Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Meeting aversion

Yoga Sutra 2.3
Attachment may be the cause of our suffering, but aversion is the flip side of the coin, an attachment in reverse, a clinging to not wanting, and thus pushing away, that only compounds our suffering. As with everything thought the key is to notice and to welcome. Welcome the thing that creates aversion as well as the aversion itself.

How often does aversion turn up on the mat for you? Yoga practice is called practice because it is where we can mindfully practise all that we need to get skilled at in order to meet life with equanimity. And sure enough, aversion can also turn up in our yoga, just as much as our love for it does.

Ever been in class and not liked the particular class the teacher is delivering? Too slow, too strong? Something about it was not what you Like about doing yoga?  That is aversion. But did you ever stop to ask yourself, "What is it that I am resisting? Why do I not like this?"

Were gentle movements presented that did not give you the sensation you crave from yoga stretching, or strength and weight bearing to build your fitness?

Or was the class strong, fast-paced and demanding, unlike the gentle practice you prefer?

Perhaps your favourite teacher didn't turn up today and aversion towards change turned up.

Or you don't like meditation, and guess what, today the teacher is doing a long meditation!

Or did the teacher include in the sequence that particular pose you hate? Or ask you to do something that you really didn't feel like doing, not that it was dangerous or anything, just somehow confronting, aversion was there?

How fabulous it is when this happens, what an opportunity! If aversion turns up, could you welcome it and see what the aversion itself could teach you? The recognition and welcoming of aversion and opening to its message is yoga.

Of course it might have a message that this pose done that way could be dangerous for you. Aversion welcomed, grateful for message received, heeded, do a modification.

Or it may be that there is something underlying that you need to also welcome and explore in order to find the freedom you crave.

What are you resisting, and what is its message?