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Yoga Behind the Veil...A Journey of Self Discovery

Yoga Behind the Veil...A Journey of Self Discovery

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Yoga Behind the Veil...A Journey of Self Discovery

Lunghezza:
150 pagine
2 ore
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Dec 13, 2012
ISBN:
9781301762064
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

One woman embarks on a thirty day experiment to uncover the mysteries of yoga. What accounts for its enduring popularity 5,000 years after its first appearance in this world? Is yoga a series of exercises, a way of life, or a cult?
Is there any meaning to the bowing, chanting, and the group nap at the end of every practice session?

Thirty days to uncover 5,000 years of secrets. Along the way, she journeys through the past, the present, and the infinite future awaiting us all behind the veil.

Editore:
Pubblicato:
Dec 13, 2012
ISBN:
9781301762064
Formato:
Libro

Informazioni sull'autore

Lynn Wood writes about the intersection of the supernatural with everyday life. Where does reality end and fantasy begin? What is truth? What is faith? The Awakening Series tells the story of a young woman's discovery of a past life, a past love, an ancient enemy, and a people who await her return to rescue them from a threatening darkness. Written for a young adult audience, the story will appeal to all readers who enjoy the majesty of an epic fairytale, the eternal struggle between good and evil, and a love story that spans millennia. The Firstborn Series explores the eternal connection between angels and mankind. The Archangel Michael and his fallen brother Lucifer, share their opposing views on man's history, the apocalypse predicted in the Book of Revelation, and man's ultimate fate. Both a treatise on faith and a fast paced suspense thriller, the series will appeal to adults who like mysteries with a supernatural undertone. Her latest book, Yoga Behind the Veil, explores the mystery behind the enduring popularity of yoga and how it can serve as a launching point for a journey of self discovery and unveil the secrets of the infinite.

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Anteprima del libro

Yoga Behind the Veil...A Journey of Self Discovery - L.M. Wood

Yoga: Behind the Veil…

A Journey of Self Discovery

L. M. Wood

Copyright 2012 by L. M. Wood

Smashwords Edition

Titles by L. M. Wood

NONFICTION:

Yoga: Behind the Veil…A Journey of Self Discovery

FICTION:

Of Angels and Other Divinities:

Michael, Beloved of God: Prince of Heaven

Dancing with the Devil

Of Love, Magic and Forever:

The Awakening Series:

Book 1: Awakening

Book 2: Choose

Prologue:

I was on a mission. Thirty days to solve a mystery that already endured for five thousand years. Given the odds against me, I wasn’t particularly confident about my chances for success. The secret I sought to reveal? Yoga. I wanted to discover exactly what it was about yoga that made people slightly uncomfortable at the thought of its practice. Study after study affirmed its positive benefits to both mind and body. A person at any level of fitness could benefit from its practice. So where did the ambiguity come from? Was it simply yoga’s ancient roots in the unfamiliar culture of the east and the fact that many of the terms used in its practice were still known by their original Sanskrit names? Or was its cult-like reputation more a result of its gurus, chanting, new-age music, candlelit studios and sex scandals? Not to mention the group-nap everyone took at the end of a session and all the bowing to each other with hands in prayer position, repeating ‘the light in me sees and honors the light in you’. Of course the repetition takes too long in English, so yogis use the Sanskrit version, Namaste.

I’d been a casual yogi for a few years. I attended classes at a local studio two to three times a week and patted myself on the back for doing something good for my body, and also for being willing to try something outside my comfort zone. The practice of yoga was trendy. It brought a little new-age hip into my otherwise bland and generally conservative lifestyle. There was no denying the practice of yoga came with a certain connotation attached to it though it was sometimes hard to tell if this particular nuance was good or bad. Even today when there was a yoga studio at almost every strip mall across the country, there were still people who gave you that look when you admitted to being a practitioner, as if to say, Oh, you’re one of them.

I wasn’t certain what exactly the look meant, but there was no denying there was some undertone connected to yoga, an inference that somehow wasn’t attached to other popular exercise movements like kick-boxing or Zumba. The strange thing about yoga, whatever the it was, wasn’t only perceived from the outside looking in. Even the casual practitioner sensed its presence. I suspected it was the awareness of something more, something inexplicable occurring inside of them that sent the casual practitioners scurrying back to the relative safety of Pilates.

The idea for my yoga experiment began on a recent trip to the Middle East. My husband and I became friendly with another couple on the same tour. Somehow the topic of yoga came up. When I admitted I was a practitioner, my counterpart in the other couple made the slightest gesture of distaste. I called her out on her reaction and she smilingly admitted she tried a few classes and didn’t mind the physical exercises, but she didn’t like the chanting and the religious connotation attached to yoga practice. I laughed, admitted I did indeed chant and bowed to my fellow practitioners when the occasion called for it but wasn’t particularly put off by either. The moment struck me though, and I realized I wasn’t imagining the sometimes weird vibes associated with the practice of yoga.

Before leaving on the same trip I purchased a few books to read on the long flight. One of them was a classic yoga manual written decades earlier by and about an eastern guru. In it, the guru advised in order to understand the heart of yoga one had to establish a personal practice outside the classroom. His reference to there being something to discover beyond the physical practice of the various poses affirmed my growing suspicion. However, if the guru was to be believed, I would be unable to uncover yoga’s true meaning until I made a deeper, more personal commitment to my practice.

I mulled over the idea. Though I was an on-again, off-again practitioner for the past few years, I wasn’t convinced I knew enough poses to develop a personal practice. What if I didn’t do them correctly? Would I still be able to achieve the result I sought? I brushed aside my initial instinctive resistance. Who cared if my postures weren’t perfect? No one was going to see me. Wasn’t that the point of a personal practice? I concluded my lack of physical expertise with the various poses wouldn’t interfere with my more esoteric search. I was fairly certain I knew enough not to do myself any serious damage. I could just stick to the basics. Half an hour each morning was all the guru said I needed. Where would I find the time? I gave my latest excuse the instant dismissal it deserved. Thirty minutes. No one was that busy. If she was, she had bigger problems to unravel than the mystery of yoga.

I somewhat guiltily dismissed as unimportant one little piece of the guru’s counsel. In fact, I planned to fly in the face of it. The guru suggested a personal practice should only be launched under the careful guise of an experienced teacher. I excused my deviation for a couple of reasons. Number one, adding a second person to this experiment for a thirty minute, daily practice would not only make the scheduling ridiculous, but also expensive. Plus, I figured the whole point of a personal practice was for it to be personal. If I looked to a teacher for guidance, wouldn’t the practice become less me-directed and more teacher directed? Finally, allowances had to be made for cultural and time differences. Eastern culture was big on gurus in general, not so much in the very individually driven west. The guru began teaching back in the 1930’s. Times had changed. I decided to wing it.

It took me a few weeks to actually dive in. Thirty days. I resolved to give my personal experiment thirty days. I’m not sure where I came up with that magic number, but a few weeks didn’t seem like long enough to discover the secrets to an ancient mystery. I figured a month would tell me if my new regime was working or not. By then surely my newly discovered self- discipline would uncover some great revelation. If it took a lifetime of practice before one was initiated into the true secrets of yoga, I probably didn’t have what it took to be a real yogi…

Day 1

A New Beginning…

4:34 a.m.

I rolled over and closed my eyes, hoping I could fall back asleep for a few more minutes. I knew my wish was likely a futile one. I was anxious. I had a five o’clock appointment… a.m. not p.m. Not that anyone would notice if I was late. My appointment was with myself, and my yoga mat, and whatever or whoever was waiting for me out there beyond my mat.

4:37…

4:40….

4:47….

5:00!!!

I reached over and quickly silenced the alarm so my husband could sleep an extra hour. He didn’t have to be at work until ten thirty. On our wedding day we both repeated the same vows, ‘in good times and in bad’, but this particular five a.m. wake-up call was my personal cross to bear. I had to be at work by eight. If I was going to keep my thirty day commitment to myself I needed to find a time when there would be no interruptions, no conflicts and no excuses. I figured first thing in the morning was my best option. Besides, the guru suggested an early morning practice. So I counted backwards and after tallying up my morning obligations, backed right into five am. Four forty five would probably have made for a more relaxed morning, but I just couldn’t face the thought of seeing a four on the red digital numbers of our bedside clock when I climbed out of bed in the morning. Five I figured I could do.

I comforted myself with the reminder I wasn’t alone. Other people started their days at five a.m.: doctors, nurses and various shift work professionals. Early morning news anchors were likely facing big red two’s on the face of their clocks when their morning alarms went off. It was all a matter perspective, of setting priorities, and self-discipline. I was a professional. I was a mother. My life was filled with conflicting priorities and sometimes excruciating self-discipline. I understood both. I could do this. I rolled out of bed.

As a precaution, and aware of my tight schedule, I laid out both my yoga and work clothes the evening before. My new schedule didn’t allow time for rummaging around searching for something appropriate to wear. If this experiment was going to prove successful, I would have to become more organized. I didn’t want to turn on a light so as not to disturb my husband, so I dressed in the dark. Fortunately yoga wear wasn’t too complicated.

I was both a little surprised and intimated to discover how dark it actually was outside. I guess I assumed I would see hints of dawn on the horizon and take comfort from the knowledge the rest of the world was not far behind where I was venturing. I was just getting an early start. But this gloom was not the ebbing night of predawn, but the pitch black dark of midnight. For some reason it was always scarier to venture out at night. To set off in a new and unfamiliar direction was even more so. I was a morning person. I typically chose to travel by day. Nights were for sleeping, or during the winter when the sun set early, curling up in front of the fireplace with a good book.

It wasn’t winter. It was the middle of July. I wondered if it would be even darker at five am in December. I was hoping to find out. By then I longed to look back on these first mornings, with all their accompanying struggles, and laugh at my former, weaker version of myself. Because by then it would be easy. By then I would be jumping out of bed at four thirty, with no need of the alarm because I would be so disciplined and so eager to begin another day with morning yoga practice. But I wasn’t there yet, I reminded myself sternly. December was one hundred and thirty some days away. This was day one. I hadn’t accomplished anything yet.

Changed and ready I tiptoed down the hall towards the stairs, heard our chocolate lab scratching at our youngest son’s door to get in on the fun, and stopped to let him out. He greeted me eagerly, and then decided to go in search of my husband, his usual morning companion. It took me a few moments to convince him it wasn’t time yet for his morning walk. Confused but curious he reluctantly abandoned his attempt to force open our bedroom door and preceded me down the stairs into the dark and silent house. I retrieved my mat from where I left it propped up in the corner the previous evening and passed through the French doors and out onto the screened porch.

The sky wasn’t any brighter out here. I turned on the overhead light. It was too bright but it felt weird to practice in the dark so I left the light on. I spread out my mat while the dog pranced playfully around me. I admonished him to sit. He did. No, not on the mat, I corrected

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