What’s this about? See here.
1. All of your rebukes only give him energy. Every time you write or speak his name, he gains energy. And when you give him energy, it gives him cause to write another article for the New York Times. They love it! It gets a lot of readership and commentary (argument). So they give him another story. And so on.
There is a saying about PR—it doesn’t matter if they’re saying good things or bad things—if they’re talking about you, it’s good. Or something like that.
2. Yoga is not unique in having a potential for misuse, or over use. Just like any “good” thing, say, avocados, you can still over eat them. Are they now inherently bad because you have a tummy ache? No—you over did it. Just like any inherently neutral tool, say a hammer, is the hammer bad when you hit your thumb with it? No—you just misdirected the tool. The same thing is possible with yoga—as an inherently neutral tool (which we happen to think is “good”), it has the potential to be misused or overused.
3. When we whine and wail in such and emotional way how this person is ruining yoga, and saying all these horrible things about yoga, we only make neutral observers think that it’s odd that we’re so emotional, because if there were no credence at all to the argument, it wouldn’t trigger us so. If there were no credence to the argument, we would just laugh and say “Haha! What a silly article!” And move on.
Or say, “You know what he’s right! Some people do overdo it. But it’s not yogas fault—it’s their fault. And that’s part of the magic of yoga: it teaches us where true responsibility lies, and gets us out of blame mode and victim mode.”
4. When we whine and wail in such an emotional way about how this person is ruining yoga, we really short change the power of yoga and the power of the practice, and the power of the movement.
But he’s wrong, and bad, we insist.
Relax. Trust it all a little more.
And do your own good work teaching, making sure that you learn as much about yoga as possible. Educating people about all of the terrific things that it can do. Helping that handful of teachers who encourage people to “push through” as to why that is not a great idea…
Mother Theresa would never stage protests “against” something. She would always stage protests “for” things. Never “anti war” always “pro peace.” That is how we create an upswing of energy.
Use dissatisfaction about something (these articles) to create positive energy in the other direction.
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Ed: Bryonie Wise
Photo: Angry, Frustrated Woman—Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis