So, what are the non physical, not so immediate benefits of yoga? We hear a lot about yoga being “much more” than simple stretching and strengthening exercises. Authors and gurus discourse in length about the eight limbs of yoga practice, about the union of mind, body and spirit. There is much discussion about the chakras, and the other esoteric results from regular, disciplined and long term practice of yoga. It can get a little frightening, there is so much to understand, and so much seems to be that blink of an eye away from comprehension. It can be overwhelming, and lead one to feel that one will probably never, ever, quite “get it”.
There is good news. The esoteric results of yoga just seep in unheralded, and stay on to become part of oneself unrecognised. One need not understand a single couplet of Patanjali in order to realise that one has become a little more in tune with oneself. That a part of oneself that one never believed possible has come to the forefront.
I can only speak from personal experience. I am still a novice in the practice of yoga, and I have more to learn than I can imagine about all aspects of yoga, yet I do see a difference in my reality. I cannot say I have become a better person, yet I have certainly become more aware.
Here is a peek. Those who believe that I am a calm person have no idea about the turbulence I have within me – the shortness of temper, the doubts, the cynicism. Yet, they are right. I still have my quicksilver temper, but I am more in control of it. When I say that it seems that I somehow work on myself, exercise self control and make myself become less angry. What I think happens is this. I get very angry. VERY ANGRY. Then, even as I burst out in a volcanic mess, I notice how angry I am. Very soon after that, I find I cannot maintain that level of excitement anymore. The cause for the anger is still here, my sentiments about the situation are still valid, and yet….. that strong feeling subsides, and I am in a much better place to present my case, or walk away, as required for desired results. Effortless shifting of gear.
Now that is a cool thing, is it not?
PS: There are people who do know how temperamental I am, as well 😛
Image credit: volcano: http://totallycoolpix.com/2011/01/the-shinmoedake-volcanic-eruption/
volcanic plain: http://home.iprimus.com.au/foo7/volcmap.html