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A sweet and poignant letter arrived in my inbox today and i believe its important to share. i hope you share this with all your peeps:)
I hope this message finds you and your family happy and healthy. D.C. is always pretty hot and miserable in the summer but his year it has been nice- I've been teaching a ton of classes outside and everybody, it seems, loves practicing yoga under the sun. Go figure
Wanted to share some thoughts I had after rereading the TT manual and how it relates to our yoga practice here in D.C. (and how I relate it to my classes.)
My classes are full of people with advanced degrees, lots of "education" and tons of As in school from kindergarten through grad school. They took classes in Math and Logic in High School, in critical reading and writing in college, and got PhDs in comparative studies. And now they have jobs at prestigious firms, on Capitol Hill, with NGOs of all types and they all work even harder now than they did in school. Any most are happy doing what they are doing.
But most also feel a little empty and drained at the end of the day. Exhausted, unhappy at the way they feel.
And so I ask, "how many of you took a class during High School called 'Patience'?" how many of you studied compassion in college? What percentage have a PhD in Forgiveness? not too many. Is it any wonder then that they are a bit empty? Exhausted? Unhappy?
We all learned that to be successful we had to think a certain way and it worked. But success does not always equal happiness. No one ever taught us how to be happy and so we try to use the same tools we learned in school to gain success in finding our happiness. But it seldom works that way.
And so we have to step out of the comfortable mindset of analysis and into a mindset of feeling. From one of criticism to one of acceptance.
Well, I think you see where I am going- letting students use the time we have in class to work the muscles of gratitude, patience, compassion, forgiveness.
And I have found it works and people willing to do the work. I almost never see students in my class straining or cursing themselves and I always see students going to child's pose when they are tired or out of breath. More importantly, they keep coming back even though I dont teach the so-called "advanced poses" whatever the hell that means.
So, thanks, Bryan. Again.