Home of the HeartAug 02, 2023
We are like migrating birds,
The sadness of our departure
Is mitigated by
The joy of our reunion
- Author Unknown
I remember the first time my yoga practice felt like a homecoming. It was 1995 and I was teaching English at a university in Nanjing, China. Living abroad was an unforgettable experience, and, like any great adventure, it also had its challenges.
It was during one of those tougher times when it first dawned on me that yoga would always be there to welcome me just as I was. I recall one day, when I was feeling especially lonely and frustrated, rolling out my mat felt like preparing to enter a warm and familiar home where I could take refuge and find comfort simply in being with myself.
In the many years since, yoga has been my home base and a steadfast companion through life’s ups and downs. Perhaps you’ve also experienced your practice as a faithful ally and a soft place to land no matter what life throws at you.
Aside from being a steady presence in our lives, there’s another way yoga can be a homecoming. It guides us inward, shifting our focus from the external world to our body, breath, and awareness itself.
Isn’t it true that daily life has a way of scattering our energy and attention outward, leaving us feeling disconnected from ourselves?
Yoga brings us back. By focusing the mind inside, yoga invites us to take rest in the sanctuary of our own inner being.
Hrdaya, the Sanskrit word for heart, can be translated as a resting place. It’s the place within you - an experience really - where the layers of distraction and disconnection fall away. You return to your most essential sense of Self where your whole being finds true rest and replenishment.
In giving your mind a place to settle, your practices forge a pathway back home to the abiding peace and joyful awareness that reside at the ground of your being.