Well today I get the opportunity to share yoga with some young teenagers at the local Junior High School. I am curious to see how they will receive the practice. I am expecting they will not be familiar with the full scope of yoga but more likely have only been exposed to the physical practices. I feel passionate about broadening our understanding of yoga to include the following basic elements:
1. VALUE SYSTEM
These four elements come from the 8 limbs of ashtanga yoga which is the framework for yoga authored by the mysterious Patanjali. It is never a bad idea to explore our value system, subtle violations of our own principles can lead to stress, anxiety and depression. Basic values of honesty and non-violence need to be practiced every day. In our world these things are not always reflected and there may be encouragement for the young and old (and everyone in between) to veer from those values. Politicians, while on the public stage, are just people who often fall in to a trap of breaching basic values as a means to an end. The end, however, does not justify the means and there is a price to pay when we violate our own integrity. Returning again and again to our values will be a guiding light that will inform the decisions we make on a daily basis.
Yoga is a system to support a happy and healthy life. Adhere to your values, learn to relax your body and concentrate your mind and then practice meditation regularly. These things will surely bring health and happiness to your life.