Day 201 – One of my favorite Rumi poems goes something like this: “A human being is essentially a spirit-eye./Whatever you really see, you are that.” This weekend’s reading was just so. As we practice yoga, Rolf retells our process at refining our view, writing: “We come to see that a minor shift in the attitude of our big toes dramatically alters our experience of the posture.”
From this, we hopefully come to see that “as our body awareness grows, our postures become an embodiment of nonviolence, an expression of faith, compassion, honesty.” Rolf calls this the central theme of asana, which certainly many people miss, including me, practicing for the art of practicing, whether the casual yoga person or the one who practices with abandonment. Asana, he writes, teaches us to “extend love impartially,” on and off the mat.
The first step is extending love to myself, so I practiced restorative yoga today. Rolf’s reading goes further in this, however, writing: “If this lesson does not carry over into the rest of our relationships, nothing of any lasting value will have been gained.” And, so, the impartial love must also carry forth off the mat, from our heart to others. I wish that I could have told my 17 year old self this, but that is another reading and reflection all of its own.