By life practice I mean an ongoing inquiry into how to be completely engaged and intimate with the wild force that runs through everything and is running through us, if we would pause long enough to notice. A life practice, then, is anything that we do over an extended period of time that consistently and reliably deepens our connection to our experience and expression of aliveness. ~Donna Farhi
I came across this passage from Donna Farhi during the week of April that the sun had finally burst forth from the wintry grey and it seemed that all of Seattle was exploding with aliveness. From the tulips to the magnolia trees, to the crowded parks and busy bike lanes, everywhere I looked it seemed that life was celebrating in full color and full bloom.
It is days like these that I so appreciate how nature makes me feel more alive and more connected to everything. Farhi points out that our life practice, which can be our yoga practice or anything else that we do mindfully and consistently does the same thing, it deepens our connection to our aliveness.
In yoga, for most of us, we come to our mats with a head full of stuff, details, conversations, plans, concerns, expectations, and regrets. Our body arrives with its tensions and fatigue, stresses or ease, injury or illness. And here, yoga invites us to breathe. To notice what is there, to become acquainted with all of our self, and begin to soften. As we move mindfully and breathe deeply the mind begins to slow down. Our body receives the effects of the practice and at some point we can feel ourselves tap into something that is beyond the mind and body “stuff.” We feel our own life force pulsing through us, we feel a little more whole, and we experience our aliveness.
You know those moments when the sight of a beautiful tree or the song of a bird can snap you out of your busy haze and bring you right there, in the moment, totally present, in touch with LIFE? I’ve found that those moments have become more frequent and even sweeter because of yoga!
Before I had a yoga and meditation practice life was something that was happening to me. I was not really anchored to anything and I felt I was being blown around by ever changing thoughts, emotions and especially REACTIONS of my mind. The only world I knew was the one inside my head and frankly, it was often rather unpleasant.
Thankfully, I found my way to yoga and meditation. A place where I could slow down, feel deeply and become present, in a way I had never been before. With some effort, but also somewhat in spite of myself, yoga became a life practice. As Farhi notes, our practice (whatever it may be: painting, cooking, gardening, rock climbing, knitting, being with children) is something that requires consistency and time, and it rewards us by bringing us closer to the “wild force” that runs through everything. That is why to me yoga is both a discipline and a celebration. A way that no matter what might be happening in my head and in the world around me I can return to a deeper self, I can experience my own aliveness.
I invite you in this blooming month of May to come to your yoga practice, and become intimate with the wild force that is running through you. Tap into the pulse of life that is in and around you, experience your own aliveness and the aliveness of your Lila Community.
To support you in the celebration we have some exciting offering coming up in May and early June. For all of you athletes (runners, cyclists, tennis players, climbers, skiiers, golfers…), join Shana for our Yoga for Athletes Series – 6 Week Series starting 5/5. Join our beloved teaching duo, Laura and Beattie for their next Align/Adjust Extended Practice on Sun 5/13. Harness and steady the amazing energy within in Natalie’s The Energetic Body workshop coming on May 20th. And for all you mamas out there, celebrate your special day with your little ones in our Family Yoga class also on Mother’s Day 5/13. Finally we are very excited to announce our first Immersion Series, Rise and Shine with Shana Robbins begins June 4th, MWF mornings at 6:15-7:30am. Commit to 3 mornings a week for one month - transform your life!
We look forward to seeing you soon and celebrating life together!