As a yoga practitioner and teacher, my wish this holiday season is for us all to truly work towards finding a way to reduce or eliminate competition in the form of rivalry between practitioners and between teachers in our yoga communities.
Although going to a yoga class is a community gathering, the yoga practice itself is a personal practice. Every body truly is different, and each of us have different strengths and weaknesses.
So, my wish for you, the rajastic practitioner – I see you there at the before the start of class, we all do. Your press into handstand while the rest of us are in child’s pose or on our backs is impressive, but maybe not necessary. Instead of flaunting your feathers at the start of class and tiring yourself out halfway into class, work on saving your energy, work on keeping good form in all of your postures throughout the class. As a teacher, this is much more impressive than handstand acrobatics.
And my wish for you, yes you, the practitioner who tries to hide at the back of the classroom, I see you too. My wish for you is to stop hiding, find a space at the front of the classroom for a change. Yes, that yogi in the handstand is intimidating but you will be able to see and hear much better when you are not hiding in the back and trust me, rajastic yogi has weaknesses of his own, you two could learn very well from each other. Make friends, talk to those around you at the start of class.
And my greatest wish of all is for the teachers to end the rivalry between each other. We set examples for our students and it is important to cultivate humility. Just like our students, we all have strengths and weaknesses and different students will be drawn to different teachers if we can just learn to be ourselves. Instead of flying your feathers in another teacher’s class, be humble and let that teacher guide you through your practice as you would want your student to do. And when you are taking someone’s class, be a student. There is no need to advertise yourself in another teacher’s class. Embody your yoga and leave the mudslinging to politicians.