Initially, I was meditating to deal with stress and anxiety, and doing yoga to work on the flexibility and core strength of my body. At first, they didn’t seem to be connected. Five years later, along with writing, yoga and meditation (along with dogs) have become my primary spiritual practices.
I think of myself as an intermediate beginner yogini. I don’t adhere to any specific school, even though most of my teachers were trained in the Shambhava School of Yoga. I have a daily practice, working primarily with a core group of four teachers and on my own. My practice includes asana, but also yogic breathing, chanting, meditation, mindful eating, study, and service. Yoga has transformed my body, but also my heart and mind.
I haven’t taken vows, wouldn’t call myself a Buddhist, even though I study and practice meditation and mindfulness, along with other Buddhist principles and practices. I started my study with the Fort Collins Shambhala Meditation Center, although my true sangha extends far beyond that center–specifically, my work with the Open Heart Project and Susan Piver.
In connection with yoga, meditation is allowing me to finally arrive at the place I was already, to realize that where I was trying so hard to get is HERE.