esther m palmer

I use yoga for self study, but it's not the only tool I have. What makes one tool more fitting than another? Why choose yoga, not gyrotonic, not pilates, not some other mode of movement?

When I started this post with the above consideration, I didn't finish writing immediately because I wanted a bit more time to let the question sit and my thoughts to collect. That was six months ago. I did forget about the post, but never about the questions.

It shouldn't surprise me, but it does, that I am in a wildly different place today than I was in July. 6 months ago, my answer to why yoga was along the lines of "I like it" and a bunch of other text-booky type stuff. All those things are still true. I love practicing yoga. The practices transform body and mind, and with them, how you live your life.

And, truly, there are many systems that can do this --the Alexander Technique has done the same for me in different ways and with different results-- so I don't have an answer for why anyone other than me should practice yoga.

I'm letting go of the need to tell you why you should do yoga because I don't think it's my place to tell you. I can share my own discoveries, and tell you why I choose yoga.

I choose yoga because I love it, in that 'unconditional love' kinda way. Here's what I love about it:

yoga doesn't judge me
yoga doesn't push me
yoga isn't a person or a school or a dogma
yoga moves me and lets me move
yoga lights up my awareness of my electrical body
yoga helps me understand my emotions and work through them so that they don't control my decisions
yoga helps me understand others' perspectives and view them with openness and compassion
yoga meets me where I am, always
yoga has been there all along, and yoga is helping me to uncover yoga
yoga encourages me to recognize others, how they teach me, how they love me, how they are just like me, and how they are different from me
yoga recognizes the fact that each of us is unique
yoga recognizes that we are infinitesimally small... and large, and same... and different
yoga connects me to others
yoga lets me share yoga

yoga is not finished with me, but this list is... for today.

Merry Christmas! Hari om, om tat sat!


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