Yoga: exercise or practice? Most people in North America look at it as an exercise to make them flexible, bendable, strong. But while you are sweating to Ram Daas while someone is hollering out body movements that make your body quiver in a 5 minute downward dog… are you having “fun” or are you working? And if you are having fun… good for you… you’ve chosen yoga exercise… but if you are having fun?! YOU ARE ROCKIN’ IT!
Then, it becomes a practice. A practice of building your energy (Prana), not depleting it. Traditions say that yoga was created to build the Prana in the body so one can sit for long periods of time in meditation and contemplation. It was never meant to tone abs, harden your biceps or give you a firmer bottom. Those are the side-traits of the practice, but not the focus. And if you can bend yourself into a pretzel with your baby toes sticking in your nostrils… good on you… you can now apply to the circus and be at the top of their list for the next act after the Amazing Flaming Bocconcini!
Have fun, build your Prana, sit and enjoy for a bit. That’s why Corpse Pose (Savasana) at the end is so important… it integrates the energy you’ve amassed and then you can can re-enter the world with new eyes. If you think Savasana is for wimps and you are ready to rush back to work after your 60 to 75 minute “yoga exercise”… you’ve just paid $20 (or what ever you class price was) for a good stretch. But if you are able to realize that you have just connected with a quadra-billion-trillion bolt of Universal energy and you’ve had fun and finish with a smile on your face; now your getting your money’s worth AND more. Actually you’re getting a steal of deal really.
Lay in Savasana… savour the energy… lick the icing of of your spatula and practice it with joy and anticipation of the next time you get to be zapped by this amazing energy yoga is all about.