Finding Windhorse

I’ve just begun a great new book, “Ruling Your World: Ancient Strategies for a Modern Life.” I’d like to give you a summary of what it’s about, but it’s one of those so simple it’s complex kind of books. If you want a summary, go read it at Amazon. At the very least you can look through the book and get a better sense of it than I can explain here.

One of the major ideas of the book is called windhorse (go ahead – look it up online. I couldn’t find anything worth linking to that made much sense). In the book, windhorse is defined as, “…the ability to bring about long life, good health, success, and happiness. When we have windhorse, we are able to accomplish what we want without any obstacles.”

Doesn’t that sound nice?

It’s so well said. Wouldn’t it be nice if it was so easy to accomplish?

Do you know what gets in the way of windhorse? Ourselves. Big surprise. The author says that we get in our own way when we focus on ourselves as in, “What about me?” “Will this make me happy?” and “What do I want?” that lessons our ability to connect to windhorse. When we focus on ourself our world becomes much smaller.

You can find things that make you happy. I went shopping yesterday, and that was a lot of fun, but it was also only temporary fun. It wasn’t real happiness. The author also points out that we can engage with things like yoga and meditation in ways that dilute their goodness. Again, we dilute it by turning it back on ourselves as in, “Will going yoga make me happy/better/nicer?” and so on. It’s the focus on me, on the ego that brings us down.

Yet, in yoga – at least in Bikram – we are told to focus on ourselves in the mirror and to tune everyone out. At first this seems like a contradiction to the concept of windhorse, but I’m not sure it is. If I spent my practice thinking things like, “When is the teacher going to compliment my pose?” or “When is the teacher going to give me a correction to make my pose better?” then yes, I am moving away from windhorse. But I can focus on myself in the mirror without thinking about ME. I can, for example, tune in to my body and how it feels (I have a tight right hamstring at the moment) and pay attention to my breath. I can look at my form in the mirror and make corrections to my alignment. It’s when I start thinking, “I have such bad alignment in this posture. When am I going to look as good as the person next to me?” that I start losing windhorse.

At least, that’s my current understanding of it. If you have some understandings I hope you will share them. In the meantime, I’m going to keep reading this book and sharing my thoughts on windhorse and how they connect to yoga and life.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. LeighAHall (@LeighAHall)
    Dec 14, 2014 @ 19:01:56

    Finding Windhorse http://t.co/jmOdrJUcM9 #bikramyoga #yogaholicsmag

    Reply

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