Sometimes they don't make any sense either. Why, for instance, do I have to flex my feet exactly? Why do you want me to flatten out my spine on the mat? My body really rebelled at some of these dictates back in the days when I used to hip-hop around different yoga classes, bouncing like a nomad from one class to another week after week without much inspiration. I used to get so bored with the litany of rules on how to move. Who in the world wants to focus on the rotator cuff or the infraspinatus of the shoulder joint? It would be like worrying about the brakes or spark plugs in my engine anytime I take my Mini for a spin in the sunshine, music blaring, sunroof open. Why is the experience not enough? Isn't there enough to see, to feel, to hear, to sense, to simply enjoy without wondering how it's all ticking under the hood? These yoga classes took absolutely all the fun out of what I came here to do in the first place: Move my body! Play. Sense. Discover. Free this body of tensions, feel the touch of my skin hitting air and space.
It is such a fool's game: a mind developing a 'complete' system of movement for a physical body. Are we getting it all backwards, all reversed? That mental intelligence knows more than bodily intelligence when it comes to the body? It would be like my mind knowing best how to digest food or how to metabolize proteins, or heaven forbid, could you imagine a man and woman intellectualizing and theorizing over making their baby? It would be a fiasco! Our species would've died out epochs ago if our minds were in charge of these bodies.
In free breath yoga, there are no man-made, one-size-fits-all rules (see 'Free Breath', November 2014). We follow instructions based on physical laws and maybe, we get to see Universal laws in action. Yes. But. We observe the breath until its rhythm is free of thoughts, emotions, and bodily tensions. Then, the body is able to move of its own accord, at its own pace. We let the body flower and open in its own time, and not a moment before it is ready. We allow the soul, the personality, the mind to embody, to simply marvel in the experience of being in, these meat dresses.