How to relax under great strain

One of the greatest gifts of yoga is that it teaches us how to relax under great strain. This has by far been one of the most valuable gifts for me. I don’t always get it right but yoga has shown me a way to get there, that it’s possible. To smooth out the breathing when your instinct is to make huffy breaths. To have the strength of mind to realize while sweat drips into your eye, “this asana too shall pass.” And rather than sinking into the cold waters of suffering we rise and float with our breath directly through the heart of the storm. Eyes wide open. Breath even and deep. All muscles not needed for the task at hand, unclenched. Done often enough, this yoga leaks over to the rest of your life.

But the practice never ends.

* This post was born out of a comment I made inspired by a wonderful post here.

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This entry was posted in Habits and Rituals, Health, Meditation and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to How to relax under great strain

  1. I do often get stuck in the pain and huffy breaths, and you are right that the practice of trying to transcend that (can you really TRY to transcend? question for another time) never ends. xox

  2. Amy H. says:

    So weird how you’re always in tune with me! We must be on the same path! I haven’t been to yoga in a couple months, but am planning on it tonight…I am feeling un-flexible (per your post a week or so ago), and I am feeling unable to quiet my mind at night, which I KNOW is easier when I’m doing yoga regularly!

  3. Amy Whelan says:

    Hmmm…I find that if I “try” the sublties are lost on me. But if I “allow” then everything falls in to place–trick is to “allow”.

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