Meditation Column: Practicing yoga can help in every way

Yoga is simply stretching and moving your body in such a way, throughout your day, bringing health and vitality.

By Patrick Kelly

Yoga, simply defined… defining yoga is not all that simple. For some, it means a connectedness, an experience of conscious connection to the one ultimate existence that we all share. For others, it is a routine of exercises and stretches that improve the overall quality of their lives. And for others still, a focus of meditation that leads them to mindful, present conscious awareness. An awareness of our true state of being, that is not negatively impacted by the workings of our often programmed conditioned minds. Researchers believe that yoga has been practiced by humans for 5,000 to 10,000 years. There is not a single sport on the planet that does not include yoga practices in its preparatory workouts.

Yoga. The mere word has some of us running for cover, just another form of exercise for us to avoid and an athletic ability we cannot obtain. That is all mind stuff. Yoga is simply stretching and moving your body in such a way, throughout your day, bringing health and vitality. Keep in mind, as with anything, there are different levels of yoga. Basically, yoga means stretch. You could try some yoga.

For many, yoga practices are a powerful and useful meditation. A wise Yogi once said, “Every movement is as a statement.”

Practitioners focus their attention on the pose (stretch), while they observe their stream of thought; bringing their attention back to the pose if their mind pulls them into thinking. The Yogi practices simple yoga moves throughout their day. During everyday tasks, they add a little stretch to their moment, meditating on the sensation of the movement. So often, we have a tendency to move uncomfortably, awkwardly with grunts and groans because our bodies are so stiff from lack of motion. Bring some grace into your movements.

A Simple mediation. Throughout your day, here and there, when it comes to mind, bring a little yoga into the moment. As you bend to pick up something or reach up to grab something off the shelf, take the opportunity to add a comfortable stretch to the movement. Allow the stretch to become a momentary focus of meditation, focusing on the sensation while observing your mind. Enhance your moments by bringing in some yoga. It’s a new day! Your day! ••

For more on this topic and meditation practices, visit wakingupwithpatrick.com.