Our Embodied Experience
“The goal is to be relaxed without being slack, and alive and extended without being stiff. This gives us a sense of firmness and weight, and we feel ourselves properly balanced in space. There’s a sense of solidity without being fixed; at the same time we have a light touch, because we’re more comfortable with ourselves.
There’s a direct feeling of groundedness when we live inside our bodies this way. We can now deal with the world in a straightforward and confident way. Once we settle into ourselves, we can reflect on what we care about and how we can live our purpose in life.” ~Richard Heckler
When we learn to listen to and trust our body, we develop our sense of interoception (the sense of something moving within us). When we can feel our muscles moving, we can learn how to control that movement to make it smooth, graceful, pain-free, aligned. That sense of control over our body leads to a greater sense of connection with our body and a sense of wholeness.
We have greater pain tolerance and are more able to focus on things outside of ourselves when we feel that our actions can change how we feel. We then project that sense of agency out into our life. Our actions affect our body, and how we live our life.
Yoga teaches us how to become aware of our sensations and movements. Postures and movements on the mat create strength and flexibility to hold our own while also opening ourselves to the world, and to focus our mind so we can be present to others and not lost in our own thoughts. The more comfortable we are in our own body and with ourselves, the easier it is to offer our gifts to the world and to accept the gifts of others.