In Ayurveda, there are two guiding concepts: “like attracts like” and “opposites balance.” I recently taught an aromatherapy and yoga class that was based in these concepts. The class was designed around the Ayurveda doshas, with custom essential oil blends to balance each dosha type. During the yoga practice, I explained when each dosha should use their scent: vatas during the still parts of class (as air-element vatas crave movement); pittas during the slower, flowing parts of class (as fire-element pittas crave the challenge of intense movement); and kaphas during the challenging parts of class (as earth-element kaphas crave stillness). I also gave mantras and breath technique for each dosha type that would balance their “like attracts like” tendencies.
After class, a few students spoke to me about what they learned about themselves through that practice. One student said that she found the breath technique for her dosha frustrating at first, because it wasn’t the style she wanted to do. As a pitta, she wanted the heat of an ujjayi breath (“like attracts like” again), but I had suggested a cooling mouth exhale for pittas instead (“opposites balance”). “But,” she said, “I realized after a few breaths that what I wanted and what I needed were not the same thing. It blew my mind.” Indeed, what we want is not necessarily what we need.
That’s why we should invest space in our lives to learn to listen to our bodies and how to give them what they need more than what they crave. Balance, after all, means "a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions," or, perhaps just as aptly, keeping something steady so it does not break. Let's listen to what steadies us.
If you’d like a custom Ayurveda yoga essential oil blend, I'm now offering them!
Upcoming Classes and Events
Sunday, August 29 @ 2:00pm at Nebo Nutrition: Yoga and Shakes! Forca is pairing with Nebo Nutrition for a yoga class in their new building in Dardanelle. Come on out!
Saturday, September 4 @ 9:00am at Forca: Intro to the Chakras Yoga Class. Learn about the modern Western chakra system, the traditional Indian chakra system(s), and what they can help us understand about ourselves.
Wednesday, September 22 @ 6:30pm on Mt. Nebo: Fall Equinox Yoga on Mt. Nebo at Sunset Point.
Upcoming Music Monday Classes at Forca:
8/16 Bob Marley
8/30 Taylor Swift
9/13 Bruce Springsteen
Mondays @ 6:30pm (CDT): Music-Based Yoga at Forca or via a video link after class
Wednesdays @ 6:30pm (CDT): Power Yoga at Forca or via a video link after class
Thursdays @ 6:30pm (CDT): Inside Flow Yoga at Forca or via a video link after class
Fridays @ 2:00pm (CDT): Meditation online
Saturdays @ 9:00am (CDT): Power Yoga at Forca or via a video link after class