Tuesday, March 15, 2011

what beauty lies 11 pages away from where you might give up?

posted by Melissa

Do you ever start books and have a hard time getting through, oh, I don't know...the first 150 pages?  Sometimes, a lot of times, that happens for me.  Even with books that I eventually end up liking, if I ever do get past those first pages.  I started the book, All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy (Don't read the "plot summary" part of the link if you haven't read the book, it gives away the story line.)  about 5 months ago.  Just a week ago or so I made it past page 150, and it finally got gripping.  So much so that last night I was actually angry at Tallulah for not wanting the light on because I wanted to keep reading the book in bed.

I find this whole tai chi adventure to be similar.  Here we are half way through the month and I am still confused, my attention drifting easily to everything else in my life, and wondering why I am doing this in the first place.  But like the McCarthy book, I have something invested in finishing this out.  With the book it was my love for his other book, The Road, that kept me going.

tough choices 
With tai chi, it is the blog, and my love for finding my way through whatever challenge it brings that keeps me going.  If I had first read the horse book without having read the post-apocalyptic tale beforehand, my guess is that I would have given up on reading about horses.  And if I did have a commitment to this blog, and what I have seen transform in myself through the pursuit of the blog, I would probably have quit you too, tai chi.

And so this morning, instead of finishing my horse book, I will pick up this lovely little gem of a tai chi book and see where it takes me.  Who knows, I might find a passage as moving as the one I will leave you with today.  I found it on page 161 in the horse book...11 little pages past my usual quitting point.  I guess you never know what beauty lies a few page turns away.

"THAT NIGHT he dreamt of horses in a field on a high plain where the spring rains had brought up the grass and the wildflowers out of the ground and the flowers all ran blue and yellow as far as the eye could see and in the dream he was among the horses running and in the dream he himself could run with the horses and they coursed the young mares and fillies over the plain where their rich bay and their rich chestnut colors shone in the sun and the young colts ran with their dams and trampled down all the flowers in a haze of pollen that hung in the sun like powdered gold and they ran he and the horses out along the high mesas where the ground resounded under their running hooves and they flowed and changed and ran and their manes and tails blew off of them like spume and there was nothing else at all in that high world and they moved all of them in a resonance that was like music among them and they were none of them afraid horse nor colt not mare and they ran in that resonance which is the world itself and which cannot be spoken but only praised."  -Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses 

Ok, so I know I said I was leaving you with that quote, but as I wrote the title to the post it got me to thinking.  What else do I give up on?  Why?  Isn't it sometimes good to know when to say something isn't working any more?  How do you know when that time is right?  or wrong?

I, of course, started thinking about yoga.  In class yesterday my teacher, Laura, said something that totally brought me to a new place of my practice.  And one that coincidentally is totally aligned with my writing this morning.  She said something to this effect, "In Bikram yoga it is believed that you get the physical in shape and the spiritual will follow.   Physical, mental and then spiritual."  She had also shared another little nugget of wisdom earlier in the same class about moments of self love and how we come to this class for ourselves.  This is MY practice, wow.  For me.

And it hit me, in every class lately I have so many moments of wanting to quit.  "I'll only do one of those postures."  Even when I can physically, I fall out mentally.  I was showing up for the challenge of the 30 days, for the teachers, for the Sweatbox...but not for me.  This is my life, this is my practice, my body.  It is so motivating to be reminded of what I fell in love with about Bikram yoga.

What beauty lies within me...maybe just one pose away?  I think I am willing to find out.

And now I really will leave you...with one of my favorite Bikram quotes:
"Never too late, never too old, never too bad, and never too sick to do this yoga and start from scratch once again." -Bikram Choudury


Anonymous said...

Is this a similar quote...found it just today as well.

In a disordered mind, as in a disordered body, soundness of health is impossible. Cicero

Thoughts I'd share it.


Melissa said...

It does echo the same thing, Mom. Let's get those bodies in shape! Lord knows my mind can use it!