|Posted by Lisa on May 1, 2021 at 12:50 AM|
The incredibly rich offering of yoga in all of it’s depth and ancientness comes from India where the Vedas or books of wisdom were born.
Yoga is considered a way of seeing the world or a dārṣana which encompasses much more than a philosophy in my opinion, it’s a way of life. The practices that have funneled into modern yoga which are actually ancient are ritual, mantra recitation, meditation and spiritual study.
Proof of āsana or postures don’t come along until the Haṭha Yoga Pradipika in the 14th century. Previous to this Patañjali mentions āsana in The Yoga Sutra where it means “seat” and to find one that is both steady and comfortable…so that you can sit for meditation and ultimately samadhi, realization of your highest self.
These practices have ultimately become my passion to practice and to share as a yoga teacher.
These practices keep me centered throughout my day. They bring me back to the present moment when I want to stew in the past or worry about the future. The practices allow me access to a power and confidence from within, a radiance that is palpable. Physically, I feel more open, fluid and strong in my body.
I hope to share all of these benefits with people who work with me through Sanskrit, mantra and movement.
I have gained so much from these practices and I feel that I have to acknowledge the lineage of where these practices come from and honor that in my teachings.
I also must honor that especially when the country of India is suffering so much right now from COVID. It is a devastating situation and I ask you all to join with me to help.
In fact, this is part of yoga practice.
In the Yoga Sutra, Patañjali outlines something called Aṣtaṇga Yoga. This is the 8 limbed path that will lead you to the state of liberation as I mentioned above. The very basis of these steps he details something called the yamas and the niyamas. These are the spiritual & moral principals that uphold the path of yoga.
Today I want to speak of one of these and it’s called “asteya.” Asteya can be translated as non-stealing. (Think “Though Shall Not Steal” from the 10 commandments of Christianity, in fact, there are similarities between these 10 yamas and niyamas!)
The positive way to access this teaching would be as “giving.” This outlines an action that you can take, to become a conduit for giving of yourself, your time, resources or ideas for the greater good.
In fact, Nikki Meyers from the Yoga of 12 Step Recovery likes to say “You can’t keep it if you don’t give it away.
I used care.org and found an emergency relief fund for India. You could also organize a beneifit concert or a benefit yoga class. There are so many ways to be of service for India and it's people.
I see the word, asteya, with both meanings as I reflect on how to act for the good of India.
Not stealing and giving back have a relationship. We take from the suits of the earth and need to give back to replenish it, we need to care for it. In the same way, we take from the fruits of yoga, we need to give back to where it originated.
Hari Om Tat Sat