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Peace is not a lack of darkness but a freedom to travel between all worlds.
Simply put; Yoga uses breathing techniques, exercise and meditation to help improve health and happiness. It is a mind-body practice with a 5000 year old history steeped in ancient Indian philosophy.
Modern yoga has many new variations. In ancient times fitness was not the primary goal. Yogic tradition focused on expanding spiritual energy using breathing methods and mental focus.
Every practitioner has a unique relationship with their discipline dependent on their journey. At age 13 I experienced a traumatic event that drove me out of my body and into a dark state of depression.
I had no tools to cope with the debilitating symptoms. I choose emotional repression, drugs/alcohol and reclusion from the world.
From the outside my life looked like a failure and there were people who reinforced this perception. Somehow, somewhere deep inside my heart I knew my life was destined to be greater.
In my darkest hour, I vowed to be in search of truth. Whatever form it came in. Though I wasn’t aware of it, this is where my Yoga journey began. I traveled all over for the next two years – Vancouver, Bali, Thailand, Toronto, Hawaii, New Zealand, Sydney, Perth, Brisbane, Melbourne – searching for truth and guidance.
While I did this, I knew I had ingrained emotional repression. Therefore the act of unlearning these behaviours would be my first step. To learn the language of emotion and the tools of self expression would be the key to unlock these chains impairing me.
I knew I had a busy mind that caused me unyielding grief and self doubt, which is what lead me to meditation. I recall a defining moment during Vipassana meditation retreat where after a long, focused session I came out into the garden and watched a tree’s leaves dance in the wind.
It was the first time I had ever felt pure bliss without the need for substances or another person to hold me up. It was a feeling beyond what I ever thought possible.
After yoga teacher training, I now want to deconstruct my negative conditioning and habitual dissociation from self is what I seek in my present-day Yoga. To move toward a future of practicing daily empowerment and acceptance. A rooted connection to the authentic self. I seek that practice foremost in my life. That is the practice of Yoga.
Yoga translates as ‘uniting ones soul with the divine universe.’ The practice of connecting to the present moment and thereby connecting to everything. There is a clarity that comes with a daily practice.
Through all the pain and trauma of the past we have an overflowing bounty of love to give to the world. Through openness we reach people who are suffering as we have suffered. Evolve past who we are and contribute to leaving the world a better place for all creatures.
Whether you practice, for enlightenment, truth, love, acceptance, health or mindfulness, with search there is peace to be found.