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Atlas, Ruby Slippers, and the Onion

As I delve into the 5000+ year history and philosophy of yoga, I’m learning more about the spiritual aspects and working to develop my own understanding and way to explain my understanding, if someone asks me. In addition to reading assigned texts, I’ve done a little Googling on the topic to read what others have to say. Many, many opinions. I’m not one to adopt another’s beliefs “hook, line and sinker,” preferring to be informed by my own thoughts and experiences as I listen to learn and consider what I am hearing.

Still not feeling a clear grasp of the topic, I asked an experienced yoga teacher how she explains this if someone asks. With openness and clarity, she explained her thoughts and beliefs that she has developed over time through her study and experiences. Another yoga teacher chimed in on an important part of the conversation, “It’s not my responsibility what others choose to think or believe.”

Coming from a career where being responsible for other people was, well, my responsibility, I realized that feeling this level of responsibility for anyone but myself, currently no longer serves me.

I know why I practice. It feels good. It is a release. It’s healthy. It’s fun.

Enter: Atlas.

This morning, I read a list of “wisdom nuggets” a man in his seventies had learned. Number 2 was: “I am not Atlas. I don’t carry the weight of the world on my shoulders.”

Note to self… I’m not responsible for what someone else thinks or believes. I am responsible for my own heart and my own intentions. I can share what is in my heart and my understanding, but it is not my job to convince you to think or believe like me.

Enter: Ruby Slippers

In case you didn’t already know it, “The Wizard of Oz” is a metaphor for life. When it comes to this question of yoga and spirituality. I have the “ruby slippers.”

Note to self: My answer is inside me and I’ve had it all along.

Enter: The Onion

I realized that although I possess my “ruby slippers,” they are buried within the heart of an onion. With each passing moment of presence, the onion is peeled revealing a new depth of understanding.

So, this post may not have ended as you thought it might with a clear explanation of my new philosophy of yoga or an eloquent differentiation of yoga and religion.

Note to self: It took 5000+ years for yoga to evolve into what it is today. Why should I expect to understand this after five weeks of YTT? Honestly, that’s pretty unrealistic.

So, I’m still peeling the onion, knowing that in the heart, lies a sparkling pair of ruby slippers.

Is this your first time on my blog? Click the photo to read my intro post!

Published by retiredgirlbeautifulworld

Admirer of beauty. Seeker of fun. Lover of outdoors. Driver of convertibles. Educator. Writer. Editor. Photographer. Runner. Yogi. Hiker. Paddler. Dancer. Adventurer. Observer.

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