Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Forceful Hatha Yoga for the Biggest Pushover!

"Of stable mind, capable of Laya Yoga, virile, independant, noble, merciful, forgiving, truthful, brave, young, respectful, worshipping his teacher, intent on the practice of Yoga, such is a superior seeker. He can reach enlightenment after six years of practice. The Guru instructs this forceful man in Hatha Yoga."
-B.K.S. Iyengar, Light on Yoga, 53rd paragraph of the Introduction.

For much of my life, I have been such a pushover! No backbone. Spineless. My only defence was hiding. Inner stubbornness was my only stronghold of dignity. Run for cover! Get out of danger. It seemed better to protect my precious cargo than to risk living... But, I am alive, so how could I NOT risk living? It doesn't make sense, but when has that mattered when it came to my fear (which was all-powerful)? Life is not so enjoyable for this kind of person! No wonder I used to tell myself and my friends that "life sucks." It sure does when you feel totally powerless... (And are Totally Stupid...)

Totally Stupid Sutra 1.2.2:
Smile at everybody when you are sad inside.

What is the benefit of knowing that you are right, when your actions are all lies? This is a very real problem that a real pushover might one day find themself thinking. And it can all be because of the noble cause of being nice and polite no matter what. But the cost for being interminably nice can be high. Too high.

Recently, I've been blessed with little shots of anger that have started to let me know when someone has crossed a boundary with me. I say it is a blessing because it seems to be a new development in my experience. My anger is re-awakening from the long sleep that it can have in someone who believes or has been taught that they do not merit respect. Life is supposed to go badly for someone like this. They are supposed to screw up. This person is not treated well, or particularly liked by others. Well, this lie is over! And it was never true, even though I once offered hospitality to those toxic thoughts. I was just being the presence of a Total Lie! That takes too much energy!

Everybody deserves respect. Everybody has good in their heart. And I've seen mine. And some things are going well for me. I can no longer believe the lie that 'I'm no good'. The cover has been blown! Yeah!

So if you are someone in my life who recently saw me awkwardly attempting to say what I needed or felt, standing up for myself, or maybe I apologized for snapping at you, please bless me. I have my new friend: Anger, and I don't always know what to do with her, but I am so grateful that she has come. I was emotionally handicapped before. I was too afraid to feel this. So now that I am able to feel, I don't always know how to act. I am not always in control. The price for the false sense of control was too high. I prefer to be awkward. I prefer to feel.

And so I do believe that it is a part of my yogic path that I can feel this, and know this. This is what Forceful Hatha Yoga can do for a Total Pushover.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


Anonymous said...

I was at a talk last night where anger was broken down like this: Behind the expression of anger is fear. Behind fear, there is a deep sense of caring.

And that really made sense to me.

I've been struggling with my own anger for many years - is it okay to be angry or like you said, just smile even when you're sad? Be angry but don't let anyone know about it? I've done all of those things.

So good for you in acknowledging your anger, because all it really means is that you care deeply. The next step of course, is to find a way to strip back the anger and the fear and just be with the experience of caring. Certainly that's what I'm working on myself!

Also, I remember some years back when I first started Muay Thai kickboxing. It was such a shock to have someone throw a punch at me (holding pads) or to throw one myself. It suggested a sense of force and ease with such an expression that I'd never accessed before.

So be awkward and clumsy but definitely feel. And work forcefully with that experience until it once again transforms.

Namaste xx

YogaforCynics said...

A "pushover" and "stubborn" at the same time seems a bit of a paradox...but it's one that describes me, as well...

Namaste_Heather said...

Very raw post, Brooks. Good for you! Have a lovely Monday ;-)

Emma said...

it's a good conversation; svasti, you bring up things i've been thinking about, too. i got really mad today (felt taken advantage of)... but if i had just willingly given, would i have been taking advantage of still? or should i not let that happen?