Rhythm and synchronization are concepts employed in music, linguistics, psychology, biology, and physics. Rhythms of life. Rhythm, the patterning of the universe and central to the human body and experience. The primal beat of the drum and indigenous dance has its evolutionary roots in the beat of the heart. Rhythms are found in language, movement, the way we breathe, think and live. Rhythm is all around us, it’s the base of creation, in the rise and fall of the sun, the shift of seasons, the lapping of the waves and the sounds of nature, the inhale and exhale of your breathe. Rhythm is the language of life.
This year seems to have been one endless winter, the memory of the short summer washed away by the pouring winter rain. There was a lot of it. The rainy season and bitter cold, all of which seemed quite fitting in this year of 2021 with all its collective angst, was one of the most brutal winters we have had in a while.
Hands. These hands that hold our nearest and dearest, that propel and reject, these hands that gesture our thoughts, offer connection, these hands that signify our hopes and intentions, and help both create and destroy so much. These hands with which we paint, laugh, dance and pray. Dexterous, powerful hands made so much more mobile by the wrists and arms and the hearts and thoughts they express These hands that make us uniquely human. Our long thumb allows us to firmly grip with strength and fine control.
“All suffering comes from expectation” -Buddha.
Part of the second of the Buddhist Four Noble Truths posits that, while we know suffering exists (1st truth), it is our desires and attachment, our clinging and craving, that are the base causes of this suffering. Expectations, a desired and defined outcome that is often quite different from the reality we find ourselves in. The 3rd truth offers us a contingency plan for dealing with our suffering – detachment and freeing oneself from desire and expectation.
It seems to me that there is a general confusion as to what Restorative Yoga is and equally what is Yin Yoga? So much so that some studios and teachers have not only ceased to define them but unintentionally merge the two, much to the confusion of students. Restorative Yin and Yin Restorative. Surely there is little difference between them and therefore they make natural, compatible partners, a match made in heaven? Both relaxing, both rejuvenating and both soothing for the nervous system. They have become a singular practice. This is of course, not so. Restorative and Yin Yoga may share many similarities, but they are wholly different in lineage and intention.
It is interesting to observe the growing popularity in recent years of this much slower style of yoga, with an increase in the number of Yin Yoga teacher trainings and yin classes across the world but particularly here in Cape Town.