Just by being you, and being unafraid you can be an example to others.’ Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita.
Namaste friends and welcome to 2018!
I hope it will be a brave and powerful year for us all. A year in which we are able to come closer to who we authentically know ourselves to be and in which we are brave enough to offer that out into the world.
People who practice yoga are interested in alignment. When we come up into a handstand we’re interested in how our shoulders align above our wrists, how our hips align above our shoulders and how our knees align above our hips. This ‘stacking’ of the joints or more mobile elements of the ‘structure’ of the handstand allows good alignment which is another way of saying that the structure becomes stable.
When an architect is drawing the plans for a high building she will look at the points of weakness and reinforce these structurally. She will design for good ‘alignment’ in the building so that it is strong. But even structures as solid and immovable as a skyscraper need to be able to move in the wind. They need some flexibility. It’s this skilfully designed alignment in the building that allows for the stability and flexibility needed to keep the building standing in high winds.
So it is with our handstand or our tadasana. We look for alignment, for a sense of steadiness. The building blocks of our posture need to stack neatly and purposefully one upon the other so that we can stand on our hands, or even steadily on our own two feet on the yoga mat and in life.
Today I saw an old and frail lady walking down the street. She was very hunched over and stooped. Her posture gave her whole being a resigned air of depression. She was shuffling and sad in her body, and the vibration surrounding her felt shuffling and sad. Young or old, our bodies are mirrors for our mental states and when we get on the yoga mat we have the chance to ‘realign’ back into the best version of who we are.
Because of my young family I don’t have a huge amount of time for yoga asana practice in my life at the moment and sometimes people ask me what I do when I don’t have time to do much (on the mat). What I do in terms of the names of the poses varies. But what I do every single day is ‘re-align’. That is remind myself of Arjuna’s magical teaching, remind myself of who I am and what my jobs are during this precious lifetime I have been given. I try to hold my head up high and walk with ease. Sometimes I stoop but yoga helps me never to get too stuck in that way of being.
I try to be ‘me’ as authentically as possible, and within that I try to be brave enough to approach each day aligned with my values and the highest vision of who I think I can be in the world.
Wishing you all a brave and courage filled year ahead,
With Great Love All is Possible
P.S. I’m teaching a lot more this year and also working on a new book (the title is ‘Everyday Sadhana’) as well as some online offerings. For details of my teaching schedules please go to the website www.KatieManitsas.com.au and if you have any particular topics you’d like to see me cover in my upcoming online trainings please email me, I’d love to hear your ideas and requests.