Here are some of the readings I like to read during Yin Yoga. Please feel free to send me some of your favorites!
The Goal of Yoga, by Rachel Brathen
(No, it’s not the Handstand).
The yoga pose is not the goal. Becoming flexible is not the goal. Standing in your handstand is not the goal.
The goal is to create space where you were once stuck.
To unveil the layers of protection you’ve built around your heart.
To appreciate your body and become aware of the mind and the noise it creates.
To make peace with who you are.
The goal is to love...You.
Come to your yoga mat to feel; not to accomplish.
Shift your focus and your heart will grow.
Write it on your heart, by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Write it on your heart that every day is the best day of the year.
He is rich who owns the day, and no one owns the day
who allows it to be invaded with fret and anxiety.
Finish every day and be done with it.
You have done what you could.
Some blunders and absurdities, no doubt crept in.
Forget them as soon as you can, tomorrow is a new day;
begin it well and serenely, with too high a spirit
to be cumbered with your old nonsense.
This new day is too dear,
with its hopes and invitations,
to waste a moment on the yesterdays.
Let It Go, by Danna Faulds
Let go of the ways you thought life would unfold, the holding of plans or dreams or expectations – Let it all go.
Save your strength to swim with the tide.
The choice to fight what is here before you now will only result in struggle, fear, and desperate attempts to flee from the very energy you long for.
Let go. Let it all go and flow with the grace that washes through your days whether you received it gently or with all your quills raised to defend against invaders.
Take this on faith; the mind may never find the explanations that it seeks, but you will move forward nonetheless.
Let go, and the wave’s crest will carry you to unknown shores, beyond your wildest dreams or destinations.
Let it all go and find the place of rest and peace, and certain transformation.
Clearing, by Martha Postelweight
Do not try to save the whole world or do anything grandiose. Instead, create a clearing in the dense forest of your life and wait there patiently, until the song that is your life falls into your own cupped hands and you recognize and greet it. Only then will you know how to give yourself to this world so worth of rescue.
I Worried, by Mary Oliver
I worried a lot. Will the garden grow, will the rivers flow in the right direction, will the earth turn as it was taught, and if not how shall I correct it?
Was I right, was I wrong, will I be forgiven, can I do better?
Will I ever be able to sing, even the sparrows can do it and I am, well, hopeless.
Is my eyesight fading or am I just imagining it, am I going to get rheumatism, dementia?
Finally I saw that worrying had come to nothing. And gave it up. And took my old body and went out into the morning, and sang.
Within The Body You are Wearing, by Robert Hall
Within the body you are wearing, now inside the bones and beating in the heart, lives the one you have been searching for so long.
But you must stop running away and shake hands, the meeting doesn’t happen without your presence, your participation.
The same one waiting for you there is moving in the trees, glistening on the water, growing in the grasses and lurking in the shadows you create. You have nowhere to go. The marriage happened long ago. Behold your mate.
A Blessing for the Senses, by John O’Donohue
May your body be blessed.
May you realize that your body is a faithful and beautiful friend of your soul.
And may you be peaceful and joyful and recognize that your senses are sacred thresholds.
May you realize that holiness is mindful, gazing, feeling, hearing, and touching.
May your senses gather you and bring you home. May your senses always enable you to celebrate the universe and the mystery and possibilities of your presence here.
May the Eros of the Earth bless you.
Do everything with a mind that lets go. Do not expect any praise or reward. If you let go a little, you will have a little peace. If you let go a lot, you will have a lot of peace. If you let go completely, you will know complete peace and freedom. Your struggles with the world will have come to an end.
Go climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.
Ralph Waldo Emmerson
Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.
Out beyond ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing there is a field. I'll meet you there.