Last night we celebrated at Land Yoga those students who have made a commitment to daily practice. They were invited to a special evening Mysore class guided by all our teachers and followed by a conference where we spoke about When and How to practice and took questions.
The subject of Wonder arose and got me thinking. I shared with my students my belief that Wonder is the Key element in a long termed daily practice. We must come to the mat daily as children, with a sense of unknowing about what might happen, open and able to be surprised and to surprise ourselves. Then even though we do the same poses in the same order at the same time each day, we become aware that each practice is wildly different internally. Over time, it can be common to show up to the mat already predicting what is going to happen. This leaves no room for growth or discovery and is detrimental to the practice.
As with all lessons learned on the mat, this lesson has powerful and important “real life” equivalents. Try just once approaching your day from the moment of waking with a spirit of wonder and curiosity and you will notice an enormous and immediate change to your disposition.
And just as we do ourselves a great disservice in Yoga when practicing without Wonder, so do we do ourselves a disservice when we forget this Key element in our relationships. Many times we think we know the people close to us so well, that we decide in advance what their reactions will be and forget to give them the room to surprise us. This creates major mishaps: we base what information we tell our close ones on these assumptions, limiting their responses and creating a relationship cycle where each person plays a role instead of fully embodying all aspects of themselves, we only hear what we’ve already decided the other will say, missing out on the depth of their understanding of us, or we don’t share at all, thinking it pointless. Approach your relationships with wonder and curiosity no matter how long you’ve known each other you will continue to learn something new and you will live in love.
Wonder is what keeps us from growing old. And the greatest thing about wonder is that it is the truth. The possibilities and potential for ourselves are endless. It is only by a limited sense of wonder and curiosity that we fail to see all that surrounds us. Get curious and your eyes will open and you will be free.