Day 90: The Watcher

Author: bikramyogachick /

Social Media serves many purposes. I find it interesting because I feel like I'm getting a peek inside of my friends heads. Take facebook and twitter for instance. People type in thoughts and hit enter, many times before thinking it through. "Do I really want to post THIS?" Twitter is almost like a strange little collective stream of consciousness. One hundred and forty characters at a time of disjointed thoughts, ideas, opinions, and emotions. If we could truly get into each others heads and hear what goes on in there for a full day we'd probably think our friends crazy and they in turn would be appalled at what goes on in ours!
We are not our thoughts though. That stream of consciousness that flows during the day is not truly who you are. Good thoughts, bad thoughts, songs that rattle through your mind, all of the "noise" is not you.
Yoga helps us to tap into that deeper layer of consciousness. I like to think of it as the ocean. The top of the water is choppy, churning, sometimes violent, always moving. At the bottom of the ocean, where all is still, quiet and deep, lays "the watcher". This is the other part of us that observes. This is the part that takes over during the 90 minute moving meditation that is Bikram. The watcher is what pulls us through a tough class. Our minds, like children, will start to wander. "It's hot in here. My shorts are riding up. That girl has amazing postures. Man she's keeping us in postures forever today. My contacts are jacked up today. Crap I can't balance today. Look at mr. cutie in the back row....." The watcher interrupts the chatter and reminds you to breathe. You are brought back to the room, your focus returns and your mind quiets. If you are like me, the mind does not stay quiet. The 90 minutes is an exercise in constantly returning to focus. When it's all over, we lay in savasana, quiet, sated. If we are lucky, we are able to take that gift and use it the rest of the day. Able to stay calm and focused in other segments of our day, not just yoga.
The mind chatter is what makes us human. The watcher is what reminds us we are also spiritual beings, able to connect with something beautiful and powerful. Able to get out of our own head and find peace, even if just for a moment. Yoga is the gift that brings us closer to that peace.

"When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained."
Mark Twain

~~Bikramyogachick completed 74 days of the 101 day challenge. Due to unforeseen changes in her life, she had to drop out of the challenge, but will never drop out of Bikram Yoga. She has been practicing in Las Vegas for 3 years, blogging for 2 and has completed several 60 day challenges and a 99 day last year. She will post her full bio this coming Saturday. She is VERY proud of all that are continuing down the road to day 101 and is your biggest cheerleader!


Johan said...

Thank you Michelle, this post was truly helpful. And that last quote reminded me of Douglas Coupland's "All families are psychotic". As in, we all think everyone else's family is perfect but ours is psychotic. In reality they all are, we just don't have the visibility.

Yolk E said...

Wow, beautiful post, Michelle. We are not our thoughts.. amen to that.

Lady J said...

Love your post Michelle! I love how you relate our minds to the ocean, there is calmess down there somewhere - we just have to learn how to find it.

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