What is Yoga 308

Life is a constant struggle of balancing our body on both a physical and emotional side. Through yoga I have learned several life lessons. Yoga 308 is a goal I set for myself to do at least 60 minutes of yoga for 6 days a week for the next year. I invite anyone to join me on this adventure as I blog about some of my daily experiences. This is not intended to show that I have found peace and tranquility, but rather give my honest feelings of my journey. Enjoy.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Day 260 - Fear of yoga

Today I found a Mysore Class at the Yoga Shala in Orando.  This was a new studio and class for me.  It was lead by Maureen Hanusek.  It was a great class.

Yoga is a lifestyle.  You can participate in yoga both on and off the mat.  There are many teachings that it brings to your life.  Religions fear it because it brings self awareness and self guidance.  They feel as if it steers people away from practicing what they deem proper ways to pray towards god.  In reality yoga enhances your religious belief.  There is no time during yoga where we pray to Jesus, God, Buddha, or Allah.  It is a spiritual uplifting and powerful practice that enhances your beliefs structure.

If you believe in Jesus you leave with a stronger belief of Jesus.  If you are Buddhist you embrace the teachings of the Buddha.  If you are Atheist you will stay a nonbeliever.  If you are in fact a believer in god, yoga will bring you closer to god.

In my yoga practitice I have become a much more healthy individual.  I am eating better and with more compassion.  I am finding ways to give back to the community.  I weigh the same as I did in High School.  My emotions are more balanced.  I am able to surround myself with good people who think like me.  The benefits that come with yoga keep coming and coming.  Every religion or non religion would look at these as positive characteristic improvements towards any individual.

Religiously, I would call myself a Buddhist.  I keep my mind and heart open to all religions, but this is the religion that I hold closest to me.  In practicing yoga I have not grown my Buddhist belief.  In fact while writing this I realize how much I would like to dive deeper into my religion.  This however is done outside my yoga practice.  My yoga has helped me realize such things as compassion towards others, gratitude towards life, and the ability to deal with stress.  Again, these characteristics would help me become a better Buddhist.  It would also help me become a better Catholic, Jew, or Muslim.

Some people fear the chants that are done at the beginning of the class.  When I first started yoga I refused to participate in chanting.  I did not understand what the foreign language meant.  I did not want to say things in which I had no idea what was coming out of my mouth.  For all I knew I could have been chanting "I worship the devil!"  So I refused.  As I looked further into the chanting, I realized that it is mostly giving thanks to the teachers that taught yoga before our time.  The chant of Om is harmonious way to connect the body with the rest of the people in the room and the universe.  It actually makes me feel really good when I do it.  The word Namaste is as simple as hello and goodbye.  It is a simple word stating that we acknowledge that we are all connected in this universe.

Yoga is such a beneficial thing on all levels... Body, mind, and soul.  It brings you closer to who you really are.  If you fear change and you fear yoga, then you probably will not attend a class.  In reality it is still teaching you how fearful you are as a person.  Do not fear the things that are different, but rather embrace them and look to learn from them.  It will bring more gratitude into your life.