Honest Reflections of a Yogi

November 17, 2014

Awaken!Peel off the color of our flesh, the roundness of our hips, the price of our uncomfortable jeans, and at our core, all of us want the same thing – to feel loved. Yogis, investment bankers, even backpacking lone wanderers all seek an intimate connection; they – we – all want to feel understood. We are all humans, and biologically we need community to thrive, and usually, to survive. Sometimes that means dressing alike – the people around me tend to have a tendency for piercings and hating pants with buttons. Sometimes that means sharing similar vocabularies – dude, I’m so grateful for the sacred energy we’re transcending on this journey right now. Sometimes it means sharing priorities – Samadhi? 100K followers on Instagram? Getting both legs behind your head? Sometimes it doesn’t mean any of these things. Sometimes connection means one heart vibrating at the same rhythm as someone else’s. Sometimes, what appears on the outside as a “community” is just that – an appearance from the outside. They may look, talk, and maybe even act the same – but what about the intentions behind those actions? What about that real, almost physically tangible, force that makes a conversation, a hug, or an exchanged smile between two people so powerful? As long as we remember what’s underneath those jump-through sculpted abs/cupcake repository – it doesn’t matter. This past weekend I lead a community class at the Yoga Journal Conference. I was probably the youngest presenter of the conference, and without checking anyone’s bio, I was without a doubt the most inexperienced. I was supposed to be teaching a class on something I thought I knew very little about, as it wasn’t meant to be anything asana-related. I woke up like 7 times the night before I was meant to teach. I didn’t eat breakfast because my anxiety was filling enough. I’ve only been teaching yoga for about a year, and I had never taught a class like the one I was about to lead. What if no one chanted with me? What if I was left shaking and twisting and dancing all by myself? What if I was made a fool in front of people who had years of practice on me? It turns out I knew exactly what I was doing. It turns out that I may not be a yoga expert just yet, but I certainly have a solid 23-year old practice of what I shared this weekend - seeing the smiles and bodies of so many new brothers and sisters moving to their breath, to the music, and to my voice. It took the reflection of a community I had just entered to teach me that, in that circle of 45-minute connection. It took people in my soul community, like Joaquin de Teresa http://www.boomyoga.com , to trust in me and believe in me strong enough to provide me with such a space that would force the truest me to come out of myself – he had met that part of me before I had. We can’t exist without one another. Whatever community you belong to, supporting someone is supporting everyone. Who am I if not you? Who are we if not each other? I still feel a familiar tickle in my belly right before I settle every one down for class, but the moment I speak my first word, from that very same spot, comes a deep and warm power much stronger than anything I should ever let my ego stand in the way of. And sometimes I do. For me, it’s a constant practice. Sometimes I reign myself in, fearing that transmitting everything I have will be far too much for anyone to handle. But in those true vulnerable moments, the ones where I may have my students shaking their bodies, but really it is me who’s shaking inside – that’s when I feel that intimate, surging, and electrifying connection. That’s when the little hormone that controls so much of what we do comes into full existence - rooted at my belly, its petals shooting out the top of my head. That’s when I feel my community – because it lives inside me and radiates out, touching everyone around me. That’s when I feel you – because it lives inside you and radiates out, touching everyone around you. That’s when we feel each other – because it lives inside us and radiates out, touching everyone around us. Wipe each other’s tears, give someone a smile, play with their hair. I promise your cells will feel like fresh lemon juice was poured all over them, and it won’t matter to you a single bit how close their foot comes to their forehead in Sirsa Padasana. I have a long way to go on this journey, but I am truly grateful for the sacred energy that has somehow bound us all together (see? My vocabulary can’t help it). Let’s hold each other up. Let’s collaborate and get over competition. Let’s be community. Support organic cotton and our beautiful earth. Support local business owners and a local family. Check out YOGiiZA and support their mission to be in community with each other, the planet, and ourselves. Blog post written by: Yogi Arielle Egozi   https://www.facebook.com/arielle.egozi

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