Yoga Is The Best Fucking Thing In The World And This Is Why I Hate It

sabahyildirim

I’m staring at a wall about two feet in front of me and all I can see is white. I’m balanced on the outside of my right foot and my right hand. My left hand is held high in the air.

I am completely miserable.

I am also dripping with sweat and shaking.

Somehow, the white wall becomes blurry, a blizzard in my mind, and then I hear a voice, “There is only pain and strength. Choose one.”

It’s a big exhausted blur for a second and then that pose ends and we’re on to the next one.

And the next one.

And then rest.

And then bliss.

The practice finishes and I’m laying in a heap, exhausted and exhilarated, another hour spent pushing my potential just past my boundaries, when it hits me: Yoga is the best fucking thing in the world.

Now, don’t get me wrong here. This isn’t another article talking about exhilarated chakras or the incredible healing power of asanas or why yoga deserves a national holiday.

I hate yoga.

I really do.

Namaste.

I’ve hated yoga for years even though I’m dating a yoga teacher, have gone on yoga retreats, and have done yoga on four continents.

Yoga fucking sucks and I hate it.

It’s also one of the best things in my life.

And that’s the whole point.

So often, I find it easy to do the easy things, and hard to do the hard things. The hard stuff is too difficult, or I’m too tired or too lazy, or I procrastinate to avoid pain and discomfort, and shit doesn’t get done.

But yoga forces me to confront discomfort.

Yoga forces me to embrace the pain, hold it close, own it.

Yoga beats me gently into surrender.

Yoga makes me feel things.

When we hold a pose for so long it hurts, or have a bad day or a fight with a loved one, we suffer. Part of our struggle comes from the mistaken belief that pain is permanent, that it will go on forever. But when we let go of the idea of permanence, when we release and embrace the temporary nature of all things, pain included, we become free.

Yoga teaches me deep shit like that.

Yoga is a gentle reminder that when we push away pain, we push away progress.

Yoga is the soft voice that whispers, “The root of all suffering is the false idea of permanence.”

Isn’t that beautiful?

Do you seen how that’s empowering?

But, look, it’s all context. It’s all perspective. And we create both. So often, we believe our feelings will never cease. Hardships will last forever. Our circumstances won’t change. Pain and bad luck is permanent.

But it’s not.

Everything ends.

And this is where yoga comes in, not by rewarding failure, but actively encouraging it.

I was in a class last week and the instructor told us, “I want you to try new things and to not succeed. I want you to fall over or step off of your mat. I want you to feel little trembles in your arms telling you to quit. Because that’s what growth feels like. That’s your body becoming stronger…” And something suddenly interrupted her, a crash from the back of the room as a water bottle falls over, but she continued on, “Good. Excellent. We have listeners back there. We have people trying new things…”

Yoga recognizes that failure does not exist. Rather, growth exists. Persistence and patience, these things are real. Challenge is seen as an invitation to expand, a daily practice proving that overcoming is possible. So is progress. And the more we practice, the better we get.

So, yeah.

I hate yoga.

But I love that shit. TC mark

Jeremy Goldberg

Jeremy Goldberg is trying to make kindness cool, and the world better than it was yesterday. Follow him on Instagram for daily inspiration!

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