Scripture “Be still, and know that I am God!” Psalm 46:10NRSV
“Yoga will make you sensitive to the stillness, the presence, the hush, the peace of God. This deep inner stillness is at the core of your being. It is the ground, the joy of your being. The radiant peace you’ll experience is what happens naturally when the creative energy of the Universe is allowed to flow through you unobstructed.” Erich Schiffman
There is a collective breath that infuses the world the week after Christmas—a breath of hushed stillness, a breath that calls on us to pause, to hush and reflect upon that which we have just celebrated, the mystery and miracle of the sacred-human experience. Depending on where you live, the breath of stillness may be ushered in by the silence of a long-awaited snowfall, by a gentle rainfall, or by a steaming cup of cocoa. In the quiet space of remembering the joy of Christmas and looking toward to the reordering of our lives in the coming New Year, God invites us to pause and be still, to breathe in God’s energy that waits to flow through us.
People of faith and yoga attest that to BE still is one of the hardest contemplative practices. We are trained from early childhood to push forward, to achieve, to DO. Practicing the passive stance of stillness in both magical and ordinary moments is the difference between doing yoga and living yoga, between naming our faith and living our faith. The way of God begins when we deliberately hush, find stillness in mind and body, and open ourselves to experience God’s Presence.
Inhale I am
Focus Pose: Choose a restorative pose in which to practice stillness. Child’s pose, balasana, is one of our favorites. Enter the pose with breath, making minor adjustments to get comfortable—and then notice. Bring your awareness first to your body: What areas are having trouble settling? Then focus your awareness on your breath: What is the quality of my breath? Finally, bring your awareness to your mind: What thoughts are pulling my attention from the pose? Name your trouble spots and then gently release them; allow yourself to be absorbed in stillness.