Weeds & Seeds

Apr 03, 2024


It’s an exercise I sometimes lead at the beginning of workshops.

Participants reflect on how they want to be together, we then name the qualities and behaviors we wish to cultivate (seeds) and those that we want to uproot (weeds.)

Seeds usually include qualities like kindness, non-judgement, and attentive listening, while weeds are often behaviors like being late, giving unsolicited advice, and interrupting.

This exercise isn't just beneficial for group dynamics; it also serves as a valuable tool for personal growth.

An iconic teaching of the Bhagavad Gita tells us,

The body is called the field, Arjuna; the one who watches whatever happens in it – wise men call him the Knower.

- 13.1 (trans. Stephen Mitchell)

Like seeds sown in the ground eventually germinate, our habits – both mental and physical – come to shape our character and guide our actions, whether consciously or unconsciously.

As a wise teacher once said, “If you plant lemons, you won't reap mangoes.”

An introspective yoga practice hones your awareness so that you become more conscious of the seeds you’re planting. Strengthening your self-reflective capacity gives you greater agency to choose the qualities you wish to cultivate.

It’s an empowering way to view your yoga – as a practice that helps you become more of the kind of person you want to be.

As you compassionately uproot limiting ways of being, and nurture those that reflect your deepest values, you come to realize that the beneficial fruits of your practice aren’t just good for you, they also change the way you show up in the world. 

Read more from the Beyond Asana blog