“Keep your focus.”

“Keep your focus.”

IMG_0508.JPG

My dear teacher’s advice once when I strayed into fretting over the actions and behavior of others.

“Keep your focus.”

Our practice is to deal with our own stuff, physical, mental/emotional, intellectual. Over and over again witnessing what arises, what we aren’t seeing, our tendencies to hash into the same thoughts and behavior, cortisol squeezing down those paths like rain water flowing through the grooves of well-worn tire tracks.

In class over and over as a student I’m pulled out of that rut and into the now of yoga with his strength of will driving me to watch, do, let go, to overcome the drift of attention into  habits of avoidance and attachment that are like old familiar clothes that have long lost their appeal but happen to be there close at hand and ready to wear.

Sometimes the universe gives us great mountains of concerns to fear and fret over, relationships to grieve, wrong paths and mistakes to regret. “Keep your focus.” Yoga is the stilling of our own consciousness. Ultimately we can’t do it for anyone else. Those pains can provoke me to get  past the patterns of laziness and fear to sweep the floor in my practice all the more fiercely and intensely fearlessly until even the bare floor shines with the sincere effort. “Do your own work. Then step back” the Bhagavad Gita advises and my teacher models again and again.

Infinite Gratitude to my Dear Teacher,  who teaches me ways to travel from darkness to light, 

Manouso Manos, on his birthday.

 

 “Diamonds are hard and clear. It is their property of clarity that gives us the clue. Clarity is also the great defining characteristic of wisdom. We are seeking to cultivate wisdom, to transform mental dexterity or cleverness, which all people possess in some degree, into the penetrating clear light of wisdom. In order to achieve this, we have to toil in the mines, to separate dross, which is false, from what is precious because it is true.” —Yogācārya Srī B.K.S. Iyengar