“and if you don’t know, now you know, you know” Biggie Smalls

For those of you wondering, no I am not a big hip-hop rap music fan but for some small reason I can’t get this lyric out of my head.  I am pretty sure it wedged itself there during the NYU days and now as I finish up 1Q84 I am even more unsure of what I know and what I don’t know.  Help me Biggie!  I have been spending a lot of time with myself in practice and you know the number one thing that scares people about an at home Ashtanga Yoga practice is the amount of time required to hang out with yourself.  The good yoga shala’s try to keep distraction to a minimum but we all know that even in the quietest of group settings if you want to you can find the loudest attention getters and literally just get through the practice.

Have you ever stood at the top of your mat feeling like total rubbish and practiced anyway?  I just did that….and while it really isn’t the coziest feeling (why do people think that a yoga practice is cozy?) it is the juiciest.  It is the reminder.  I do this practice for the evolution of my self, soul, and spirit.  I do this practice to be a witness to the changes that are necessary to live a more awake life and the strength to follow through on that change.  I do this practice for me…not poses, or a teacher’s approval, or to see and be seen.

I guess I didn’t know and now I know…you know.  Thanks Biggie.

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3 Responses to Juicy

  1. Debbie says:

    Hey Jill. I feel like you are speaking to me. Eveytime I have a horribly distracted practice.. I remind myself why I am doing this … for the evolution of myself, soul and spirit… it is wonderful to see the words in print. Thank you.

    ……And in the loudest of settings we can find quiet in spite of the attention seekers and experience a juicy practice…

    • Debbie!!
      it is true the shala in Mysore is one of the loudest places I’ve practiced…loads of people, the shouting of ONE MORE, the dogs barking, the newspaper reading, the constant flow of traffic BUT it is the space that I feel ever focused and ready to let the practice work on me rather than me trying to work the practice.

  2. Sara says:

    Yesterday a local Ashtanga teacher was teaching the yoga club, which I have other scheduled activities during, and they were outside. As I walked past and observed him adjusting students in pashimotanasana a kid walked up to me and said, “All the benefits of yoga are a sham”. So I asked what he meant. He said that only lonely people benefit from yoga and they only benefit from being part of a group. So I mentioned that my practice was alone, in a room in my house surrounded by no one except houseplants…and it was hugely beneficial. He was confused, and said he didn’t know that you could do yoga alone. I then told him that if he was curious there was a Mysore studio in the Northeast part of the city. He left. While I do miss being part of a yoga community, I learn more about myself practicing alone, where I set the tempo of the practice by where my breath is today. And at home I can take a break to blow my nose and it’s not awkward.

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