Friday, June 13, 2014

Why Do You Step onto the Yoga Mat?

Yoga: Art of Transformation Exhibit, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, California, May 2014

Why do you step onto the yoga mat? For joy? For peace? For clarity? For healing? For spiritual awakening? For vanity? For a buzz? To feel dialed in? To relieve stress? All of these are valid reasons. Any one of them could serve as the catalyst for profound change.

On the yoga mat, you encounter all five of your bodies, and enter into intimate relationships with each of them. You realize that functions and faculties previously taken for granted are, in fact, miraculous siddhis. On the yoga mat, you also come face to face with your own shadow. All of your fear, anger, grief and confusion will rise up. And you release each one into the fire, to be transmuted into something greater. For as long as there is light, there will be shadow. So if you embrace it, you will have your own inexhaustible source of clean energy.

On the yoga mat, you realize (sooner or later) that you are kneeling at the throne of the Universe itself, and holding an offering basket in your hands. This basket contains the vastness of all space, together with the richness of all life on this and every other planet.

In that moment of revelation, you will understand that you are both offering and receiving this gift. But you will not be able to explain the moment to anyone. Ever. However many times you try. 

Yes, stepping onto the yoga mat, you triangulate these three great encounters (i.e., with your bodies, your shadow and the universe itself). This triangulation forms a dynamic matrix, through which human and divine pour into each other ceaselessly, and consciously, transforming both present and future. 

This is the truth.

-- Richard Power

My new (ninth) book User's Guide to Human Incarnation, The Yoga of Primal Reality is available now from