Tuesday, July 17, 2012

To Talk or Not to Talk

I was reading other Yoga blogs to get a sense of what "successful" blogs are talking about.  One particular blog was beautifully designed.  It had links to fancy Yoga wear, Yoga magazines, Yoga retreats and videos on how to do certain poses.  I was impressed.  What I read though, made me pause.  It was all about the body, alignment and discussed how they didn't want the "talking" or "spiritual" in the class.  Granted the writer of the blog said that he wanted to find the spirit, go within, but he didn't want help getting there.  He said that he could get there himself.

So my question to you, if you've taken my class is-- do I talk to much?  Rev. Jaganath has said that he was taught to be succinct and allow the silence to help students focus on going within.  I absolutely agree.  I wish I didn't have to put music on, but teaching at the gym-- the music on outside the Yoga room is very non-relaxing, as are the weights being lifted and dropped.  One gym I worked at had a raquetball court attached to the Yoga room.  That was very relaxing, let me tell you.  So I play music to set the mood for relaxation and I find myself repeating things that the regulars might already know-- "focus on your breath,"  "let go of your judgement of yourself and others," "enjoy the stretch."  I guess I worry that the newcomers (of which there are a few in each gym class) need to hear it.  But also I think that some of the regulars need to hear it too-- and maybe for some-- hear it clearly for the first time.  

There was a time that I would lead Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation) a few times and then ask everyone to do it themselves without my prompting.  I become quiet and watch.  Afterwards I had a student ask me to please not go quiet for she felt she needed my voice to help her quiet her mind.  She felt that in the quiet that she could not relax.

I was taught to try and use as few words as possible.  That said I try to read the room and see what is needed and sometimes that means reminding those in the room to relax or not try to push themselves further than they can go today. 

So what do you think?  To Talk or Not to Talk, that is the question.

P.S.  I do have a tip of the day:  Speaking of silence, do you notice how calm you get around the ocean?  The radio, TV and discussion is not needed.  Find some time every day to get quiet-- it doesn't have to be silent, but you do.  Rev. Jaganath always says (I'm paraphrasing very poorly here) that we we have lips and teeth as two barriers to help us really see if we need sound coming out of our mouths.  Meanwhile our ears don't have any barriers.  We were meant to listen more than speak-- that's the point.  Maybe drive without the radio on.  Maybe sit somewhere without a book to distract us.  Just sit and take in nature, people-watch, or meditate. 

Hope that helps.  And don't forget to discuss with me your opinions on talking during Yoga class.

Tomorrow 10am Yoga at Mercer County Park.  Free.  See you there if you can make it (with ice water and a towel-- it's going to be a little warm.)

-- Yoga Girl

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This blog was born through the inspiration and teachings of Rev. Jaganath Carrera and The Yoga Life Society. www.yogalifesociety.com