Sunday, August 3, 2008

Mainting Inner Balance - A recipe for contentment in life

Skeptic Yogi's post on "Remembering who you are" inspired me to write this post as I wrap up my last evening in India. I am writing this while I watch from the calm quietness of my hotel room - the mist and monsoon rains approach my window as the waves of the Arabian Sea crashing at the sea wall of my hotel. Its one of my most favorite view of Juhu Beach in Mumbai.

I think we all aspire for peace, happiness, wealth, success, power etc - this list is never ending for all the things we aspire for. How many of us aspire for inner balance in life? That never quite makes it on our priority list.

Maybe once we are burnt out it may be something we would consider. Sometimes I wonder if we truly ever maintain inner balance, as even the quest and aspirations to achieve inner balance may cause us to lose it in the first place. When are we truly "balanced" in our mind? I wonder...

I read another interview with Guru Iyengar where he discusses a time in his life he felt uninspired, empty and resigned to disappointment with his yoga practice. It lasted for a month and he certainly was off balance I imagine. He got back into that balance state after practicing back bends. Today when I watch him practice, most of his practice is based in back bends. So do back bends help us achieve inner balance? I think so.

Back bends and inversions are essentially physical reversals of what we practice in our every day - our daily actions, everything being pulled down by gravity. I think these poses give our bodies a chance to get back into balance, physically, mentally and emotionally. The heart in back bends and inversions moves about the head or mind causing our emotions to open up as more blood gushes to the brain to energise it. Certain parts of the organs and muscles finally get a well deserved respite, while other parts are awakened.

So this morning at the hotel gym I practiced some great back bends along with head and handstands. They were invigorating and energizing. For a change the Bollywood stars working out beside me, stared at me rather than the other way around. Maybe some of them will be inspired to try yoga instead of grinding their knees on the treadmill.


The Yogi

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