Some of you may know that I have taken up yoga with a vengeance. I did this very reluctantly, as I am not inclined towards the spiritual realms (just listen to my records and you’ll get the picture). But I was in terrible shape, and yoga turned around my whole situation.
Now that I’m more deeply immersed in the yoga culture, my suspicions mentioned above are being confirmed. So many of these people are looking to be fixed by someone else, rather than be an active participant in improving their health and their lives. This is a key notion in so many of our endeavors: do we want someone to wave the magic wand and take away our troubles? Or are we willing to work for it?
Further, almost all forms of yoga seem to be subject to the vagaries of 21st century advertising hype, notably the eroticization of images in yoga. Take a look at some yoga photographs sometime. So much of it is practically soft porn. We see girls with their skimpy bikini’s doing yoga on the sand, while the surf rolls in, with the sea and sky beyond under a setting sun. Often we see poses that involve two people, and often this is highly reminiscent of the girl-on-girl action in soft porn, their bodies beaded and glistening, limbs entwined.
But perhaps most annoyingly of all are the yogis who simply ape the words of their “guru”. Truth is not merely universal, but also local and historical (hold that paradox, because it’s just the way things are), and NO ONE has the last word on ANYTHING, including, of course, me.
In any case, I encourage anyone who wants to work their bodies in ways that are almost magical at times, to go ahead and try yoga. But bear these pitfalls in mind. I’m sure I’ll get a lot of negative feedback on this. But hey, when did I ever shrink from controversy? xo Bard