It’s human nature to try and destroy things that are positive and uplifting. It is also human nature to hide behind the shroud of fear. Fear is of the ego and its purpose is to limit the soul and keep it “in check.” Most of our insights are fear based/ego-based and are meant to control the masses. People who do not understand themselves (their higher self) turn to others to tell them how to think. They trust “popular opinion” over their own intuition. Why would anyone give control of their life over to any one person or mere feeble portrayal of words?
The truth is that yoga is NOT a physical exercise. Yes, it gives you an obvious physical benefit but that is not the goal of yoga. Yoga is a means to self-discovery. It teaches you who you are, where you come from, and how to keep yourself on a path of balance, happiness and equanimity of mind. Yoga is a gift and when practiced with this mindset, there are a multitude of benefits to be had.
Everything comes down to intention. When the intention for practicing yoga comes from within – a state of consciousness for the highest benefit of the self, the vibration is much higher/lighter and the potential for physical harm is lessened. When the intention behind yoga is external and born of the ego, the vibration is much denser/heavier and opens up the practitioner to potential physical harm. Students and teachers who are only interested in showing off are usually the only ones who risk injury.
Yoga is not a competitive sport. No one is watching you. No one is winning. No one cares how “great” you may look on your mat, but if that is of importance to you or to your teacher, then something is gravely wrong.
You know your body. You know its limitations. You know what feels good and what is not feeling good on any given day. You are your best vehicle for understanding the practice of yoga. Why would anyone look outside of themselves to understand the benefits of yoga on their own body? The only people who do that are the ones who need to feel accepted because they do not believe in the power of themselves.
Yoga is a personal practice and if you do not understand yourself and do not have the wherewithal to learn about yourself, then the practice of yoga may not be for you. Yoga is not a lemming sport; it is a path to individual consciousness. Yogis do not follow the masses; they follow their hearts.
If you are a true yogi, you will question the validity of that NYT article and find the answer to your quest on yoga from within. It is the only place to look.
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