30 Days of Yogi Wisdom – Day 27 featuring Sri Aurobindo
“In the right view both of life and of Yoga, all life is either consciously or subconsciously a Yoga.”
Let’s be real. There are about a thousand different definitions of yoga. I found that when I first started learning more about yoga, like when I discovered there was more to yoga than just the asanas, it became clear that yoga was occurring not just during the designated 3 hours a week I had scheduled it for. Yoga didn’t start at 9:15 am and run until 10:30 am. Instead it lingered with me as I made decisions throughout my day and as I had interactions with people in my life. I could practice treating my mom on the phone with compassion the same way I compassionately took care of an injury during my Ashtanga practice. I could pause before arguing with my hubby the same way I paused before deciding to go deeper into a posture or not. Ultimately, yoga has the power to intervene in every aspect of our days and nights whether we are fully aware of it or not.
Sri Aurobindo’s quote reminds me how much of a microcosm our yoga mats are to the macrocosm that is our lives. Often how we react to situations, like challenges, on our mats is exactly how we react to situations in our day to day lives. The yoga that we do in studios and classrooms essentially prepares us for the yoga we do out and about in the world.
As Sri Aurobindo points out, we may be conscious of the yoga we practice when we’re taking a class specifically called ‘yoga’. But when that class is over, the yoga that we practice out in the world may be more subconscious in nature. Nevertheless, the practice of yoga that we do when we’re fully aware, gives us the opportunity to practice the yoga we do when we’re not fully aware. The more we practice, the more awareness we’ll cultivate and the more yoga we’ll be doing consciously both on and off our mats rather than subconsciously.
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