We all deserve a moment in the day where we enter the timeless; we forget our job, our responsibilities, the persona that we've created for ourselves, and abide in the part of ourselves that feels the most real. It's coming home. It's not about escaping our lives. It's about everyday building a discipline of presence and awareness where we can enter back into the conversation of what is most real and take that with us back into our everyday.
This conversation with what is most real depends on awareness--paying attention. We experience many harvests in our lives, the opportunity to gather the richness of everyday miracles, and if we are not aware, these harvests will pass us by. The seasons changing, the seasons of our lives coming and going, the richness of sharing the lives of our children, are all examples of our different harvests. Without awareness, seasons come and go unnoticed. Without presence, we think we are living our lives but instead our lives are living us. We go on day by day simply perpetuating the daily "to do" list without ever getting the feeling like we are experiencing anything real. But with awareness, we can fully receive the richness of the moment because we've apprenticed ourselves to see it. By practicing awareness it's not that our lives suddenly don a reality but now we open our eyes to see the beauty and realness that was there all along. With awareness, even our "to do" list will seem magical and inviting.
To find this realness requires radical grounding, some form of practice to which we can travel each day. Coming to yoga and moving into the practice-realm of our body and breath, this nuts-and-bolts portion of being, gives us passage into the chambers of the more ethereal parts of being, mind and heart. The combination or uniting of these different elements, body/mind/spirit, is yoga. Yoga isn't the only way to do this, meditation, poetry, music, running, Ben and Jerry's (that's right) or anything else that makes you fully aware of the moment and alive are all good ways to practice this sort of realness. With its emphasis on breath and presence, the immediacy of our bodies sensation, yoga, however, is a particularly effective and calibrated method to help us develop and maintain our awareness--sort of a template whereby we can then base our life's events and decisions from.
Once we've grounded ourselves with our yoga practice and removed the peripheries, once we've practiced being in that space that is so real, we then go back into the conversation of our jobs, families, and relationships armed with that realness, with a quality of being that feels very authentic and very natural.
Then, having replenished the source (us) we can benefit those things that grow out of us instead of sapping them. A medicine man once told me that if we refuse to take care of ourselves through practices like yoga, we end up becoming a burdening rather than helping those things that depend on us.