Saturday, December 11, 2010

Opening Up

I started practicing yoga almost two months ago and I am totally hooked. I love the part that I thought I would enjoy - the physical challenge, the alignment and the improved flexibility. But I'm also struck by how much I'm enjoying the emotional (or spiritual?) side of it. I was skeptical about the idea that a bunch of body twists could put me in touch with something, anything more than my muscles and tendons, but it seems that there's something to the supposed mystique of yoga. This morning, at the end of practice, one of the teachers helped me push back my shoulders - opening up my heart. Then, another teacher read a passage from Hand Wash Cold by Karen Maezen Miller. It was a portion I had heard before, and appreciated: about the inevitable suffering that life entails and how we can choose to turn towards the glimmers of beauty available to us in our ordinary lives. This same teacher had read it only two days before, so this was nothing new. But this morning, something about the story and, I think, having physically opened my heart, made the passage far more poignant. I found myself crying. Wow!

I came home and, after a quick breakfast, used the opening I had found to return to my novel-in-progress. This novel and I have had a contentious relationship, and recently, I've been a little mad at her. But I resolved today to overcome that. We sat down together, thought a little bit, imagined a little bit, and then I wrote more in one sitting than I've written in weeks.

So, do you have writer's block? Maybe try yoga! What else works for folks?


Karen Maezen Miller said...

I tell people that my entire first book - Momma Zen - came out of shoulder stand. Thank you.

Dhana said...

I can't imagine my life without yoga or my writing. They are inseperable.

Carrie C said...

Karen, you're welcome, you've definitely made a fan here! And Dhana, I think I'm coming to discover just that.

Rowenna said...

Awesome post! I've found that a good workout of any kind lets me zone and think in different ways than when my body is still--a good 45 minutes on the treadmill and new worlds open up!

Princess Nijma

Princess Nijma