Saturday, July 19, 2008

Nobodhi spoke to me

As much as I benefit from reading them (thanks, Google Reader, for making me able to follow more blogs than I could possibly click on consistently) I don’t always remark on what I find in other people’s blogs, but today one of my favorite bloggers, Nobodhi of Nobodhis Yoga Journal posted something that seemed to speak to me not of my experience today, but rather something toward which my experience these days seems to be pointing.

Have you ever had the experience of noticing slight changes arising in some portion of your life, seeing them strengthen and grow, but rather than see them as steps along a path, you see them just as changes? But then, a bit of a sudden, you see what they portend, to what they point?

The last several months, I’ve noticed that my awareness has begun to reawaken in my asana practice. Now I know that sounds a bit strange, as yoga is supposed to be about mind as well as body, but for the past few years, my practice has been to press my mind so deeply into my body that my mind’s job has been only building and maintaining. At any rate, during the past few months, I seem to be seeing my practice from the outside of the inside, if that makes any sense. Some part of my mind finds itself no longer wrapped up (or in) the practice, but watches both my mind and my body working there. I suppose it would be accurate to say that I seem to be identifying with something other than the mind-body on the mat. And that seems most peculiar. I assumed that it was a function of my meditation practice, and perhaps it is. But rather than taking me away from the practice, it seems to have taken me into the minutiae of the practice – the feeling and distinguishing of sensation of finger bones and hand tendons pressing into the floor, the visual rhythm of my gaze swings in sun salutations, the stretching of individual muscle fibers tying vertebra to vertebra. I tried to say something about that experience in my last post on the solo practice in Santa Monica – something more about the same in my post about my photo session with barefoot bhakti. The perspective makes the practice fresh again in ways it hasn’t been for years. New. Enlivened. Freed.

I don’t want to overdo the experience of my practice these days – it’s often quite what it has been for the past few years – but it has been changing bits at a time, and I’ve been noticing the differences.

But this afternoon, as I read this post by Nobodhi, it was like wandering around comfortably in mist, and then when the mist clears briefly, you discover that you’ve actually been moving toward something.

Nobodhi – may you be healthy, may you be happy, may you be peaceful, may you be clear.

And when you are, may you find new voice, if not for your-self, for us.