In our ever-quickening world of instant, continuous, and unending opportunities for distraction, the ability to focus our minds remains vitally important for our well-being.
The ability to draw our attention temporarily away from the busyness of our lives and direct our mental energies into our own selves is a key instigator for the transformative power of yoga.
Here's an excerpt from Chapter 8 of "Evolving Your Yoga: Ten Principles for Enlightened Practice:"
"One of the great benefits of retreats, and the reason why they are such an important part of the yogic tradition, is that in a retreat setting there are limited opportunities for distraction.
In the many spiritual retreats I’ve participated in over the years, I’ve gotten to know the way my mind responds to extended, focused periods of practice. It starts out during the first day or two with its usual preoccupations and wanderings.
Here, it’s easy to become aware of the usual speed and inclinations of my mind. And with this awareness comes a gradual shift. My mind begins to slow down; it gets easier to pay attention to whatever I’m doing. My awareness becomes heightened and more sensitized. I become available to experience the fullness of each moment.
There’s always a moment on retreat where I recognize that my mind has gone from being like a butterfly flitting about from flower to flower, to being more like an eagle perched on a branch, steadfast, silent, and completely focused. When it finally relinquishes its attachment to its usual preoccupations, an expansive inner horizon opens up. I’m free, untethered from the pull of my thoughts.
As my mind becomes quiet, I experience a tremendous sense of peace, freedom, and vast possibility, like the fullness of the sky inside myself. This is the gift of one-pointed focus. It feels at once like an extravagant and luxurious gift, and at the same time like the most basic and essential nourishment for my soul."
🕯How do you experience the power of one-pointedness in yoga and in life?
🕯How does your asana practice help you to develop one-pointed focus?
Our free, online bonus content is designed to complement and enrich your experience of Evolving Your Yoga. Resources like video pose tutorials, downloadable journaling prompts, breathwork, guided visualizations, and more will support your exploration of each of the Ten Principles for Enlightened Practice.