I’ve said it before and I can’t help repeating it now – I cannot believe how far how quickly my practice is coming since I’ve gone daily. I think we must be taking a step back when we skip a day – so it’s two steps forward one step back. When I’m on the mat daily, I may only be practicing twice as often – but I’m pretty sure I’m progressing more than twice as fast because I’m not regressing in between.
My other key tactic for staying on track is to stay well within my limit; I’m not pushing myself too far – and I’ve taken Chakrasana out altogether because I’ve never done it without screwing up my neck. The last thing I need is for an injury to lay me off for 3 or 4 days. Bad habits seem easy to form (or revert to) – the samskara of not practicing is deep and strong in this one. And I fear that a 4 day lay-off would turn into something longer.
You may recall that last Monday was the first day I truly skipped since April – since then, every morning, the thought of skipping briefly enters my mind. Will I ever not feel like skipping – will it ever be that I’ll be compelled to go to my mat as naturally each morning as I am compelled to brush my teeth or shower? Maybe.
Today’s practice was a good one. Up at 5:20, I lay in bed waiting for sky to brighten a little. I got out at 6:15 and enjoyed a wonderful practice (but not before thinking briefly of skipping). I’m noticing subtle new capabilities each day.
I am beginning to miss studio practice though – the last time I practiced in a group was November. It’s not the motivation – I’m confident that I’ll always overcome the tendency to skip. But I’m missing the energy, companionship, and camaraderie that practicing with a group brings. And the adjustments – I’ll need adjusting soon if I’m going to take it up to the next level.
I enjoyed mixing with my fellow travellers at the Yoga Show and Conference here in Toronto last November. At such gatherings there are so many of us that we forget that in actual fact we are so few…and the vast mass of people do not have time for Patanjali and would walk right by Guruji if they should run into him on street. Come to think of it, he’d look incongruous even in multicultural Toronto and they’d probably offer a curious glance…but they still wouldn’t know who he was.
I attended a reading of the Yoga Sutras at that Yoga Show (led by that bete noire of the Mysore tradition, Ms. ‘Power’ Yoga, herself – BBB). She was ok actually, and I was heartened to see so many young people who’d come from far a field. People read various interpretations of selected Sutras and they listened intently, nodding and smiling knowingly at what was so evidently true wisdom. And you know what? It sounds goofy but you felt there was hope for the World. It wouldn’t be so bad to feel that vibe regularly from my fellow travellers. Or maybe it’s just the eye candy I’m missing – so much for driste.