June 4, 2011

How To Be A Tantric Paradox

1.  Be a yoga teacher who spends most of the day, every day, barefoot but who has an unholy, slavish devotion to her shoe fetish.  Appease the shoe god by stacking your closets to the ceiling with boxes and boxes of shoes, and by regularly practicing arati.

2.  Religiously remind your students that sticking a pose is not the point, that the point is to be fully inside the process, then repeatedly re-injure your wrist wrestling with your old nemesis, handstand.

3.  Impress upon your students that yoga is about skillful action, and about saying what they mean and doing what they say, and that when they do that they’ll never find themselves apologizing for saying things they wish they hadn’t said.  Believe this, in your heart of hearts, to be true.  Then, in a fit of rage, tell someone you love like there’s no tomorrow to go fuck himself.

4.  Begin your day with both a green smoothie and an entire french press of coffee with half & half and sugar.  Feel yogic and healthy because it’s organic half & half.

5.  Although you’re not a Buddhist, wish for all beings everywhere to experience happiness and freedom.  It’s just a nice thing to do.   Except for that one person who you hate, and to whom not enough bad things can happen, and who should wind up a miserable shell of a broken person as karmic retribution for wronging you, fervently wish goodwill upon all sentient beings.

6. Have a hard time deciding whether to dedicate your practice to your teachers or to Rachel Zoe.

7. Try incredibly hard to be worthy of occupying that seat you’re sitting in, even though you’re not always sure that you are.  Buy yourself something nice online to make yourself feel better.

8.  Take it all very, very seriously but not too seriously.

9.  When out to dinner, finish chewing that bite of cheeseburger before you greet the student who stops by your table to say hello.

10.  Swallow your medicine down with a slug of martini.

11.  Hope. Even when life has served up profound disappointments, even when your heart is broken, deeply hope, for over the horizon of your heartbreak lies the promise of something more.

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Bernadette Birney  |  Contribution: 3,400