My mind is a brat sometimes. My mind tells me that I "should" appear ethereal and blissful and never have negative thoughts about myself or others… After all, I teach yoga. But, because I'm versed in watching my thoughts and identifying my feelings, I know that I experience guilt, desire, jealousy and EGO. Then, my mind shames me for not being a "yogi."
What Yogi Doesn’t Mean
Except, what does "being a yogi" mean anyway? How about not. a. thing.
Yogi, like all of the other things we've called ourselves is a label. And, labels are strong mental constructs (usually judgmental ones!) In reality, labels are mutable constructs that we put our stories and biases in. Labels are not universal! And, when we empower our story without being aware of it, we create false ideals and even false idols. My yogi might be your gymnast or priest! I've seen yogi defined as everything from "one who practices [!yoga!]" to "a person who is a master of yoga". And, I've seen people use "yogi" as a tool to (unsuccessfully) escape their identity rather than empower it. You cannot bypass the you in yogi!
Yogi does not mean that you divorce from yourself for some 'enlightened' new you. Yogi doesn't mean you blindly follow without self-awareness or critical questioning. Remember, our sweet yoga practice is about holistically encountering yourself. Following, YOU (as you) are yogi. Yoga is a way in not out!
Put The YOU In Yogi!
The yoga practices are tools for you to connect with you. The practices are not blind salvation or shut-eyed faith. In truth, nothing is. You are the thing that will "save" you. And, by "save you", I mean you are the agent that will use the tools of yoga (or religion or twinkies for that matter!) to recognize you are already perfect. We are whole because we learn to process our experiences of being alive holistically. We are whole because we stop making ourselves right and wrong. We are whole because we remember that our conscious life (bratty mind and all!) is wholesome. You cannot bypass you to become "yogi". In yoga, you become you.