If it comes from a place of fear, that’s resistance. I recently attended a workshop with West Coast Yogini Kathryn Budig.
Budig urged her class to “move from a place of love not fear.” For example, she spoke of the first time she went skydiving and realized that the fear she felt wasn’t about dropping 14,000 at 150mph, it was the fear of the unknown that scared her. Now she skydives all the time and loves it.
When we replace love with fear we can live life to the fullest. When I started to practice Yoga, I was always in a state of fear and resistance. I had anxiety that I was going to hurt myself, that I was going to do it all wrong, that I was going to pass gas, or that I was going to fall on my face.
Since I lived most of my life ridiculed for being overweight, I allowed my fears to stop me from living life to the fullest. However, like dropping a stone in a pond, as I let go of my fear, it rippled positively into all directions of my life and eventually I became a yoga teacher.
Along the way I came across a book that really helped, by Stephen Pressfield, called The War on Art: BreakThrough the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles. Pressfield identifies that dark little voice of resistance inside of us all that tries to keep us down in some way or another.
The book helped me so much, that I now use it a part of my yogic philosophy as a student and as a teacher. My "aha" moment came to me in the first pages of the chapter titled “What I Know.”
“There’s a secret that real writers know that wannabe writers don’t, and the secret is this: it’s not the writing part that’s hard. What’s hard is sitting down to write. What keeps us from sitting down is Resistance."
The philosophy of the book is embrace your inner creative genius.
There's a voice inside that tells us: “You can’t do that.” “You can do your work or practice later.” “You are unlovable.” “Don’t trust in yourself.” “You are less than.”
This is the dark little voice Pressfield and I share. You don’t have to be a writer, painter, sculptor to embrace your genius. Pressfield reveals that the word genius originated from the Romans to describe the inner spirit that guides us to our calling. He describes, It’s "soul’s seat. The vessel that holds our being in potential, our stars beacon, our Polaris.”
So to reach your potential do what you love and it will guide you towards your inner genius.
“Every sun casts a shadow, and genesis’ shadow is resistance.” Yoga is an art form. It’s not a religious trend. It’s a way to connect with our inner genius, and let go of self-imposed miseries like judgment, anger, and expectation.
I like to think of it as a way to nurture and feed the inner soul. It’s a wonderful tool to help us direct our body, mind and soul toward the joy we all deserve in this world.
Our yoga practice helps us overcome resistance, regain focus, feed our genius, and provide clarity and release. It helps us make room in our mind, body and spirit for all the good stuff we deserve.
“Resistance is the most toxic force on this planet,” Pressfield warns. It is Resistance that prevents us from reaching our true potential. It is fear that keeps us from trying. Let’s all connect with the light and the darkness within, and then we will be able to triumph over the darkness. Our sun shines through us, we all matter in this world. We all are related. We are all creative geniuses.
Saturday, June 2:
Check out Family Yoga from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at the Yoga4All studio in Seminole. Cost is $20 for a family of 4 people. $5 each additional person. This class is held the first Saturday of every month.
Sunday, June 3:
Yogani is hosting two local master teachers teaming up for a workshop for teachers, Assist and Adjust in the Flow: a Workshop for Yoga Teachers with Ashley Halley and Eric Wheeler from 2:30-4:30 p.m. Cost is $35. After that you can try Yin Yoga for Athletes with Lisa Jamison from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Cost is $25.