Opening to Life—truly opening to Life—requires opening our WHOLE self to every single moment. From our HEARTS.
Slowing down. Listening. Embracing whatever is within. A storm appears, so I’ll roll with that. Embracing that storm, settling into its eye and breathing deeply like a sleeping lioness. From the heart. The tender heart.
We are so afraid of opening. Opening requires softening, which goes against how we are conditioned to move through this world. And I’m going to say it: Men in particular are so afraid. To be tender, to feel, to be wrong, to let go and let in, to be with their feminine.
Opening is not supposed to be easy peasy lemon squeezy. It’s fucking hard. And it’s also not a part-time gig. It doesn’t happen on our time, with our mind at the control panel. It doesn’t happen when it’s convenient and easy. It doesn’t happen with a puffed up armored chest. It doesn’t happen with clenched fists. It doesn’t happen in the future or the past.
It happens, truly happens in the thickest of the thickest, hottest of the hottest, most painful of the painful, most uncomfortable of the uncomfortable. It happens when you are face-to-face with your greatest limitation at that moment, your greatest challenge, your greatest fear, doubt. And I’m not talking about the burn of your 999th push-up to prove something, own something, win something.
I’m talking about those moments that bump up against a closure. An emotional, mental, physical, spiritual closure. And you feel the intensity rising. Or you don't because you've numbed to it. Or maybe it was in full force from the get-go. And you are faced with a choice. How will you show up to this? How will you move through this? Because there’s no ‘getting over it.’ There’s only in and through.
So stop avoiding. Stop pretending. Stop closing.
I’ve been learning in Yoga practice with Sofia about what it means to Be Love. Not Do Love. Be Love. I’m learning this by getting out of my own way and feeling from my heart. Breathing deeply into whatever is up, whatever about ourselves we close to, and giving it away. As a gift.
The beauty of asana practice comes from what is releasing and transforming within. Sofia said this morning that we are capable of mastering every pose. And by mastering, that does not mean perfecting. It means outshining our greatest limitation so that the knots unravel, the nadis open, bones brighten, and we actually become Love-Light. With a big Phat YES.
Yes. There is an exactitude to each pose. There has to be. There is an aligning of the bones for a reason, which has everything to do with Opening. To Life. To Love. To Light. And to seeing what we are up to almost 24 hours a day that is keeping us from opening. If you ego-mind-emotion-muscle your way through practice, then you’ve missed the mark.
At one point during another absolutely brilliant practice this morning with Sofia, she had us place our right palm on our heart and our left palm on our belly and notice whether we felt our palms pressing into our body or our body receiving the chi from our palms. Our palms that never close, as she says often. We had just returned to Tadasana after completing the first side of a challenging sequence that really got into our glutes and outer hips. Such a simple noticing and yet so easy to miss.
Just think, how many of those moments do we miss each and every day of our lives?