Continuing with our studies of the yoga sutras, this month we’ll look at sutra 2.1: Yoga in the form of action (kriya yoga) has three parts: 1) training and purifying the senses (tapas), 2) self-study in the context of teachings (svadhyaya), and 3) devotion and letting go into the creative source from which we emerged (ishvara pranidhana). (The sutra in full reads, “tapah svadhyaya ishvara-pranidhana kriya-yogah.”)
This practice shows how almost every thought you have has either attraction or aversion: I like this or I don’t like that. Addiction is an example of an intense attraction. The goal of this practice is to reduce these strongly colored tendencies of our thoughts and, when we notice them, to practice non-attachment. Just try it someday! Notice how often you witness yourself say, “I like this experience, object, person, place, food, etc.” or “I don’t like it.” It’s like living life in a pinball machine, bouncing from what we want to avoiding what we don’t want. The more often you interrupt this process with awareness, the more effectively you can control your actions and words and reduce the effects of emotional turmoil in your life.
May updates and special events:
- Yoga and Meditation opportunities at The Downing Museum. Join us at The Downing Museum in May! This month, Angie will teach the yoga class on Saturday, May 12, and Alice will continue to lead the meditation class, which will meet on Saturday, May 26. For details and to register, see this post.
- Farewell party for Nicole. We are delighted to celebrate Nicole’s graduation from WKU and to wish her well as she relocates to begin a new job in eastern Kentucky! Join us in the lounge on Friday, May 18, at 7 p.m. for a potluck farewell party.
- Mindfulness Roundtable with Pare and Flourish. We are excited to partner with Pare and Flourish, a networking organization for young professionals. On Saturday, May 19, Alice will offer a mindfulness roundtable—more information and registration available here.
- Book Club gathering. Join Cassandra and other members of our community to discuss Sally Kempton’s Meditation for the Love of It on Sunday, May 20, at 1:30 p.m. Please bring a vegetarian snack and your thoughts about the book to share.
- Living Our Yoga Yin class. On Friday, May 25, Alice and Angie continue team-teaching the Living Our Yoga Yin series, which combines a traditional sequence of Yin poses with exploration of selected yoga sutras. This month, our focus will be on sutra 2.1.
- Memorial Day class. On Monday, May 28, join Beshka at 9 a.m. for our traditional mixed-level holiday class.
- Alice’s yoga break begins in June. Alice will be taking a break from teaching Gentle and Yin Yoga at 4yoga beginning in June to take on extra duties at her WKU job. She will continue to guide the monthly meditation class at The Downing Museum and plans to be back on the mat teaching in January.
For a full list of May classes, please see the calendar page—or pick up a hard copy at The Pots Place. Each morning, we also post a brief reminder of that day’s classes on our Facebook page, if it’s convenient to keep up with us there.