Yoga and ego

I am often surprised when my yoga students brave the elements and come to yoga on a cold, wet, wintery day or evening. I guess the adage, “First you drag your body along to yoga, and then your body drags you along to yoga” is about right!

I had to go to the hall today to fetch the blankets – they need a wash and there is no rain on the horizon so it seemed like a good idea. On the way I stopped in at the Telecentre to find out if there were any takers on the Yoga/Meditation Workshop that I am running (on behalf of the Telecentre) in a couple of weeks. Jenny asked me if I would take the Telecentre camera and get a photo of me in an asana to publish in the Walpole Weekly. Roland said he’d come and do the photography. Being in this situation is not so good for the ego because of the temptation to do something quite … difficult. However, good sense prevailed and I sat in swastikasana (auspicious pose), took chin mudra, and lowered my eyes. If that photo is used I’ll be pleased; otherwise one similar to the one here would be ok.

The point I’m making is that it is not a good idea to put people off by doing something complicated. The tendency is for them to think, “I’m too inflexible to do yoga, I couldn’t do that pose!” so they avoid coming along. I believe you don’t come to yoga because you’re flexible, you come to yoga to become flexible! Swami Venkatasananda was known to say, “Whatever you can do today is perfect for you today” and I think that is about right!

Swami Venkatasananda

Yoga and ego