Yoga classes...my life is full of yoga classes either taking or teaching them. It is easy to start to believe that yoga is exactly this, classes. Don't get me wrong, no complaints. I am so grateful to be teaching and taking such a wide variety of classes. It is a gift!
But, there is more.
Maybe, you expect me to now point to the realm beyond yoga, some mystical parallel cosmos of bliss that attending classes and performing asanas will lead its practitioner in which to participate. I don't know if that that place exists. Instead, I am referring to the mundane world of water and wood.
Water and wood?
Yes, I am discovering a whole other world of yoga, the everyday practice of life that supersedes and underlies all asana whether it be in a class setting or at home. I am referring to the work of life regarding house chores (dishes, laundry, groceries, etc.), bills, insurance, car maintenance and all that other non-categorical stuff one experiences throughout the day. You know; the stuff that always continues without ending. These tasks can be very exasperating and frustrating, always streaming and continuing to flow without an end in sight. The ancients referred to this as carrying water and chopping wood.
Maybe this sounds like a stretch. How can this be considered yoga?
I guess it all depends on perspective. It isn't yoga in the strictest sense of looking at yoga as an asana practice. That is true. But if one looks at yoga as a means of interconnection and integration then these seemingly mundane tasks become a means to express one's yoga in daily affairs. Setting an intention to address these tasks the same way one might before a class or home practice then undertaking them with the awareness and mindfulness can transform them into a practice of water and wood yoga.
Enjoy your practice!