Being on fire and keeping it alive

I am still in awe. In awe of yoga virgins and how their first class and body experience blow their mind. Do you remember your first impressions of your body and mind after your first yoga session? I certainly do. I could not lift my foot to step off the street back on the pavement. At the time I lived in the old east part of  Berlin with high sidewalks. My rebel self saw this as an incentive to keep going. I wasn’t going to give up until it would feel as light as possible to come out of a yoga class. – Little did I know that there always be new challenges on the way. They are not as visible these days, but they are like high sidewalks to me and my inner body.

Then there was my first teacher who said. ‘Now don’t come back until you did your first home practice.’  I looooved my yoga classes, and I wasn’t going to be told to stay away – so I found myself a book and started to try out familiar but straightforward postures at home.

That was the start of my self-practice. Five years later I had the good fortune to meet a yoga teacher who not only cared about my physical practice but about giving my movements a foundation that is steeped in wisdom, not to be confused with knowledge from books. But to gain wisdom you have to start reading books and apply the ‘code of conduct’ until it becomes apparent to your subconscious self.

So from that day on my library grew. My interest grew, and my subtle inner body developed. That was my path. As for yourself, I am sure you are already getting excellent support through all the yoga-online -platforms, books and drop-in classes for your physical practice. But is this feeding your fire? Are you stoking your yoga awareness with more than merely your body and maybe some talks or books?

Let me come back to my remark on learning the code of conduct. What do I mean?! What has it got to do with your fire? By the code of conduct, I mean waking up to your mental, emotional, and ‘digestive’ body. Imagine you just finished a brilliant practice and you feel in the centre of yourself.

Next thing you open your emails and you are swamped with work. It spirals you into action and what was once your centre becomes the pull into the WWW. Within minutes you are out of your body and deeply engaged in producing, or interactions with other people. You might forget that you meant to have a real lunch or dinner and you eat just the next best thing.

How to address these things? You don’t want to roll out the mat again. So what does the ancient wisdom of yoga advice? That’s what I mean by Code of Conduct. This advice will tend to your inner fire. And when your fire gets stronger, your boundaries are more apparent and to do things in the right order. Get where I am going?

 

Without having to read the books, I am going to give you a simple tip that will lead you to step your first steps into wisdom:

  • keep it simple
  • have solid routines where you can have them in eating, sleeping and practicing
  • have some fun and break out of the habit without falling off the wagon
  • don’t eat 4 hours before a long practice
  • don’t eat from 7 pm to 9 am
  • drink only water before your morning practice
  • sit and do nothing for 1-2 minutes a day
  • journal