June 20, 2013

Why Travel for Yoga?

“It becomes firmly rooted when it has been habituated for a long time, without interruption and with sincere belief.”

~ Yoga Sutra 1.14

Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra 1.14 suggests that there should be no interruption in our yogic path.

Once a momentum is created, it should continue, meaning that yoga can’t be practiced temporarily but should be practiced every second, minute and day of our lives, without a break.

Through the yogic science, we have the “to do list” and are able to mechanically practice everyday at least the first four of the eight-fold path:

Yamas: self-restraints,
Niyamas: observances,
Asanas: postures of the body and
Pranayama: control of prana or vital force.

Through the yogic art we are able to enjoy the journey with love. We are able to discover our inner creativity by observing and attempting Pratyahara—withdrawal of the senses from the external world.

With happiness, compassion and sincerity, we are able to concentrate on the changes that should be made in our nature and personality.

Meditating upon this sutra, the idea of “traveling for yoga” came across my mind. Traveling for yoga becomes an asset to keep nurturing our path, our inner curiosity to discover both our complex inner and external world. We are able to prove ourselves that Asmita—our sense of “I-AM-ness” is insignificant.

Traveling for yoga reminds me of the importance of joyously continue practicing. By being surrounded by a yogic community we are able to watch ourselves attentively, to practice with effort, sincerity and devotion. We are able to observe our Yamas and Niyamas from different and new perspectives.

When traveling, we take a break from our everyday lives, from societal pressure. However, traveling is not a matter of running away from our reality but clearing up our minds and finding new eyes to connect deeper to ourselves.

Traveling for yoga allows us to be in the present moment to create a sacred space, well beyond our dreams, our past and future endeavors.

It’s important to watch upon our Sankalpa—our intentions when traveling as it can become a tricky asset to this journey. One can travel for work, for tourism, for education, or just for the sake of it. But whatever it is, traveling for yoga as a true spiritual evolution allows us to:

1. Continue evolving, defining our values, and exploring our own beliefs and most importantly, continue understanding the meaning of our life.

2. Delve deeper into ourselves by being surrounded by whole new community, landscape, culture, environment…

3. Lose sight of things, be fully present and engaged.

4. Cultivate awareness and creativity on and off the mat as we are challenged with all NEW, while being out of our comfort zone.

And lastly,

5. like yoga, traveling is never complete.

It is a lifetime practice that never finishes, one that requires effort, love and compassion.


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Ed: Bryonie Wise

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