The more I practice yoga, the more and more I am convinced that the goal of practice, so to speak, is more than just a unity of consciousness, more than just a sense of connection to the greater whole.
It is also a practice that creates a sense of inner unity, so that we feel less split up, divided, compartmentalized and masked. As we move along the path of yoga, it asks us to time and time again throw out our ideas about ourselves and who we think we are. It asks us to bring all parts of who we are to the practice so that we might emerge more connected and integrated.
A few years ago, I discovered a the teachings of Dharma teacher Adyashanti. He speaks a lot about this idea of the awakened state being a state the undivided self.
“The moment of awakening shows us what is ultimately true and real as well as revealing a deeper possibility in the way that life can be lived from an undivided and unconditioned state of being….
This inner revolution is the awakening of an intelligence not born of the mind but of an inner silence of mind, which alone has the ability to uproot all of the old structures of one’s consciousness. Unless these structures are uprooted, there will be no creative thought, action, or response. Unless there is an inner revolution, nothing new and fresh can flower.”
Through practice we can be become more undivided; more unified as a whole, and less mentally split off into the future, the past, our opinions, and our stories. Every time we bring our selves back to the present moment, every time we bring ourselves back to the breath, to the inhale and the exhale, we create more and more of the connections within that result in unity: unity of heart and mind.
Next time you are on the mat, as you set your intention for your practice, try holding space for this sense of being undivided. Invite all parts of yourself into the practice: the shadow and the light, the fun and the cranky. Honor all parts of who you are, and all it took to get yourself onto the mat and into your heart.
Then together, may we bow in deeply to our practices, to the unity of consciousness and the unity of heart and mind. OM, Svaha.