As we were winding down for the academic year in April, I was looking forward to leisurely practice and perhaps even blogging about it like I did last year but life had some very different plans. I ended up teaching a few classes, practising with a couple of others a few times but the bigger chunk of my time was spent on home and hearth in unexpected ways. The highlight has been a separate pranayama practice. Fledgling. But quite fascinating. Always something different. 

May has been interesting to observe from an off the mat perspective. There have been layers and nuances of heaviness but the steadfastness of yoga kept things on an even keel. I’ve accomplished more… it seems odd to say I’ve accomplished when it has really been more of a coming together of things in the mysterious and effortless ways of the universe. My work was simply showing up which I did but all the rest just happened. 

I missed the break of a holiday month but also can’t wait for June and another academic year. The schedule will get a bit more packed but it is a gift to be able to spend so much time steeped in study and service. 

Reading has been mostly single chapters that are complete in themselves from Astadala Yogamala or then Yog Sarvansathi. My Marathi is getting better as I attempt some translation as well to make sense of the chapters. The class I teach needs me to instruct in Hindi as well as English and it makes for a lot of smiles at my funny sounding Hindi. The folks there are happy to provide translation for words I may not know. I remember Guruji had written or mentioned somewhere how difficult it was to find the right words in a language alien to him. It gave me pause at that time. Here was a young boy who spoke Kannada and Tamil and had to quickly get proficient in Marathi, English and Hindi. He went on to write so many books in an acquired language. It would be interesting to hear him speak in Kannada, teach in Kannada. The vernacular in India is rich and makes the rendering of so many things multihued. 

The language of one’s living changes the longer one spends in yoga and I don’t mean simply an asana practice. The shift is so gradual that one doesn’t realize when things are no longer the same. Daily living changes, fellowship happens, study takes on deeper involvement. I can now appreciate better the karma, jnana, bhakti progression that is a direct result of abhyasa. In some respects, it is strange, this sense of devotion I feel while not being religious. It is piggybacking on one man’s sadhana and that has been more than sufficient to keep this sadhaka going.


8 thoughts on “May

  1. I am so happy that you are blogging again. I think that this having time “off” for your rigorous course of study to become embodied will be evident when you return to your work at the Institute. I always assumed that you were able to communicate in the languages spoken at the Institute and were a devout Hindu. For us Westerners, there is so much that is outside of our wheelhouse that we must make up for lost ground both linguistically and culturally. Your effort seems effortless.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I do communicate in multiple languages just that my accent is atrocious. It is a nice icebreaker though. 🙂 Everyone has a good laugh and it makes all of us feel good.
      I grew up in a Christian household and married into an orthodox Brahmin family but didn’t really end up in either camp. Both ways of life talk about the same yamas and niyamas so Patanjali is a more comfortable secular ground.

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  2. I agree with your observations. I am Jewish, but I see no difference in my view of our Creator and what I’m learning in my yoga studies. In fact, each day I’m more aware of the divinity that created us all, from scorpions to gurus.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think that Yoga is a place where we can all come together. It’s the place where the mystics sit. The place that no words can describe. It offers such hope in a fractured world…

      Liked by 1 person

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