Daily M 86: Nourish Joy

Daily M 86: Nourish Joy


Hi everyone Michele here and welcome to
the DailyM podcast! I write this on Chris Canevaro’s 3 year
anniversary of his passing. It seems impossible that it has been this
long already. Where did he go? The older I get, the more I ponder the death
experience itself as that day looms closer. It’s not a dismal pondering but one of curiosity
and of faith that like all else, it will be perfect and right. When we have that context, we can heighten
the days and moments that we have here. Not so much in doing (as that’s super, too)
but in Being. I’m a Bible reader and interestingly, the
word Joy is written over 70 times in the New Testament alone. I often equate joy with how we are Being as
opposed to what we might be doing. Joy is a seed that sits in the heart and can
be expressed in spirit, whether washing the dishes or on a yacht experiencing the blue
waters around Greece. Ironically too, I wrote this as we hear of
two recent public figures committing suicide. Unbeknownst to friends and family, these two,
in their younger twilight years, were pushed to such a point that no longer living was
their appropriate answer? It’s shocking, and while we don’t like
to “look” at these dark situations, the truth is that it’s not so uncommon and needs
our attention. Why? These two had plenty of both money and fame
and both contributed greatly to mankind. But my suspicion is that despite that, one
major thing was lacking: Joy. Because having Joy in one’s heart surpasses
and transcends all burden and worry. So we clearly see here that money buys you
goods and services but can’t nourish the thirst the heart longs for – Joy, pure Joy. Joy in just Being. Do you guys remember that silly movie with
Eddie Murphy where his name was Kit, which means, “keep it together?” It was hilarious because he was anything but
that. He lived his life chaotically and worried
about anything and everything. He of course always got himself into trouble
as he tried to “keep it together.” That movie is oh so old, so I can’t even
imagine what the movie would look like today in our advancing, fast paced, conflicted world. How do we “keep it together?” For starters, suicide is not the answer. It sounds again silly to say, but according
to the National Suicide Prevention Council, suicide rates are up. It’s an epidemic. I wrote my last blog on depression and how
yoga can help anxieties, but according to recent articles, despite these last two occurring
deaths within days of each other, being depressed doesn’t always equal being suicidal. So what gives? Well, if you can’t uncover the inner Joy
that your birthright bequeaths you, you need to finish reading this and do something now
to address that privilege that is yours. 20 years ago my mom died of Alzheimer’s,
meaning that I lived through 4 years of watching someone so beautiful and saintly deteriorate
in front of me in while still in her early 50’s. My losses didn’t start or stop there, as
many people close to me died at an early age. Additionally, I had stomach problems at a
young age up through my early 30’s. I found myself in and out of clinics and hospitals,
and 20 years ago now visiting with a gastroenterologist at Stanford. I still had a good life as I’m an optimistic
person, but these things sucked the joy from my life, and I was miserable and sad. What came first, the ill health or the ill
spirit? Who knows and who cares. Because what I did was I found yoga, Bikram
yoga. In the next few years you will see BYSJ exploit
more and more of what this yoga is as a healing modality, one unlike any other product out
there. I tell my staff that it isn’t other forms
of yoga or exercise that we are competing against. Our competition is drugs for addictions, prescriptions
for depression, unnecessary surgery, disillusioned body image, blood pressure medications, and
other alternatives used to escape, or to soothe an “ill” feeling for a fleeting moment. “Fleeting” is the key word here, as what
needs to be healed eventually progresses and kills the hope and spirit of joy within each
of us. Bikram yoga with it’s 26 poses and 2 breathing
exercises will do damage to those mega toxins we accumulate from what we consume and what
we breathe. You’ll bend your spine in all ways intended
so your nervous system won’t flake on you, interrupting those feel good chemicals. You’ll process hormones correctly, giving
you freedom from a sluggish metabolism and those unsuspecting doubts that creep up when
your hormones are unbalanced. Those will be a thing of the past. Savasanas in class might be the most unique
thing we do in Bikram yoga. Without these folks, there is no Bikram yoga. It’s 90 minutes because your asana is married
to your savasana, acknowledging that what we sow so shall we reap: do the work, get
the benefit; move the body, still the mind; cause the interruption to heighten the communication. And if you do this everyday, the harmony between
your mind and your body will synthesize, fertilizing enough to grow and flourish that seed of joy. I don’t know anything about suicide. But I know that all yoga is good. From my nearly 20 years of practice and over
15 in owning and teaching at BYSJ, I know that this yoga delivers on what you seek (the
confidence I have now in the speeches I give at work; my lungs can take the higher elevation
when I climb; I’m a better listener to my kids are just a few that I here from you members). But, it also decides to grant you a blessing
you didn’t know was coming – happiness. But the yoga practice needs to be essential
and not just in a casual way, but by practicing a lot, like 5-6 times a week in fact. I’m pretty certain there isn’t much clinical
evidence on how yoga “prevents” suicide or depression. But my experience tells me, as do the thousands
of stories that I’ve heard over the years from members and others just like yourselves,
that this yoga helps you lay down your burdens —if even for just 90 minutes— only to
pick them up again, but this time in a lighter fashion with a different perspective. These burdens are too heavy and too many to
carry. Left alone you’ll bury yourself dead and
you haven’t even died yet. So, if darkness is getting more sophisticated,
then we better turbo charge our bodies and minds so that darkness passes us by. Make yoga a choice, but then make it a requirement
as well, and avoid all those other alternatives that I spoke of earlier that will only make
things worse in the long haul. But there’s something more to add here. Bikram Yoga is the same every day. It’s the yoga intended for 7 billion people
meaning it’s for beginners. No one cares if you’ve ever practiced anything
a day in your life. The teacher provides safe instruction with
a dialog and you take it where you can, sitting if you need. The room is hot so we see you with as little
on as possible so no one knows who you are, what you do, or the house you live in. So, if there was ever a place for you to BE,
it’s here. The nature of this yoga eliminates roles,
titles, status or other. You are just like everybody else in that room
– no preference, no bullying, no entitlement, no help! And the best part is that you are accepted
and even loved in this community. Yep. And there it is – community. Our world as it is now and probably in the
near future, will keep us “alone” with tight schedules (no time to chat), work from
home by ourselves, buying and having items delivered with no personal interaction, so
as human beings we are sacrificing the one thing we do need: each other. A yoga community provides a sense of belonging
that we won’t get on-line, at work, or even in our like-minded circles. This type of community sees you for you and
inherent in that is a feeling that says you are good, you are enough, you are appreciated,
you matter. At BYSJ, I know for myself and all our staff,
we couldn’t do the work we do if we didn’t just love and adore you members. We care about each one of you! You may have read in the newspaper recently
about a gentleman that died from a surfing accident in Santa Cruz. That gentleman was one of our own. Richard Herrin loved this yoga and did it
up to 5 times a week. He changed his life with it so much so that
he and his wife decided to go back to college and get their engineering degrees. He had just graduated from San Jose State
that Thursday! He left his family way too young but I bet
you he left this earth with joy in his heart! we just had international yoga day and
if you don’t don’t know this every second Saturday of the month we have
karma yoga class a free class every 4:30 second Saturday of the month so I’m
begging you to get all your friends and family those people that you know that
have not found yoga to come in and do a class do a free class that’s why we
offer it have them come have them come to maybe
some of the events that we offer and tease them enough for them to get a
little bit of a spark to start a yoga practice all the teachers will be happy
to talk to them especially bring in those that suffer from lack of joy push
them to come because losing hope is the worst. BYSJ is an exemplar community
so if you are lacking and being involved in one such as this here at BYSJ go
find another one or better yet get here and if you can’t stay online with us
connect to us and know that wherever you are hopefully we’ll get to you soon
thanks for listening please share and comment

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