by Nicole Becker
Stop thinking and feeling?
This is not exactly the advice you usually get.
This is definitely not what any good therapist would tell you.
Or anyone in the healing professions, for that matter.
Therapists and healers of every stripe encourage us to examine, inquire, think and feel deeply. Many of us have spent countless time and money to uncover all the deepest roots of our psyche and shadow in order to bring our unhealthy patterns to light and finally resolve them.
This is good an important work, BUT
There is a lot more to you (and your mental well being!)
than your thoughts, emotions and stories.
In Yoga we recognize 5 layers of our being (koshas) that require tending:
To tend the body we do our physical practice
To tend the breath/life force we do breathing practice
To tend the mental-emotional layer we rest the senses
To tend the wisdom body we practice inner absorption
5) SPIRITUAL HEART/JOY
To tend to the spiritual heart we practice meditation in presence
So what do I mean when I say, "stop thinking and feeling"?
In Yoga, there is no doubt that as we explore the layers of our being that we are examining, experiencing, inquiring, and feeling deeply!
So what do I mean when I say "stop thinking and feeling"?
What I mean is: stop rehashing your problems, stories, traumas, emotional baggage and suffering. Periodically. As a healing practice.
I am not saying ignore them, bypass them, avoid them or never tend to them.
I'm saying that Yoga practice is about connecting to the part of yourself that needs no improvement!
Maybe you noticed that in #3 in the list above, that tending to the mind/emotions did not involve more thinking/feeling! It involves resting the mind and emotions by going inward.
The great Yogis tell us we are already enlightened!
Time and time again across the ages, the great yogis and sages tell us that we are all already enlightened! We just don't recognize it because we are terribly busy with all our suffering.
Yet most of the time our modern solution to suffering is to think about our suffering and try to think ourselves to the bottom of it.
You cannot think yourself into wisdom or enlightenment.
You can only let go. Let go of the past, the future, the labels, the stories... all the concepts.
It is there - in the quiet and pure aliveness of presence - that the wisdom of your deepest self can come forward! The practice of Yoga is a "trust fall" into the nourishing support of the eternal present moment.
It takes practice. But when you stop over-thinking and feeling you will find the wisdom presence right there. In You. As You. Through You. And All Around You.
This is what real Yoga will help you with.
A chance to uncover your pre-existing condition of enlightenment!
For a supportive journey into your natural wisdom, check out the new "Nourishing Ojas" Online Immersion Program
Author, Nicole Becker
Yoga Therapist, Retreat Leader, and Heart of Yoga Teacher, Nicole Becker offers yoga and self-care insights and tips.