I had a great yoga class today at Yoga on the Park. Joanne Gormley really worked us. At the end of it I felt literally happy, smiley, relaxed. Exhausted - but lots of Sukah!
Over the last few weeks I have been contemplating the Om (pronounced Aum). Om is the universal sound. In some religions or cultures, it signifies the beginning and ending of a prayer or prayer ritual.
I have had a strange experience with Om. When in the Tuesday class - which is really full (up to and maybe over 20 people) ... the Oms are robust and full. The unity of our voices pulls a bigger Om out of all of us, well, out of me. No one hesitates too much. Sometimes we cycle through a number of Om's and that is also beautiful.
Thursdays class by contrast is much smaller. We are not even ten most the time. At the beginning my Oms were definitely hesitant, quieter, shorter, my "mmm" shaking and timid. I wondered over this last while whether we (I!!) hide behind other's Oms sometimes. We wait for the teacher to begin the round of three Oms. I don't necessarily own my Om.
Today wasn't like that though. Today I created the space I needed to put my voice out there. Joanne G taught last week that the Om resonates within us, releases chemicals (neurotransmitters I imagine) in the brain that are good for us, massages the sinuses and the brain. Spiritually I think that Om probably does some of that to our souls, to our psyche.
Its a lot of work letting go of the ego, the self conscious part of ourselves that judges ... that judges whether an Om is too loud, too long, just right, blah blah blah... Its more work to hang on to that.
So here is to my Om...
Namaste to you.
And thank you Joannes.
For those of you struggling with anxiety, depression, looking for focus, I can promise you that if you commit to a practice of yoga - its life changing. Much like the practice of gratitude. Put this in your took kit of self care.