This week we’re remembering that yoga is about coming back to ourselves, inner transformation, and self realisation.
No new pairs of expensive leggings, or green juices, or detox retreats, or scented candles or ‘being nice to ourselves’ will replace the work that really has to be done – on the inside. These are all lovely things and nice to have, but they ought not to be confused with yoga.
And this is the uncomfortable and usually unspoken truth about yoga, especially in the west. We treat it as a form of therapy, of relief. We use it as a distraction from our pain, we want to have all the #goodvibes and feels, without doing the real work on the inside.
In our modern society we focus so much on the outside: looks, appearance, weight, status, money, possessions. We derive a short term dopamine hit from achieving these things, but wonder why we’re still empty inside.
Yoga provides a way inside, if you let it. A way into the body, physical and subtle; a way into the breath, into our feelings, our thoughts. A way into the real, universal self deep inside. It’s not immediate, and it’s not always pleasant nor easy. But as we connect to that everlasting sense of self, deep down, so we shine from the inside, we shine brighter than any candle or sparkling pair of pants ever could.