I had the opportunity and privilege to assist my Yoga Guru, D'ana Baptiste, at her bi-annual yoga retreat at Hidden Springs Ranch in Altamont, Utah. A secluded lodge in the midst of natural surroundings.
The theme for this retreat was "Be The Change You Want To See." There are so many things happening in the world today: countries recovering from natural disasters, teen suicide, workers trapped in mines, land invasions, and more. These events can be so overwhelming sometimes when we see them in the news. It's hard to believe that there are solutions to these problems or we can do anything about them to reverse the adverse affects. Maybe the answer is more simple than we think. The change can happen with you today. If we seek change in our family, community, state, nation, planet, or universe, we have to start with ourselves.
I woke up on the first morning at the lodge to a beautiful sunrise. This was a rare witnessing due to my regular busy work schedule. I took the opportunity to sit and watch the sun rise over the hillside accompanied by a few clouds. Basking in the rays and warmth, I thought of how I can be Present and Aware as I assist in this yoga retreat. Here is the simple yoga practice I did that you can do, also, to start your day AND be the change in the universe you want to see.
Sit in a comfortable seated posture on your yoga mat (or on the floor or on the grass outside). Sit in your stillness and become more aware of your breath. Set your intention. HOW do you want to BE in your doings today: Thoughtful? Caring? Loving? Giving?
Inhale to raise your arms overhead. Exhale to bring your arms down by your side. Do this as many times as you'd like. Let this simple movement express how you want to project your personal intention into the world: smoothly, gently, lovingly.
Finish by sitting in your stillness for a few more breaths and then proceed with the rest of your day.