Two Myths Take a Hike
Atlas is always shouldering his load.
You know that feeling -- the weight
of the everything pressing in, suffocating.
And there is Sisyphus pushing the
boulder uphill, over and over. Two
poster boys for ceaseless effort.
But what if (now here's a radical idea,)
the way of transformation is not a
long or tortured change?
What if it's just being here, this moment,
now, complete and whole? What if you
could whisper in Atlas's big ear, "It's
time to let go. Really. The heavens will
not disappear if you put your burden down."
Imagine him thinking about it. Imagine
him believing. See him set the load down,
straighten up, stretch, smile, stride over to
Sisyphus and say something you can't hear.
See the stone roll down, and Sisyphus
choose not to follow. You are the witness
to the shouts of joy, the head shaking
wonder and relief -- you mean it's this easy?
Imagine the spring in their step, the lightness
of their laughter as they climb that hill and
disappear from view.
What it we all took time to put down our responsibilities? During an asana practice, put down the weight of "having to do it all", of thinking everything will fall apart if you simply take a break and allow yourself to simply be in the moment.
When you do this, notice how the shoulders relax as the blades slip down the back.
Due to gravity, our most typical actions, and tension of feeling the heaviness of the world upon us, many people carry their shoulders in poor alignment. Release the tension, watch your actions, strengthen what's weak, and stretch what's overly strong or tight.
Properly aligned poses to strengthen the shoulder girdle:
Virabhadrasana II (Warrior II)
Parsvakonasana (Side Angle)
Vasisthasana (Side Plank)
Find some great stretches with:
Tadasana (Mountain) with the hands clasped behind the back
Binds with various poses such as with Trikonasana (Triangle) or Parsvakonasana (Side Angle)
Today is the first day of the rest of your life!