In Sanskrit many words have a whole set of meanings. For instance, some of the meanings of the word yoga include: junction, union, putting together, connection and relation.
Even when we think about yoga from the most superficial perspective, just looking at the body, we can see that it makes sense to use the idea of relationship when we think about the physical aspect of yoga because it brings up ideas such as creating a harmonious relationship between:
- the bones in the body
- bones, tendons, muscles and tissues
- nervous system and physical apparatus
- inhalation and exhalation
- breath and movement
Even more interesting is to notice that in yoga we are also cultivating efficient interrelationships between:
- breath, body and mind
- breath, mind and emotions
- attitude and action
- intention, attitude and actions
As we deepen our inquiry we cannot fail to notice that yoga is about the relationship that we have with ourselves because sooner or later the tools of yoga will help us notice:
- the stories we tell ourselves (that we end up believing)
- how those stories influence our thinking, actions and emotions
- how those stories filter our perceptions
- how our thoughts and stories create assumptions and expectations
Moreover, as we continue exploring in more directions we come to realize that the relationships we have established with ourselves interpenetrate with the relationships that we have cultivated with the people and the environment around us.
So the next time you think that in yoga you are just trying to stretch your muscles, consider inviting yourself to expand your definition so that you can access the full depth of the practice that will enable you to savor the complete experience of developing inner-connectedness and then moving from that inner-connectedness to interconnectedness.
Peace and joy!