29 May 2006

Yoga Envy

So I've been reading Patanjali's Yoga Sutra, as translated by Barbara Stoler Miller. So I'm in the deep end, I'm thinking I'm swimming to enlightenment. I'm groovin' on stuff like:

"Yoga is the cessation of the turnings of thought. When thought ceases, the spirit stands in its true identity as observer the world."

And then my class at Corepower shot all that high-falutin' thinkin' all to hell. Took me down a proper notch or two. I show up for class without a mat, without a towel, without anything but my clothes. So I figure, I'll rent a mat. Forget to rent a towel. Corepower is a form of hot yoga except they make you do all kinds of ab work in the middle of the class.

At a certain point my eyes were stinging from sweat, my feet were sliding all over the mat as I was posing in a puddle of my own making, and I was watching a woman do amazing poses and hating her for it as I slipped out of a pose yet again. I thought - "She's showing off, I hate that." And then I realized that I, the one day scholar of Patanjali, had YOGA ENVY!! That's a sad thing to admit, I know, but there it is. I wanted to be the best yogi in the class, I wanted people to look at me (please ignore my earlier post about yoga being about doing your best, not being the best, I obviously don't read myself)and admire my asana. ME ME ME.

So there was clearly no "cessation of the turnings of thought" nor was my spirit standing in "its true identity as observer of the world."

I'll keep working on that.



Alyson Wilson said...

Ah ha, so the puddle you created and were drowning in was metaphysical as well! LOL.
Thanks for the great, honest post!
-Alyson, thisnext.com/blog

Lesley said...

haha...what a funny post.

For me, I never did get into yoga envy. When I see a person able to do a pose that i cannot do, I will be inspired instead. I will go "wow" or "cool...", that's beautiful and I am going to do that when I am ready.

So far it has been working for me! ( okok... except my headstand, hehe )

Great blog you have here, Richard. :)

Be Inspired!