It’s Thursday evening and I am getting ready for my regular Vinyasa class.
I run around my apartment getting ready, trying to find everything I’ll need for class, running through my Yoga Checklist:
- Yoga pants
- Top to match
- Towel for my mat
- Bag for the mat
- Water bottle
- Cozy for the bottle
- Nice smelling oils
The list seem to go on and on until I’m leaving home with everything but the kitchen sink.
Yoga has been around for thousands of years but in the past few years it has had an amazing increase in western popularity. This spike in popularity has made yoga more accessible and availability to more people than ever before.
Unfortunately as yoga grows, so does its surrounding industry. Many people are looking to make profit from this booming industry, none of which are certain to have an bad intentions. Many of these things can be very useful to yogis. Slip off your mat in your Hot Yoga class? Here buy our towel to keep your mat dry! Perfect!
The problem comes when these additions become too much—when they begin to cover the real reason for practicing yoga or when we are told we need to wear these clothes, in this way, on this mat, in order to practice yoga at that studio. And sadly we end up believing it!
When did this happen? I first came into my practice to find simplicity in a life that seemed over run with things. Now I find myself regressing to old tendencies, to misjudging my wants as needs. Through all of this clutter I began to ask myself, what do I really need to practice yoga?
The answer was simpler than any equinox or lululemon ad I’ve ever seen.
All I need is myself.
When we break down the word yoga it meaning is “yoke” or “union.” A yoga practice is the practice of finding union within ourselves. It is building a relationship and an awareness of internal self. There isn’t a pair of yoga pants in the world that will better equip me to better know myself.
Now am I going to stop buying my favorite brand of yoga pants? Probably not.
I sill think its okay to have wants and fulfill them when I can. But I am going to remind myself daily of what my true needs are.
My New Yoga Checklist:
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Apprentice Editor: Dana Gornall/Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo Credit: Joel Nilsson/Flickr