Writings

The Desert Walker


To walk in the desert...
Igor sometimes likens the yogic path as walking in the desert. I like that metaphor, I think that the longer we stay steadfast in our intention to live without blindfolds the closer we get to that desert. In the beginning, when we just stretch, bend and breathe, before we fully grasp the extent of what our undertaking, we keep ourselves in the outskirts of the sandbanks and hold on to certain elements of security. Community, shared perception, ties, routines, memberships, savings... a general sense of belonging that provides a soft cushioning as we start getting closer to our ourselves and our issues. At a certain point, we need to break free from those as well, not necessarily erasing all that we've built, but making our life choices more authentically' us-like', regardless of fear, public opinion and what is expected of us. Once we start considering life from that more 360 view there are no more nets to hold us in the illusion of safety and then, all of a sudden, we find ourselves with nothing to grasp to as far as we can see, only the very instable, unpredictable ground beneath our feet serving as a form of reference. A ground that starts burning should we become paralyzed by the open space around us.

This middle age of yoga that I find myself in, has propelled me in to that desert. I look around me and find that the older I get, the more odd my life in comparison with others becomes. The choices that I shared with many in my youth, now seem more singular and unusual and although that most of the time feels like the only thing I could possibly do, it also feels frightening and sometimes even a bit insane. But I am trusting that insane besides officially meaning crazy also reads as in-sane, as sane from within, which in this old world of neurotic behaviour, obviously makes you differ from the norm...

The desert makes us in-sane, it pulls us apart from the general public and needs us to look within for directions and answers for courage, resilience and stride. The uncertainty of open space breaks our hearts, and softens it's edges until we like the ground beneath us learn how to accomodate the weight placed upon it by strengthening and yielding simultaneously. It's the walk of the yogi, it's mine and if you see what I see, it's also yours, and although we can't see eachtother from where we are, it's good to know that you are out there, my desert walker reader.

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