Logical vs. Experiential: Self-observations

I kept a journal and a blog throughout this process and doing so helped me look at where my fears manifested the most (Will I like who I am when I begin comparing that person to what Ahimsa means via the Sutras) and how to begin working without having to assuage the “logical self” first (Simply let go). In addition to my journal/blog, I also kept a day planner where I jotted down when negative thoughts arose, what events preceded them and what emotions they brought with them. This bore fruit but I let it go after a while because it felt like it played into my need to collect data in order to move forward. A week of noting my negative thought cycle did provide me with insight into where I channel negative emotions and made my waking self more aware of how to way lay this function…but again…it was a really head based process, not heart based.

I feel as if I made the most forward movement (okay…okay I experienced the most at the heart level instead of the head space) with my meditation practice, engaging the 4 purifications paired with asana practice as something to open rather than as a physical practice in itself. Richard Freeman in The Mirror of Yoga (2010) notes, “ The nature of all practice-asana, pranayama, meditation, or the study of philosophy-is that of framing and reframing” (p.29). I found via my meditation, pranayama and asana practice I was able (am able) to reframe how I experience the meaning of Ahimsa. Rather than allowing it to settle in my logical mind, I stopped trying to explore what the concept meant and began to work with how it felt in my body or as point of singular focus during meditation practice. Ahimsa became a felt experience instead of a term that required definition. The more I practice with a boundless concept of love/non-harm as the intention for my action, the more I find peace and a growing ability to move “into” the experience of it. In essence I stopped taking it so seriously per my friends instruction.