“As human beings, we are a complex of interrelated systems (including the various components of our anatomy, physiology, and psychology) existing within a larger complex of interrelated systems, including our interpersonal relationships and our environment. There is a reciprocal relations between these various structural components and the metabolic functioning of the body as a whole. The body possesses an intrinsic, organic wholeness, and the key to health lies in the balanced interaction of all these systems.” ~ Gary Kraftsow, Yoga for Wellness
Wellness is a harmony. Wellness is a harmony within ourselves, with others, and with our environment. It is not a particular body type or ability. It is not being able to stick to a prescribed (or made-up) diet. Wellness is all things shifting and transitioning through the score of our life.
We each have a body and we each have many bodies all at the same time.
Consider the perspective from the roots of yoga that we each have five bodies, all at once, all in one, all at the same time.
We are flesh, blood, bones, skin, organs, guts, and connective tissue.
We are energy, our vitality ebbing and flowing with breath.
We are thinking, puzzling, wondering, anticipating, narrating, and interpreting.
We are intuition, wise and emotional.
We are who we truly are, unfettered and in bliss.
In yoga philosophy, these bodies are called koshas. Some yoga traditions teach that each body is a layer to be peeled back until the very heart of the matter is uncovered. Another consideration is that we are all of these bodies at all times, connected and experiencing this human form and its bodies like a spiral or spiderweb.
You have felt this - you are feeling this now. When something happens in your physical body, it shows up in your thoughts and emotions, just as a drop of water in the center of the spiderweb will shake all the way to the perimeter. When something impacts you emotionally, you can feel it in your physical body.
You know how joy and sorrow resonate through your being, sometimes simultaneously. You know how joy and sorrow resonate through your community, sometimes simultaneously.
Yoga is a way of life - yoga can help form a vision and path to wellness.Yoga is a practice of engaging with and honoring our senses, thoughts, and emotions. When we check in and begin the process of harmonization, we can build a web of wellness. Perhaps adding strength training, nutritional counseling, physical therapy, psychological counseling, or just getting outside more often will help you on your wellness journey.
Yoga is a way of life - yoga can help us see our place in the world and a way to be part of the solution rather than the pollution.When we actively engage with ourselves, we are able to actively engage with others and the world around us. We can see and honor the impact our life has on the world around us. Perhaps the shift, as we harmonize with our environment, shows up as more kindness, more apologies, saying no to make room for yes, buying less plastics, becoming civically engaged with elected officials, and driving less.
We are complex beings engaging with other complex beings all living together in a complex ecosystem. We are a web within many webs, a spiral within a spiral.
Be kind to yourself. Listen. Show up. Harmonize, shift through the key changes, stumble and get back in tune each time.
Wellness is a path. Keep going.