Can Yoga still transform a person?
I’ve been teaching Yoga for over 12 years, and it’s been a magnificent dozen! During that time I’ve gone through phases of highly intensive self-practice to weeks of laconic indulgence. Both however have helped mould me into the sort of Yogi that I am today – fierce yet at ease. Or so I think!
Years ago when I read the yogic texts I came across a wonderful couplet that said – the dedicated, intense Yogi reaches Enlightenment in 7 years, the mild one in 9 and the laggard-type in 11. Which brings me to a critical appreciation of my own yoga journey – 12 years and no enlightenment! Which also brings us to a pertinent question; does modern Yoga still retain its capacity for self-transformation? It has been a roadmap of the inner journey for over 6,000 years. But in it’s modern day avatar has it become just a Health-fix; or worse still, a Fitness-fad? The whole world is practising Yoga today – it’s become so mainstream these days that even real estate ads are mentioning that their properties have a Yoga hall! But as the science has come down from the Himalayan caves to the ubiquitous Yoga studios worldwide, can it still claim to bear resemblance to the science that transformed Adiguru, Buddha, Patanjali and other such luminaries! Well, there’s only one way to find out…right?
Practise Yoga EVERYday! #Yoga365Days
If I were to practise Yoga and Meditation daily with the perseverance that the ancients called for; will I be able to see a significant change in myself? I’ve understood over years that the basic nature of a human being is really tough to change – the ‘Swabhava’ largely remains the same and shows up in the most unsuspecting incidents in daily life. So, if Yoga has to transform me, then my innate nature – ‘Swabhava’ needs to undergo a change. Then, I can claim that Yoga works; that it still lives up to its millennia-old promise of helping a person find out whom he/ she really is.
So, I’ve begun. Today I resumed my 5am start to the day and 1 hour of Yoga and Meditation. I felt clear-minded enough to write a blog article – something that gives me immense joy. Tomorrow, I’ll do the same. And then day after tomorrow…..And in this way I’ll complete 365 days – 1 year. Why am I so confident? Because Day 1 is always much tougher than the remaining 364 days! Because a 10,000 step journey begins with a single step!
And what happens if even after 1 year I’m not transformed? …….. Well, I’m not thinking about it. But maybe, I’ll just donate my yoga mat to someone wanting to lose weight!
– MANISH POLE
Yoga Teacher, Writer & Speaker on Yoga & Wellness, Co-founder & Director of the Total Yoga style & the schools. Co-conspirator of World Yoga Day Festival in Bangalore on June 21st.