Why Yoga?

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Last weekend someone asked me why and how yoga is known as a spiritual practice. I guess I’ve never been so directly asked that question so I was surprised to hear it. In my head I answered…”How could it be anything but a spiritual practice?” It was hard for me to understand his point of view at first. This is because yoga has been the strongest, most connecting spiritual practice for me that I’ve ever encountered—and that is saying a lot. Growing up I went to christian summer camps every summer, attended church, studied the bible with my father and many others, and last but not least was counseled by multiple psychologists and counselors, for various reasons. Nothing has ever helped me to become a stronger me and to connect me with the universe and all that it has to offer me as much as yoga has. These are reasons I practice every day. In the chaos of life, I can always return to my mat, at any place at any time, and it is always the same consistent and uplifting flow of asanas (poses). My yoga instructor calls it “our open-eye meditation”, because that’s what it is.  I have grown to learn to focus on my breath, hold a meditative gaze and to really turn off that inner voice that doubts, overanalyzes, and psychs us out–daily. Yoga has diminished my anxiety in a HUGE way, and it has strengthened my body inside and out. The big thing with yoga (for me) is that you can learn so much on your mat, in class or at your home practice and then take those feelings and those strengths out into the world in your every day life. It really is hard to explain but I feel so passionately about it that I feel I need to try and share with others! Yoga has made me more patient, with myself and with others. My practice has allowed me to understand that here and now is the MOST important thing, and how to turn off the negative influences and really meditate. Change your thoughts and you change your world, you may have heard before—and it is SO true. It’s really crazy how such small decisions can change your perception of life. If you don’t want to feel a certain way—change your mind! Your mind has the power to overcome SO much…mind over matter. We have that power for ourselves to choose how we want to feel! Nothing has taught me this more than yoga has. I feel so grateful every day to be involved in the yoga community that I am involved in and to have grown so much over the years with the help of my practice and my peers. If you’d like to come practice with me, anytime please let me know. If yoga isn’t your thing, there are many other ways to view certain experiences as spiritual and to connect deeper to yourself. Your body is your vessel, and we can be brought to a different level of happiness and consciousness by finding gratitude for simple every day things. If yoga isn’t your thing, these kind of connections can be found throughout nature as well, or through anything that you thoroughly enjoy doing. The universe is providing you with that joy so the goal is to accept and love the present moment. Find spiritual thanks through a different perspective and see how it may be beneficial to your life.

Namaste and much love angels,

Madelene

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