On Tuesday, I taught my regular all-levels class at Upward Dog Studio here in Ottawa. http://www.upwarddogyoga.ca/Upward_Dog_Yoga/Home.html. I taught a hip-opening class, with a focus on releasing, letting go, non-grasping. Which, if you've read the last couple of my blogs, you'll know is a little theme in my personal life - softening, letting go of the grasping, in our bodies, minds, attitudes, thoughts, etc. Based on the principle that grasping causes suffering and dis-ease, I am trying to soften the grasping in my life. Soften the grasping in my belly (a sure sign of when I'm feeling anxious!), soften the self-critical voices in my head, soften the need to get it right and be perfect all the time. So as our class progressed through various hip releasing poses, culminating in the delicious (and sometimes dreaded) pigeon, I reminded the class to come back to the idea of non-grasping, letting go of things that don't work for them anymore.
Letting go of ideas that keep us limited in how we live, letting go of thoughts that are self-destructive, letting go of holding in our bodies in ways that prevent us from softening into a pose. The breath is such a wonderful way to soften into a pose. By lengthening the exhalation as we breathe, our body softens, our mind softens, and we are able to release and sink into a pose a little more easily.
After I taught my class, I went to a class as a student. And guess what the theme of that class was?! Letting go! Releasing! We did many of the same poses I had just taught, including the pigeon, but leading to double pigeon, or fire log pose. This is a more intense hip opener.
What I loved was that I now got to experience, as a student, what I had just taught! I got to focus on my own softening, my own letting go. It was a wonderful treat, to have that right after I taught, in the same energy and same intention. I was delighted to know that the message I was inspired to share was the same message I received from my teacher.
And THEN, after that class, I spoke with another teacher friend who had been teaching a class at the same time as the one I was taking, and she was teaching about releasing and letting go too!!! WOW WOW! We were all in sync! Isn't that amazing? Three teachers, at the same studio, teaching at the same time, on the same theme or intention, having not discussed it at all! I don't believe in coincidences - I think we're all plugged into the same Source, the same Intelligence, the same Spirit! So very exciting!! When I start to doubt myself, when I start to feel fears and self-questioning arise, I can take a breath, and trust that I am on the right path; I am listening to the wisdom that resides in me. That resides in all of us. So I can soften that self-criticism and worry and fear, let go of it all, and just enjoy the ride! Wow! It's all such fun!