Sunday, February 26, 2012

Come home, it's time...

I am getting on a plane to India tomorrow to go study and practice at the Shri K Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute in Mysore.  I have been having a lot of dreams leading up to this trip, dreamland visitations by people I will soon meet.  Mostly they are anonymous dream characters who give me an information download, but one night Sharath came to me as I was wrestling with the decision to go and the timing of my trip.  He had a very light, joyful, playful energy, at the same time commanding my unwavering respect and trust.  He told me very clearly, "Come home, it's time."  Well ok, then!  

When I originally started planning this journey, my intent was to go to deepen my practice.  Something has shifted though in my practice to allow me to see the depth of the work there, and now I feel like I'm going to heal something within myself, first and foremost.  The practice has become such a deeply devotional activity for me, that I have no attachment to what asanas I may be given, or whether or not I'll get the bind in supta kurmasana once and for all, or if I'll start second series.  I only care about any of that insofar as it supports the spiritual dimension of the practice.  The asanas create gateways to the inner work.  They show me where to look, where my fears and suffering hide, where my weaknesses and vulnerability are, where I need to pay attention more closely, where I need to push myself harder, and where I need to let go.

I want to practice in that room with people from the world over, where the roots of the lineage have grown deep through the generations, where the spirit and history is palpable with every ekam inhale.  I want to go deep into my own work, to push my edges, to sweat and burn through the things that no longer serve me, to heal old wounds and discover things I don't yet know about myself.  I want to taste my capacity for joy and sorrow and suffering and courage.  I want to confront my fears and pain and know the source of my own strength.  I want to walk to that edge, to see my limitations, and then go a little further to see what I'm made of just beyond the present horizon.  I feel like my whole life has led up to this.  In many ways, it feels like I'm preparing for battle, like I'm about to step right into the fire.  And I'm ready for whatever is in store for me.  I am, afterall, about to be practicing under the sway of Durga who slayed the demon Mahishasura in the Chamundi hills on the outskirts of Mysore.  My recent experiences in backbending (which Kino mentions at the end of her recent article) have given me a look into the depths of what is there and how much work there is to be done.  After a couple of weeks of almost daily full body sobbing after practice, I've had several days of respite from the emotional purging.  A lot of joy and laughter have been bubbling to the surface, even in the midst of the somewhat stressful hustle to get ready to leave the country.  I feel like I'm peering over the edge of a rabbit hole, about to dive in.  I am ready to surrender to the current, wherever it takes me, whatever painful or blissful or beautiful or ugly places it has to show me within myself.  I'm willing to do the work required of me, to confront whatever demons need slaying and to bow down at the feet of gods, trusting completely in the unfolding.  I feel held and supported and blessed by my amazingly awesome friends, my teachers, the community, and something so much bigger than me, something beyond my wildest dreams.  I am filled to the brim with gratitude and a deep sense of trust as I venture forth on my journey...

Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers
but to be fearless in facing them.
Let me not beg for the stilling of my pain
but for the heart to conquer it.
Let me not look for allies in life's battlefield
but to my own strength.
Let me not crave in anxious fear to be saved
 but hope for the patience to win my freedom.


  1. I love you girl! So with you.

  2. You're writing is beautiful! I hope you have a lot of fun in Mysore. Can't wait to hear about it :)

  3. I just discovered you blog and just love it! My thoughts have recently been turning to Mysore and thoughts of making this journey myself. I look forward to reading about your experience and making plans for mine.

  4. Courageous! Your writing indicates that you are totally ready to take it to the next level (whatever that is!) so: Congratulations! Best wishes for you on your path. Your intention will bear fruit, is my prediction :)

    Not really a yogi, but I think namaste is the right thing to say here, so, Namaste!
    Justin from Austin