Routine as the Touchstone to Deepening your Practice

Home again from vacation.  The bags are unpacked, the laundry clean and put away, meals planned for the week, and all of us have returned to the routine of school and work.

Routine which may become monotonous, does provide a stable ground upon which to rest.  We know what is expected of us, and how best to manage our strength and energies within it.  Routine, which can sometimes lead to boredom, also provides an opportunity for renewal and deeper introspection.

Take for example the sun salutations.  We know the routine:

  • Tadasana
  • Utanasana
  • Adho Mukha Svanasana
  • Plank
  • Bhujhangasana/Urdhva Mukha Svanasana
  • Utanasana
  • Tadasana

As we breath and move from asana to asana we gain strength and clarity.  Each asana is a meditation in and of itself.  And yet each asana leads to the next asana, deepening the meditation.  As the flow becomes more and more familiar, we begin to deepen our practice and our understanding of ourselves.

Sure, there is room for boredom.  All the room your are willing to allow yourself.  As soon as you mentally jump ship (so to speak) the asanas no longer provide the foundation for the meditation, and become no more than an aerobic exercise.   The true gift of the sun salutation lies in its ability to link our breath, movement and mind into a heart opening practice.  One in which we put aside all of our “to-do” lists, and allow ourselves to experience a greater sense of well-being and connectedness.

And there is great room for enhancement and variation.  All the other asanas can be incorporated into the sun salutations.  Routine becomes enhanced, and yet grounded in a deeper practice.

So, as we return again to the routine of daily living, I find myself embracing my sun salutation practice as a touchstone for renewal and re-entry.  May it be so for you as well.

Shalom & Namaste,

Diana

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