Monday, May 14, 2007

What's the "right" Yoga?

Just now I read a posting at regarding the Yoga Journal Conference in Lake Geneva. When you read the post, you'll see that the one thing that all Yogis agree on is to disagree. Well, it might not be that bad, but it's pretty close.
Here is the comment that I left regarding the issue of "expert" Yogis having such differing opinions:
Somehow the different opinions from the "expert" Yogis has always given me a sense of comfort. The first time I was exposed to these differences, I was scared. My background was math and engineering--there must be a "right" answer. What I learned, was that if there was a "right" answer, then no one knew it.

Over time, I came to find freedom in these differences and realized that what feels "right" and good for me is what's right for me--not necessarily for someone else.

On different days, different moods, different times in my cycle, etc, the "right" answer changes. This keeps me on my toes and my awareness must be present to know what's right for now.

As a teacher, it helps to keep me humble and to know that I can never feel exactly what someone else feels. Our experiences are unique, and in seeing all of these different views from "experts", I know that each person is truly their own best teacher.

In summary, listen, learn, take what works for this moment, and store the rest. It just might be what's "right" on another day.



yogaglamgirl said...

Hello Kris,
Thanks so much for visiting me. I agree completely with things being right at the right time. and So neat that you know of Tom Brown. I really like the philosophy that he talks about the best.

Regina Clare Jane said...

Kris- this is so interesting that you posted this... I know you know of my experience at my workshop, and as I was talking to my therapist about this yesterday, it hadn't occurred to me till then that he was "correcting" me in a position that I felt absolutely safe in and comfortable for myself! He took no heed as to what the posture was like for me as I was doing it, only what he thought I should look like doing it in his class! This was a revelation to me! Before then, I had thought I was doing it wrong! But no, I was doing it right- for ME!
He disallowed the fact that we are all different... a cardinal mistake for a teacher...
Thank you so much for this very enlightening post... and I will visit the link as well.

Total Health Yoga - Kris said...

Thanks for the comments. Interesting that the Yoga Sutras talk about svadhayyaya, self-study. If we all started from the same place--physically and emotionally--then perhaps alignment and asanas would be the same for all of us. However, we don't all start the same (what a blessing!!!). So, it only makes sense that our experiences and what works for each of us will be different.
With that said, some concepts (like external rotation of the upper arm bones) make sense for just about everyone. But the deeper we get, the more our unique nuances come out.
That's one of the beauties of Yoga--learning the know, honor, and love yourself!