May 6, 2021
The lineage of yoga is a sacred key to our practice. Unfortunately, the way yoga is packaged up and delivered today - especially in the Western hemisphere - can have an impact on our personal and individual connections to the lineage.
My guest today grew up in a Hindu household where yoga was and is an integral part of her faith. Anusha arranges her home in such a way that brings attention to the divine consciousness, and she begins every day with yoga. But she isn’t practicing asanas first thing in the morning. She wakes up early for her morning meditation, then shares her morning prayers with her son. While asana is a part of the yoga practice, it is just one element of the faith and the lineage Anusha discusses today.
Anusha sits at the edge of the decolonization of yoga, a space that is uncomfortable for many of us. Yoga is very sacred to us, and it is normal to react defensively when it comes to our practice. But there are historical inaccuracies that we cannot deny, and it is our responsibility now as yoga students and as yoga teachers to create a sacred space that honors the true lineage of yoga.
Decolonizing is not just a buzzword, as Anusha explains today through her work and experience teaching decolonization to the yoga community. We discuss the historical implications of colonization and how it manifests now in the modern whitewashing of history, media, and the wellness community.
The whitewashing of wellness limits the education modern yogis receive. We miss out on the true essence of what the yoga scriptures are teaching us, and those students who follow after us will continue to be limited by this colonized perspective.
We can use our yoga practice as a tool to dismantle and decolonize our minds, and Anusha shares the ways she and other members of the yoga community can platform minority voices and lift us up and out of the echo chamber.
I am personally very inspired by Anusha’s journey and her sense of responsibility to her faith and her practice. Each of us, as yoga students, has the responsibility to honor the lineage of yoga and maintain our agency as a yogi. By educating ourselves and seeking out diverse voices and perspectives, we can move away from the colonized perspective and break down any of the unconscious barriers in our own minds that could be translating into our practice.
If you have an inspiring story to share, please get in touch. Send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me - what does yoga mean to you? You could be invited to guest spot on The Yoga Inspiration Podcast.
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