comes change in yoga class attendance. The shorter days and cooler nights (and the rain) seem to bring students back to class. Or perhaps it’s having the kids go back to school. I’d like to think that everyone’s been doing a home practice over the summer but people say that’s not necessarily so!
Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras list and describe the obstacles to yoga. The kleshas (obstacles) are lack of knowledge, ego, attachment, aversion, and fear (of death). Life is full of things that “get in the way”. People often tell me they are too stiff to do yoga (which cracks me up). By understanding that yoga is not all about flexibility, or strength, or even sitting on a mat, we free ourselves up to do yoga.
Yoga is about awareness and understanding. You don’t need special abilities or clothes or even a teacher to do it. A yoga practice is fueled by the desire to gain knowledge, the willingness to sit with our discomfort (both literally and figuratively) and the courage to face our fears.
Hopefully, what we gain from yoga practice is a more authentic experience of our life. And if we get a little stronger and a little more flexible, that’s okay too.