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Yoga in Etna
I’d like to share one simple way to take care of oneself with you. Being honest and truthful to yourself is a powerful way to take care of yourself.
Ask yourself before you say and do anything.
Is it true?
Is it necessary?
Is it kind?
Is it beneficial?
One of my old friend gave me a card about 13 years ago. On that card, there are only four lines. Those are the four gates to be truthful. I kept this card all those years but it was always in a pocket in my purse and this card didn’t get a chance to see the Sun . Then one day this card became a family treasure, when I shared this card with my husband. My husband saw a great value in this wisdom, he and I practice of being truthful with this card in daily life ever since then. Both of us mostly practice these lines when we speak. But the other day, I thought these lines can be practice not only in my speech but also in my action. I want to be honest and be truthful to myself. So I ask myself:
Is it what I truly want to do? (Do I truly want to eat this cookie?)
Is it necessary for me and others? (Is eating cookie this time of the day necessary?)
Is it kind to me and others ? (Is eating cookie kind to my mind/soul, body and digestion?)
Is it beneficial to me and others ? (Is eating cookie beneficial to my mind/soul, body and digestion?)
Asking these four questions to yourself, then if all answers are “yes” and your heart feels good about the answer, go ahead to enjoy what you say “yes” to do being honest and truthful to yourself.
Practicing being truthful needs a discipline. It easily slip away from your head. But once you know this wisdom and practice a few time, I believe you can feel the benefit of this practice immediately. Being honest to yourself is such a wonderful feeling and it’s liberating.
By the way, being truthful is one of the discipline of Ashtanga yoga; the eight limbs of yoga, called Satya in Sanskrit. But that will be another topic in the future blog…
I think the trend word of 2019 is “self-care”. I saw this word many places and I saw so many peoples needed “self-care” throughout this year.
My husband and I bumped to an old friend in front of a local bank early in this year. Our friend looked healthier and more lively than ever. He used to own only a bicycle (which looked old and tired) for his mean to transport himself but now he drives a beautiful car (it was shiny!). We were curious what was the change.
He shared that after he went through a life threatening experience and his recovery, he had a realization of the power of “self-care”. When he started taking care of himself better, everything around him became in harmony. His health got better and his awareness became keener, his family is happier with him. His choice of owning a car was protecting himself from the elements so that his family doesn’t need to worry about him. He takes care of himself first so he can take care of his family and friends. It’s like the logical idea, an adult should put the oxygen mask on him/herself first then put the mask on his/her child in the emergency situation in the airplane so ultimately there is more chance for both of them to survive.
In this time of wrapping up our year of 2019, take a moment and take a good care of yourself and thank to yourself.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving in this month of gratitude. Put the priority to yourself and enjoy its radiating effects around you.
Please enjoy this Yoga Checklist. This list may help you to become more aware of your surroundings, consider your environment, and indulge introspective thoughts. This time spent will add to your well being, and benefit the well being of your family and friends as well.
Life is a string of moments. We regularly see, feel and notice our body parts, our physiological pattern, emotion, weather, and environmental changes. But our recognition is not so conscious. Pay attention to how you feel and what surrounds you from time to time, as often as you can.
Yoga is not only physical exercise, being flexible and amazingly strong like a physical theatrical artist.
Yoga is about realization of your state; how you are and who you are in the moment.
- bowel movement
- breathing rhythm
- heart beat
- sleep cycle
- reaction to things (what you see, hear, smell, taste and feel)
- moon phase
- color of the sky
Yuko Matsuda: Yoga practitioner, body worker, and translator. Born, raised and lived in a pacific beach town in Japan and moved to a valley at the foot of Marble Mountain Wilderness in California in 2011. E-RYT, RPYT, youth yoga instructor since 2004.