Yoga Teacher Training Journeys

Volcanoes and Yoga

May 25th, 2010 Posted in AFTER Yoga Teacher Training, Yoga in the World, Yoga Teacher Perspectives

If you’re a keen observer of daily events, it would be hard not to rate the recent turmoil affecting air travelers in northern Europe right up there with the major stories of the year. Who would have thought an active volcano in remote Iceland could bring the world’s aviation industry to it’s knees (or should that read ‘ground’) while nature took it’s course, throwing the travel plans of thousands of people into chaos? Is there a link between erupting volcanoes and yoga?

The recent travel chaos caused by the eruption of the Eyjafjallajokull volcano has been described as the greatest disruption to air traffic since the Second World War. The travel arrangements of thousands of people through some of the world’s busiest airports across northern Europe and the UK simply came to a halt. Airlines were unable to fly for fear of a combination of engine malfunction and aircraft damage, with the industry unable to predict how long travel would be affected due to intense plumes of ash in the sky. What a reminder of our vulnerability and susceptibility to unforeseen climatic events!

We are all aware there’s ultimately a cost of human endeavour impacting on the environment. To think such an occurrence as an exploding volcano would play havoc with modern day transportation to such a stunning extent is intriguing to say the least. Turmoil such as this happens in part because of the unexpected. We are never able to predict with certainty when things will go wrong. Yoga offers the practitioner a path to managing and accepting disruption and imbalance from unexpected change. Yoga allows us to embrace rather than escape from these moments of ‘mini turmoil’.

Yoga delivers a sense of calm and inner stillness by connecting our mind, body and spirit. Just think how your mind is still and focused after an hour or two on the mat! Yoga practice and yoga retreat offer a path to inner peace and peace of mind and body is as close as a regular practice.

Yoga offers a doorway into inner stillness to bring life into balance. Yoga also offers strength and direction to deal with events which threaten balance and harmony. Yogis know we needn’t endure inner turmoil even when our outer world descends into chaos and confusion.

One way to bring inner stillness is to engage in a yoga retreat and enjoy a week long program of yoga, rest, meditation and cleansing diet which can do wonders towards achieving balance and harmony. This is particularly relevant when the stress of daily routine begins to take a toll on our general state of wellbeing.

We have no control over nature. What really matters is how we meet the demands of changing external circumstances. Yoga practice helps keep ourselves in balance with our physical and emotional environments especially when our outer world is in turmoil. The inner stillness that comes through yoga is a powerful and accessible path to stability and harmony.

We sympathise with the tens of thousands of air passengers stranded in the recent crisis. The likelihood is that such an event will soon forgotten, to be replaced with a new set of challenging circumstances. Let us remember as life presents such challenges, not to fight change but accept what is. Let us meet challenge and change with love and surrender and use our practice of yoga to restore and maintain inner peace and stillness.

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