“Let yourself sink into the gap between your thoughts, they are like chains, linking, but with the small gaps in between,” the young, calm yoga instructor suggests. I can’t help it…my thoughts are more like flames chasing each other…You have to appreciate the metaphors, though, and I really love this instructor! But sometimes, during yoga, a spark appears in my thoughts and it just takes flame, so I watch it, amused. My worries gone, my thoughts unthreatening, sometimes they represent ideas, and I really should go with them. They delight me. I do not want to throw them back. So, I just pretend I am counting to ten as suggested, and ridding myself of thoughts, all the while, chuckling inwardly at how I am fooling them all. 🙂
I decided quite a while ago to embrace my thoughts, after worthless attempts to empty them. Sure, I’ve tried. I read a “Buddha Bliss” book on meditation that suggested visualizing each thought as a fish that just landed in my hands, and letting it go into the pond of …. pond of, relaxation, I guess? It did help since I was going through a tough emotional time. In several ways, though, I have become more able to box up disturbing thoughts and realize when it is time to just let go, to just accept that, hey, it is what it is! Obviously, sitting in yoga class, I can’t get my son a job or get my bills paid, can’t do anything about my ex-husband and his mess or the things in my life that I want to happen. Might as well let that all go, and I do. Those thoughts become replaced by higher-level thoughts, more blissful thoughts. Well, they are to me, anyhow. Here is an example from a year ago:
*The instructor tells us to count back from ten when a thought pops into the mind and let it go. IF another one comes, count backward from ten again. So, I try. Then, I notice how my yoga towel is the color of sand, and that being on it is like being at the beach, no, it’s like being on Mars! Isn’t Mars sandy? If not, it at least has a lot of that sandy color. I almost chuckle at myself and start the countdown again. Then I think about a rocket launch countdown, and while we’re on that topic, let’s circle back to Mars! Matt Damon is going to Mars in the upcoming movie, The Martian. Oh, I have to see that movie! I love Matt Damon, he is awesome! Thinking of which, I loaded that book on my Kindle, I ought to get around to reading it before the movie. So, this yoga towel is a flat landscape of Mars. Then I start thinking of the movie, Interstellar. They are along similar lines, but not the same. Each unique in its own right. I am so excited to read The Martian and see the movie. Then I start thinking of Matt Damon and his movie, Elysium, and the message he was trying to convey. Back to a plank, and I see the flat, sandy landscape. Yes, I realize Mars is probably more rocky than that, and I may be quite wrong about the landscape. Doesn’t bother me. But I make a note to self to read more about space and the other planets. Good plan, I tell myself, almost chuckling again as the instructor does another count back from ten. It’s all good! I am such a rebel.
So, here I am, being me,enjoying the heck out of my yoga practice and the thoughts it is inspiring. I’ve gotta be me, right? And that, my friends, is healthy thinking, brought to you by the benefits of yoga. Shhh…Don’t tell anyone. They might find my rebellion disrespectful. 😉