Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Unflagging Enthusiasm

Alasya: To remove the obstacle of laziness, unflagging enthusiasm (virya) is needed. The attitude of the aspirant is like that of a lover ever yearning to meet the beloved but never giving way to despair. Hope should be his shield and courage his sword. He should be free from hate and sorrow. With faith and enthusiasm he should overcome the inertia of the body and mind."
-B.K.S. Iyengar, Light on Yoga, 38th paragraph of the Introduction.

"I want to be in such passionate adoration
that my tent gets pitched against the sky!

Let the beloved come and sit
like a guard dog in front of the tent.

When the ocean surges, don't let me
just hear it. Let it splash inside my chest!"

-Jalaluddin Rumi, as translated by Coleman Barks

I think that in order to steer our lives in a helpful direction, we need to do things that Turn Us On. Otherwise life gets boring, and when boredom becomes a habit we can get kind of lazy, lacking the motivation to move forward creatively.

Obviously, laziness can get in the way of the Path of Yoga. How can I practice regularly and well if I am lazy? Good question...

According to Mr. Iyengar, "unflagging enthusiasm is needed." But where does this tireless zeal come from?

Virya=Power, Strength, Spiritual Potency, Prowess, Valor. These are Warrior words! Maybe we can kick lazyness in the butt! Strong daddy gets us going.

Where do you feel Powerful and Courageous? I think it's important to know this and to discover this. We are not here to be herded around by the messages of advertisers! We are here to feel our Good Stuff! Where is the Courage, the Chutzpa, the MoJo, the Zest? I believe that these are important qualities in life. And they just might be the antidote to laziness.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


YogaforCynics said...

Not really sure when I last had truly unflagging enthusiasm about anything...and that's really what I'm trying to work on now.

I think that's why I prefer the Rumi quote here to the Iyengar one, since he uses the word "want" rather than "need"...more the voice of the seeker poet than the didactic guru...

Laura said...

I wonder (lol) is it enthusiasm or curiosity? I find that curiosity and questions like: Can I do it? What might happen if I try_____? Are really good motivators...often for me, laziness translates to an underlying fear of some kind (ok sometimes, it really is just plain laziness) but more often than not there is a reason I am avoiding doing something. When I approach life with curiosity,then enthusiasm becomes possible. But that's just me, I guess.

Happy New Year Brooks!

susananda said...

Thanks for this post.. very timely!

Virya. And tapas!!