Galaxies are created when a star gets so hot, so full of pressure and pressed into itself that is has no choice but to explode into a supernova (resulting in a brand new galaxy).

We are the same.  But it’s not always easy to keep this cosmic grasp.

Painful, gross, uncomfortable, traumatic feelings cause us to want to run to the hills because they scare us.  We don’t understand that they are only visitors, and that our heart and soul have a very big say in how long they’re welcome to stay for.

I build my teaching and personal yoga practice on fearlessly and almost joyfully submerging into shadow emotions, befriending them and hearing them so that my students (and I!) may learn from them, expel them and move forward.

The other day I had a student break down, freak out cry.  My response? Good! Good! GOOD! Let it come, don’t run, don’t fear—let it escape.

The beauty of letting an intense wave of emotion leave the body is that once its out, its out. We are energy—the emotion is energy and it simply needs somewhere to go. Of course, we don’t send it to another person—we take a moment  (however long that lasts) to be alone, and we allow it to be expelled.

You are deeply powerful and you do not have to fear the depths of your emotion.

The more you run the longer it lasts—sometimes, if we are fearful enough, this inability to press through the molasses of deeply painful emotion haunts hearts’ entire lifetimes.

It might take a year or more to clear the residuals of an entire life time (that is, up until you have chosen to fall into practice) of wounding, but it still will bring you greater relief and joy than trying to ignore it or wish it away ever could. It shows you your power, your capability, your ability to love and heal yourself–what gifts.

We so often hear of this voice, this voice it knows—but how on earth do we reach it?

By going into the darkness, and allowing all of the rubbish to be cleared away. By going into the darkness so that finally you’ll listen, finally ready for answers and unafraid you submerge and then come back up, back out, able to breathe again.

When we sink into the depths of our fear, our anger, worry or deep sadness it is then we realize how truly capable and powerful we are.  We are able to handle it, when we listen fearlessly and with the knowingness that the tears, the frustration, the screams of agony are released, are expulsions, exorcisms.  That the further we dive the faster we are able to come back up and give ourselves the oxygen, patience, kindness and soul-honor  it takes to sink into the darkness of the ocean. We don’t force, we catch our breath, we listen and observe, we come up for air to refill the tank when we need too—and next time, we fall deeper into the soul, deeper into the sea.

Stepping onto a yoga mat is about energy—where it flows, where we direct it, what it manifests and most importantly how we release the kind that does not serve us.  In patience, presence and fearlessness come growth, empowerment and joy.

Do not be afraid, do not attach and know it is not you—it is an experience.  When we go to a concert we do not become a concert, when we have a nervous breakdown we do not become a nervous breakdown, when we take a chair pose we do not become a chair pose.

This is why asana (physical) practice is so vital! How quickly can you let go, how quickly can you put forth effort, and how calm can you stay when you are in extreme discomfort. Do you hold onto chair pose when you’re in a forward fold, or do you allow yourself to be in the peaceful throws of bending over.  While you’re relaxing in a child’s pose do you consider what’s coming next? That warrior 1 you hate so much. Instead of being where you are, when you are and dealing with what you have to when you have to.  This is emotional submersion—going into the depths when they call, and knowing when to come back up for air.

To get on the boat. To take a moment.

And then to dive again.

You got this.

Happy Heart Yoga Retreat: Let Go & Live Lush in Lake George this May with Diana! Spiritual & transformative yoga,  jumping into sweet Lake George from a private dock, a full-moon releasing ceremony, gourmet vegetarian food cooked by a private chef and so much more. Friday, May 1st-Sunday, May 3rd. For details click here.

Semi Private Group classes at the Shala: Join Diana in her magical and cozy space for joyful and deeply spiritual yoga practice. Saturdays, 5-6:15 pm in Gramercy, NYC. Sign Up here. All levels welcome. $30.00

 

Happy Heart Shala Updates: If you're interested in joining the Lush Life mailing list for class, workshop and retreat announcements click here

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