Who am I to teach Yoga?
I never thought I'd teach, when I started practicing yoga.
The teachers displayed an easeful patience that I felt incapable of. I was often irritable and quick to anger.
When I started practicing yoga I looked down on the idea of being 'just' a fluffy bubble soft-skilled cooing yoga teacher. My ego was stronger then, than it is now, and it prevented me from valuing aspects of life accurately. My ego insisted I have a 'serious', 'important' career. One that was scholarly, with capitalistic reward.
Yet as much as I looked down on the profession, I also felt I wasn't good enough, or healthy enough for it.
Yoga teachers seemed to enjoy interacting with lots of people, whereas I had difficulty showing up as my real (un-defended) self to connect. I avoided intimacy, mainly so the secret of my eating disorder wouldn't be discovered.
The truth is: when I started practicing yoga I was in crisis, where I lived for 12 years.
As such, I was too insane to arrogantly put myself in a position to guide others the way yoga teachers do. Where to, misery?
I had nothing figured out. In fact, I had learned a great many lessons incorrectly. Things I would have to recognize, unlearn, re-learn correctly, and crystallize through action, before I even so much as had my head on straight.
So no, I Most certainly did not consider I'd become a yoga teacher.
I was just barely surviving, and the state of creation the teachers demonstrated seemed foreign and impossible.
But I started from where I was with my practice, and I was open. Open to change, open to the unknown. I began from there and kept going. Beyond competitive impulses, I had no destination in mind. I had no idea where my practice would take me. I had no idea yoga would change the game entirely.
With practice, my attitude started to change, a sort of respect developed. Along with patience, clarity, and compassion. My hardened shell began to soften. Gradually I began to comprehend my life more correctly—with less distortion—and started to sense the existence of something that is higher than we are. A greater organizing power.
I would never have been able to accept this at the beginning of my practice, but the tides changed gradually. One step lead to the next, which is the only way it ever happens. Recovery from Bulimia was a natural blossoming of my yoga journey.
What started as a 2 hour time slot for exercise, grew to encompass all aspects of my life: my relationships, my behaviour, my health, and my thoughts. I still desire a career that I think is important, but what I value and believe is important has entirely changed.
"If you tell a person who cannot find their own house, that there is a pot of gold inside, they would be happier had they not had this information. What use is the gold if it cannot be found? It only causes pain. First they must find the house and enter it. Then, there are many possibilities."
Now I find myself committed to this path, not just because my ego likes to show off in pictures, but because I have tasted the freedom and clarity that come with greater understanding, and I am hungry for more.
Nowadays, my hesitations with teaching are different. Who am I to be teaching Yoga- Union with God? I am just me.
But I am reassured knowing that we are all students, we are here to help, and perfection is impossible and therefore irrelevant.
If by teaching I help one person take a step in the right direction, it is worth opening my mouth to share.
The intention with which you do things matters.
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