At a Kundalini Yoga Class
Yesterday I had an amazing experience in my yoga class at RYK Yoga and Meditation Center.
Most of the exercises in Kundalini yoga are performed with eyes closed “so that we could focus on ourselves,” as the teachers explain to us.
After the initial tuning-in and setting our intentions, we closed our eyes and began the practice. And I suddenly forgot who I was.
I didn’t have an amnesia moment, it wasn’t any kind of a medical condition, but suddenly all the details of my life behind the classroom doors were not active in my mind any longer – who I am in the world, what I do, where I live… – all those facts suddenly left my awareness and the only thing left was just the aliveness in my body, the knowing that “I am.”
It wasn’t scary, but it was new, so my mind, which of course doesn’t like any surprises and prefers the safety and stability of the known, got alarmed and told me to go back to thinking about my life and thus ground myself “in the solid reality.”
I tried that; it wasn’t hard to do, but the very nice feeling – light, full of life and vibrancy, joyous – began to noticeably subside. I didn’t want to lose it, so I focused on that feeling instead, and the more I did, the stronger it grew.
If someone asked me then what my name, age, occupation, marital status, address and phone numbers were, I would say, “I have absolutely NO IDEA!” and it wouldn’t be a lie. There was no habitual mind chatter about all things past and future, I simply was, and it felt AMAZING!
When the instructor told us that we were about to begin our last exercise before relaxing, I couldn’t believe that a whole hour and a half had passed. The usual sense of time had been deactivated in me and the whole class felt like just several minutes.
After the session was over and the lights went on again, I had to look at my own body to remind myself who I currently was, but the thought that I could have entered the studio as a language professor and left it as a computer programmer or a spiritual teacher made me smile. Anything seemed possible. I wasn’t as anchored in my usual reality, so stepping into some other reality didn’t feel that unrealistic.
I have been practicing Kundalini yoga for two years now, on and off. In January, I start my six-month Kundalini yoga teacher training, and I can’t wait to see what that brings into my life!