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SEE THE ART IN EVERYTHING, EVERYWHERE, AND IN EVERYONE.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

ART OF MY SOUL DAY 6: THE REAL RULES FOR FINDING THE ART IN HOT YOGA (AN INFORMAL GUIDE)

First let me tell you what bikram yoga is NOT about.  It's not about finding the cutest yoga pants with matching yoga mat and tote.  However, I do recommend an extra absorbent headband for hot yoga.  Nothing breaks concentration and focus like a feeble attempt at balancing the inevitable bead of sweat gathered on your eye lash.  It's like a staring contest with yourself.  First one to blink not only loses but usually wobbles out of the pose they worked so hard to nail.  Winners wear headbands...(wink).   

Think baby steps...
You're probably wondering how there can possibly be any Art in the sweaty mess that is hot yoga...???!


I wondered the same.  After reflecting in my surprisingly clear yet soggy state of nylon and spandex THE REAL RULES FOR FINDING THE ART IN HOT YOGA (AN INFORMAL GUIDE) began to emerge.  Sometimes, the words "rules" and "art" don't always blend well.  This is not one of those times.  Before you set out to find the Art in yoga, try following these rules:   

The Rule of Acceptance leads to the Art of Appreciation.
Once I accepted my body and its ability in any given moment I began to see and feel it move in ways beyond my notions of flexibility.  I stayed present and focused on what I was doing as opposed to comparing myself to others' abilities.  Opening the door of Acceptance opened a window into Appreciation. When you truly accept what you're working with, you can appreciate what may seem like the tiniest moments of progress.

The Rule of Surrender leads to the Art of Access.
Something weird began to happen as I went from pose to pose during class.  I found myself surrendering to the seduction of synchronicity. Remember that scene in Avatar when all of the blue people sat on the ground around the enchanted tree, locked ponytails and swayed side to side in a rhythmic trance?  When all of the individuals in class do the breathing, balancing and posing together on the same beat an energy is generated that actually propels me.  It's as if my muscles have access to the muscle memory of all present.  I call this "collective yogic consciousness."  Besides the opportunity to catch a cool breeze when the door opens; standing in the back row allows me to see our movement as one. 

The Rule of Alignment leads to the Art (and gift) of Oneness.
Perhaps, one of the most artful experiences I've had thus far in my bikram practice is the allure of alignment.  When my mind, body, and spirit are all working together to achieve maximum flexibility, focus and awareness; there is an inner sense of peace that washes over me.  This type of peace can only manifest in the space of alignment where mind, body and spirit act as one.  Every time I say yes to a hot yoga session, I say yes to the gift of oneness.  Trust me, it's a gift you will never get tired of opening!

What real rules have you discovered that led to the unfolding of Art in your life?  


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