“I go to yoga, so I don’t think.” 😅
I was talking to a colleague the other day. We were at work, and she was getting ready to take off and go to yoga. She knows I’m a yoga teacher, but she doesn't know how competent and well experienced I'm though. However, I asked her what style she was going to practice; she replied “ Vinyasa, hot ... I need tough stuff, so I don’t think”. This answer got me a bit by surprise, but I kept my cool. I’m not judging people; we all do the things we want to do for the reasons we want. However, her answer made me think.
My question to my self is: "Is not yoga a practice to help us think? Meaning, it shouldn’t help us to become more aware and present, so maybe the thinking or better the over thinking mechanism gets balanced, and we might be able to process our thoughts with more lightness? Based on my experience with yoga, my answer would be yes to this question, but I didn't feel fully satisfied with my reasoning :-)
Then yesterday morning I saw on my newsfeed a post from a Fb friend Owen P., who posted a quote from Sadhguru “The going within is not a direction, it is a dimension.”
Here we go, I got my full answer, thank you, Owen :)
Who takes my classes knows that the first thing I do even before starting anything else is to invite students to gather the focus to their hearts and turn the attention within bringing in all that makes us distracted and not present.
In my experience, practicing yoga is a possibility to sync with your dimension within. When we turn within, we expand our sense of space and time, and both cease to exist as we can conceive them in the outer world to which they belong.
When we enter the dimension within, our limitations of space and time expand, and a new perspective can emerge allowing to access a different way to look at our thoughts, which may appear not as overwhelming as they would on regular mental activity.
Therefore, I believe Yoga is that practice which can help you to connect to the dimension within to expand the limitation of space and time and help you process your thoughts. Within this dimension, your sense of presence is enhanced by your five senses, and it is more like you are watching a movie in your mind instead of just thinking.
Connecting to this "dimension within" is one of the reasons someone came up with this yoga practice thousands of years ago.
Since space and time do not belong to the dimension within, we find ourselves not attached to our thinking when we are in that expanded state of mind, which we call consciousness. Our thoughts become more scenes on a big movie screen that we observe as witnesses. In this state of mind, we become observers of our minds, and when we observe instead of participating actively with a mental activity such as thinking is, we automatically let go on what it is not needed. If this is done, your yoga class will be more than just a moment to shut the world out; it will be an excellent opportunity to change your life inside out.
I dedicate my work as a yoga teacher to bringing people within, and this is the only reason I keep teaching. Without connecting to that intimate space within us, which is the bridge between your daily "you" and your real you, there is no awareness in our life; there is not freedom and even less healing.
We can go to yoga for whatever reason we want, but, if we do not apply more than just the physical body, the problems which confront us every day, remain unsolved. After the effects of the yoga class pass, you are back to the starting point where your thinking is a never slowing down activity that makes you trapped in your mind, which is not a reality and you will not be living in your presence, (and I mean presence and not present). You will be pushed around by your thoughts and the ideas about how things should be, based on your irrational thinking, fear, and anxiety. This state of constant worries is not living in your presence.
Living life through your mind projections would be a life in prison. Living a life in which you reside in your heart with awareness would be a life in freedom.
Our choice as always, but I would invite you to find a yoga teacher that teaches you to be in your presence and connection with your dimension within. When you see a teacher that has no fear to bring you in and help you to set yourself free, you will know you are in the presence of a great deal in town :-)
Thoughts by Simona Dharma Devi