I take my yoga without politics please.

I drink my coffee black.  I chose a politics free life and I am committed to doing good things and living well.

In my pursuit of living well, I practice yoga, among other things. Yoga grounds and inspires me at the same time. It lifts my spirits and reminds me that miracles are always occurring. It tells me that I am always changing and never standing still, so there is always room for something more, or less if I chose it.

My yoga is about living in possibility.  It challenges me both physically and mentally, and it keeps my ego in check.  Yoga teaches me about the power of the mind and living with intention.  The more I practice, the more I carry these discoveries off the mat and into my life, so I can take more chances, be more compassionate, and maybe inspire someone along the way.

I recently had a conversation with a fellow yogi and soul mate about the other side of yoga. I am talking about the politics of yoga.  Again, I choose not to participate.  I am not apathetic at all. I just think the agendas get in the way of the what we need.

In yoga especially, politics muddies the waters and poisons the experience.  It attempts to explain and therefore confine it.  From politics comes policy, and that terrifies me.

I think there is too much talk about what it is, so that when people come to practice, they have an expectation and a time frame.  There are too many platitudes and self-affirming cliches floating around in the social media, and I wonder, do we really need to be told 10 times a day that we are good enough? Maybe.  But I get tired of the words when the practice of being good to each other is not there.

My physical practice of moving my body in strange directions is more than 30 years old because it makes sense for me to move this way.  I would not say I am "enlightened", whatever that means.  I would say I am flexible in my body so it has always felt good to fold and bend, both physically and mentally.  I absolutely love inversions because the rush is amazing on the inside of my body and I deplore planks because they are just plain hard.

But that is not the yoga. That is my practice on the way to the yoga.  The yoga to me is the continued pursuit in the calming of the mind, and the ability to find some peace in the noise of the every day lives that we live so that I may live my life with intention and purpose. My yoga has taught me to embrace the pain and the joy knowing that each are part of being alive. In a plank position, I hear all my stories and frustrations and I learn from that moment, so I do planks, even though I really don't like it.

Then there's the "instagramation" of yoga: the posting of postures.  Some say this is pushing us away from the meaning and experience of yoga. I don't think so. I think it's great to see people challenging their bodies and minds.

I have posted a posture or 2 on Instagram, not to impress others, (because I am sure my form is not always correct) but to celebrate the fact that I can do this with my body. I am 51, and I love that I am healthy enough to enjoy a physical practice.  Someday I will not be able to do a headstand, when I am 81, but by then, perhaps my yoga will have taught me to live life to the fullest in those moments and find cool things to discover.