I recently received a beautiful gift of the Daily Greatness Yoga Journal. It’s a beautiful book (I have trouble writing in any book and especially one that’s so pretty so I need to work up to it lol). At the very front it ask you to make a commitment to a yoga lifestyle. You’re likely thinking ‘easy peasy- you’re a yoga teacher’ but I hesitated. To me, a yoga lifestyle is an enormous undertaking. To live it every day isn’t easy.
I know a lot of people have heard of the 8 limbs of yoga. I’ll add links to the limbs as I’ve written about them before in a deeper way, however living them all every day isn’t easy. It’s not for the feint of heart as they say. The practice of yoga asana – the poses that are seen in classes – is such a small piece of the yoga puzzle; the ancient teachings that guide us to enlightenment. Doing yoga and teaching yoga classes in the way done here in the western world just doesn’t cut it when considering a yoga lifestyle.
So what does cut it? Following, to the best of our abilities while knowing we won’t achieve at all times, all 8 limbs of yoga, along with their sub parts. This is essentially the way to delve into a moral, ethical life using self-discipline as well. The 8 Limbs as laid out by Patanjali, consist of:
This is not an easy path to follow. It’s riddled with downfalls and self-doubt and opportunities to fail. That said, it’s also a very valuable path that has been laid out to help us achieve enlightenment – the end goal, the goal of all other goals. It’s well worth trying and to incorporate into your lifestyle. So why did I hesitate? Because I momentarily forgot that I don’t need to be perfect; I simply need to aim myself in the direction and use loving-kindness and compassion for self when I fall off the path.