When I step onto my mat, I take myself on a journey inward. Yoga is not just a way to move my body; it is also my spiritual practice. I reconnect to myself deeply, and most of the time, if you watched me practice, you would see that my eyes are closed. This helps me to keep the focus on what’s going on for me internally – What am I feeling? Where do I want to create more space? What connections can I make between my body and my mind?
Recently, I have been practicing in two spaces that have mirrors, and this was a first for me. In the beginning, it threw me off balance – literally. I’d be searching for a drishti (a focal point), the small hole in the window blinds at my old studio now gone, and I’d see moving parts of the other people in the class, and sometimes, if I was close enough, I’d see me. As I’ve gotten used to it, my own eye is my best drishti for poses like eagle, wrapped up in myself, focusing on the one eye that is visible, a reminder to myself that I will always be there.
I’ve been thinking about mirrors a lot lately, not just because they are becoming part of my practice. I’ve been thinking about how we are not only mirrors for ourselves, but about how we are mirrors for others.
I’ve spent days trying to find the words to explain this, because in my heart I feel it so deeply.
It is so easy for each one of us to feel incredibly alone in our life – in our day-to-day struggles and triumphs, both big and small. It is so easy to tell ourselves that no one else could possibly understand, that no one else has experienced something quite like this, that no one else is like us, and therefore that something must be wrong with us.
We are so good at weaving these stories for ourselves, at closing our eyes and bringing our practice inward, that sometimes it’s not until we feel so off balance that we’re about to topple over that we open our eyes. When we do, what do we see?
When we have been lucky enough to find our community, our tribe, we open our eyes and see that we are surrounded by love and support, and that we are absolutely not alone. We reach out, we find the courage to speak our fears, our desires, our deepest hurts, and we find that we are not alone.
Being a mirror for another can be a powerful act of community and spiritual communion. We can do this in each and every action and reaction that we have, with ourselves and with others. Holding space for one another so that we all come to learn that we are not alone is what gives us the strength to take the next step, and the next, and the next, on this journey that at times feels painful and overwhelming but is always, no matter what, a blessing.
Some questions to think about as your journey through your day…
How am I a mirror for myself?
How am I a mirror for others?
What makes me feel most alone?
Where can I go to find my community, my tribe?
Peace, Love, and Wellness,