I love to return to the story of the lotus. This beautiful flower that opens and closes petal by petal, perfectly perched on top of the water. Pristine. This is only part of its life. To grow it sets it's home in the mud beneath the murky waters. Despite these conditions and challenges the lotus maintains its strength and moves through the dark waters towards the light. In doing so, it emerges for all to see. Now it is easy to focus on the lotus flower alone. In doing so we can become polarised in how we view the lotus. Just like we can become polarised in how we view ourselves and others. The thing is, the lotus would not exist without the mud. Both are present. Both are essential. Similarly when we bring curiosity to ourselves and others we can see that there is the presence of opposites. That day has the night, dark has light. That we all have strength and vulnerability... that in fact everything has an opposite. All the way down to each atom in our body with a positive and negative charge. Each would not exist without the other. This understanding can soften the polarised way we can see ourselves and the world, which can move us towards more balance. Move us away from seeing things as black or white.
Within our yoga practice we can start to find how opposites can be present together. We can start to find areas of tension and areas of ease. We can notice sensations of heaviness and sensations of lightness. We can find a number of qualities that come together at any moment. We can also create space to discover that we can feel different ways too. We can feel both grateful and sad. We can notice that we can feel angry and be understanding. By broadening the view, we can start to soften the grip.
In our sessions this month, we will look to find opposites in our physical practice. See what it is like to play around with the length of both the inhale and exhale to uplift and calm. We will also explore these ideas within a yoga nidra practice.