Why Yoga?

From the acclaimed book, Fire of Love,
by Aadil Palkhivala

“As yoga teachers, our central practice is to observe everything we teach – every method, every action, every word – and ask ourselves, ‘Is this approach merely a means to achieving a straighter line, a better look, a deeper pose – or is it more? Is it helping my students to live and love their life more? Am I merely teaching sweaty flowing sequences and perfectly aligned postures, or am I a teacher whose students are learning to love more abundantly?’

Perhaps the greatest service we can perform for our students is to remind them to find their true calling in life, the call of love. We must teach asana in a manner that assists our students on this essential quest. Backbends open the groins, abdominals, intercostals, and armpits, yet their higher purpose is to open the Heart Center. Teach backbends with this higher intention, thereby helping your students develop receptivity to the quiet voice of the heart. Inversions reverse blood flow, enhance circulation, and flush toxins, yet their loftier aim in the yogic design is to cultivate sensitivity. Remind your students to attune themselves to this heightened sensitivity after doing inversions, and then use their newly acquired powers of discernment to separate what is essential from what is merely urgent. Only when we lovingly take care of what is essential can we live with love and die without regret.”

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