Yoga in Sanskrit is "yog", meaning "to yolk". We are not talking about yolking eggs here, although metaphorically you can understand the motion of yolking together the egg white and the yolk, which in the yoga world translates to combining, mixing or coming into union with your higher self. People come to their yoga mat for all kinds of reasons, but most importantly it is because yoga gives them tools in some capacity to feel better in body + mind. Especially in our world right now during the Covid-19 pandemic we can acknowledge that this is a stressful time for most. Many are facing financial hardships, social isolation from friends and family, death and uncertainty about when the nightmare will be over.
As humans we operate well with routine and schedules. The current state of affairs has turned all of that upside down for many. With childcare and schools closed and working from home we have been forced to adjust and quickly. Considering the number of recent unemployment claims it would be safe to say that a phenomenal amount of people have lost their incomes and are having their livelihoods jeopardized. Reported domestic violence cases have increased as well as a spike in those experiencing mental health symptoms. Things are undoubtedly uncertain at this time more than ever in the last 100 years or so in the western world.
How can yoga help with embracing uncertainty right now? Much of our suffering from a yogic perspective is from attachment to the past or the future rather than the current moment. This moment means this exact breath you are taking right now. The moment that existed a second ago no longer exists and the moment that will happen in the next minute does not exist yet. Something yoga teaches us is to try to stay in the present moment, which is much easier to say than to do. However, training the mind can only be done through practice, which takes conscious and willing effort to create change. Think about how many years you have been on this planet. Now think about how many neuronal brain functions and synapses have been formed by all your experiences that are an impediment for you to be present in this exact moment during a global pandemic. It takes small, consistent steps toward recalibrating your mind.
Contemplative practices such as yoga and meditation are termed "practices" because it is a practice and practice makes perfect. While we are not striving for perfection, we as the human race need to strive toward thriving rather than merely surviving. Crisis put us in survival mode, which is driven by fear. This fear is fear of the unknown, the future, things we do not have certainty about. Yoga is the tool that can be used to bring a more peaceful mind and help us to embrace uncertainty and grasp calmness in our inner-knowing. The foundation must be strong just as warrior preparing for battle. Using yoga and mindfulness practices is one method of this warrior training. The time to start is now and the perfect time is always. We are going to be okay. We are all in this together. Many blessings to all. The light in me sees the light is all of you. Namaste.
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