The Path To Bodhichitta

You start where you are, the practice will meet you there.

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Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Hello Old Nemesis!

I craved a class this evening. There was only one teensy 'problem'. Gary doesn't teach on Tuesday evenings. The advanced hatha class is led by Jenny, a tiny double-jointed woman whom I had never met but heard enough of to stay away from the class. Until today.

"Oh it's Jenny, is it?" The Healer looked a little concerned. "She likes teaching inversions."

I almost turned the car around.

"Just sit at the back and don't do it if you don't feel like it," she said reassuringly.

The class was packed. To my great relief there was one last spot at the very back. Jenny led us through a standing sequence which was challenging enough on its own without my ego berating me for choosing a class in which I had to sit out a few asanas. Then just when I was getting comfortable and starting to enjoy the pace, Jenny folds her mat into two and smiles, "Ok, we do headstand."

Now, I have not been part of a proper yoga class for close to a year. And since I call the shots during my home practice, I have avoided inversions for as long as...well, a year.

Jenny soared into a headstand and descended just as gracefully. The other students began pulling their mats towards the wall. I hesitated. Then I heard that little voice. Try, it said, that's the only way you'll really know.

So I arranged my limbs and proceeded to go upside down. And suddenly...there I was...upside down. It was one of the rare moments when this asana was almost effortless. Don't get attached, I told myself, just enjoy. And so I savoured the feeling of being in a pose that has long been a nemesis. I knew that I could very well come crashing down the next time and I would have to stop myself from getting attached to that too.

That got me thinking about a current work-related quandry. There will be days when I will soar and stay up there, and there will be days when I just can't get up there. So all I have to do is to honour either experience, detach myself from it and approach the next with openess.

Sounds perfect on paper. :)


Anonymous Angeline said...

I couldn't help laughing when I read your post today - only because I can so relate to it!

It's refreshing to be reminded about non-attachment to those little joyous 'woohoo' moments but also non-attachment to fear and the ego :)

May you continue to have those beautiful moments in your practice.

10:55 PM  
Blogger starlight said...

Angeline, my little headstand 'woohoo' tricked me into thinking i was also capable of a backbend 'woohoo'. big mistake. :(

6:47 AM  
Anonymous Angeline said...

I was reading Geeta Iyengar's "Yoga, A Gem for Women" the other day. And she wrote, "Yoga is a philosophy that equips one to attain poise and to face all vicissitudes of life as well as its joys with equanimity".

May you clear your slate of the woohoo and booboo moments - today will be another beautiful day for your practice, be it on or off the mat :)

Enjoy your weekend.

6:52 PM  

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