What is Yoga?

“Most importantly, however, I’ve learned to relax and trust the movement of life. Life has demonstrated its trustworthiness. I’ve learned to willingly go with the flow and thereby enjoy life more fully. Whenever I am worried or fearful, I simply endeavor to relax and become fearless for a moment–if only long enough to take a leisurely breath or two, and either to close my eyes or gaze into the sky and temporarily forget about my problems, the way I did as a child. And then suddenly, or gradually, it doesn’t matter, whatever was worrying me pales in comparison to the actual, ever-present, benevolent immensity of life that is right there, here, staring me in the face; and I come back to a more accurate perception of life, of the dynamics of the situation that was troubling me, and of what to do to resolve it. And this is yoga! Yoga is not merely touching your toes, or standing on your head, or folding yourself into a lotus pretzel. It’s about how you do what you do, and how you live your daily life on a moment-to-moment basis.”

Erich Schiffman, p. xxiv of Yoga: The Spirit and Practice of Moving into Stillness

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