I just finished taking David Kyle’s final class of the weekend. It was a handstand workshop held at Stroga in Adams Morgan.
When I sat down to ask myself what to write in this final day of the 2nd week of continuous writing throughout 2014, I was stumped. I just finished a hand standing workshop with literally my favorite yoga teacher in the world who specializes in hand standing.
No brainer, right?
Gush about how awesome the class was and how
great modest you are. Duh. That’s why people take (and/or) talk about their yoga experiences right? The pose is a reflection of the practice which is a reflection of the person. Better pose, harder pose, better person…
No brainer, right?
That’s absolutely wrong.
Yet we boast all of the time. The clash of social media’s obnoxious flash-bang effect on the peaceful, internal world that yogi’s strive to connect with makes me shudder at times. This feeling of disconnect does not arise because I know yogi’s with (tens of) thousands of followers (many more than I) on Instagram and question their dedication to the practice. The feeling doesn’t come out of an observation of anything in anyone else’s particular mode of expression be it via Instagram, Facebook, or Elephant Journal.
The feeling arose when I
made myself sit down and asked myself what to write.
My own relationship with social media, and society, has always been a strange one. Before Facebook crept into my focus in high school I didn’t know much about the way things worked in other peoples lives. As time went on and my exposure to the world in front of, and away from, inevitable screens opened my view to perspectives I wanted to emulate and shun various lifestyles, ideas, and decisions all at once.
While creating this seemingly perfect
totally made up persona for hundreds of people I didn’t know, I found voices from places within myself I had as of yet dared to experience. I was taken places with my yoga that I had never, ever been thanks to sharing my experience with those people I never knew would see. And as I sat down to write this piece my go to answer, after years of social structuring was total fluff.
It’s funny how yoga exposes the opposites inherent in life.
As my “experience” with yoga has increased, my exposure and exposition of poses has followed. I realize that gaining the attention of those who looked on to my websites immobilized me. I began to feed the beast what it wanted. Inversions, quotes, and backbends for the people that wanted them became my display as my true voice got smaller and smaller. I created a pattern for myself, that I had already subconsciously become aware of, causing me to ask myself twice about why I was writing in the first place.
"Well why do you do yoga?"
Early on in my career it was for that attention. It was for the gaze of the students in led primary class at Yoga District. It was for the adjustment a teacher would give after attempting a pose that most others wouldn’t come near. It was for the pain of the pose.
It was for ego.
And as I dove in more and more and more, it became less about the poses. more about what they weren’t saying. I began to do yoga to escape my ego.
To beat it.
And that is why I will write.
I want to share things with people from a perspective that they can relate to. I want to make this thing called yoga understandable and translatable for situations that arise in life. It has taught me so much and will serve to do the same for those that yield to it, no matter the path they take.
So you yogi’s that post, by all means! Go ahead and post your heart away. But, when you find that the posting outweighs the yoga, and the purpose of practice is lost, maybe ask yourself why you do the practice in the first place. I know it always brings me back to a place I lose sight of when my ego begins barking orders. And with a practice people say is
great, that barking can be quite distracting.