...have we really evolved or is this evolution shrouded in myth and conjecture and are we actually de-evolving?
“There is a big movement back to squatting!” quoted directly from my teacher Shakti Mhi - an amazing woman, teacher and mentor to me. And today she stretched not only my teaching abilities through some awesome corrections in my teaching styles... but also stretched my mind in the way that we interact with our inner-dwellings (our intestines).
Since yoga is a union of the physical and the energetic bodies, it is not just the external that we connect with. Oh yes, we see a beautifully sculpted body and think that they are in INCREDIBLE shape, but even someone which beautiful muscle tone might not be able to do even a forward Two Knee Twist because their muscles are so constrained and tight. This is very synonymous with the way we look at our lives as well. We see ourselves as balanced when we eat only vegetarian, work-out at the gym (or do yoga) 6 times a week, don’t drink, don’t smoke, don’t drive... don’t have sex. God... we’re human... get living man! There is so much more to “balance” than getting on a band-wagon and riding it all the way to the next Bikram’s Hot Yoga Centre.
Yes, there are so many great muscular benefits to living a healthy lifestyle, but it goes so much DEEEPPPPEERRR than just that. We are massaging all of our internal organs every time we do a Half Knee Twist or Downward Facing Dog... heck... pretty much most of the postures in yoga are massaging our internal bits and pieces. This affected me so profoundly today when were taught about our upper and lower intestines and what they do for us... or with us, is more to the point.
Through our human evolution we have been taught to sit on the toilet to have a poop... (yes I said poop... get over it... it happens to all of us)... and through this process, we have become so backed up with “stuff” that remains inside of us because we are not allowed to defecate in a natural position any longer. Most children... sorry... ALL children are squatters since the day the pop out into the world and they feel so comfortable with it. It isn’t until we say... sit on the toilet, that they become conscious of a form or torture that we, as adults, have just gotten used to. More an more people are being treated for constipation and other series of illnesses in the body and we can’t even take a poop properly to clean ourselves out.
Okay... so it was actually a bit more graphic than this when we were shown some of the photos today in class, but this is the Coles Notes version of “How to Squat”. It really was an interesting eye-opener to say the least. And I’m not saying that we should all jump back on this band-wagon and all start squatting again, but it certainly made me realize how much our body responds to all of the physical and grueling positions we put ourselves through in a day and how yoga helps to “loosen things up”... so to speak. :)
So there you have it... it’s all out there the world to see and learn think about it. I sure did when I came home tonight and looked at my toilet and thought... “huh”. ... in a whole new light.