There was an article in both the SF gate and the Huffington Post today about a teacher getting fired from a fitness club from requesting that her students not be engaged on Facebook during class. As the presence of asana continues to expand into gyms, the olympics, and high schools, it makes me wonder, how are the “rules” and perceptions of yoga’s essence changing? Where and how are the lines being drawn? And who is drawing them? I always struggle with the balance between ego and righteousness, integrity and judgment. I’m thinking it may be a lifelong challenge. The teacher was clear with her position. “Really? Your e-mail is more important than understanding your body? It’s more important than taking time for you? It’s more important than everyone else here?”
While my mind went to outrage (and let me say for myself I don’t believe a cell phone has any place on a yoga mat…are you with me there?), I had to step back and check myself . I recalled a handful of instances from just this week (and its only Tuesday) when I interrupted a conversation to take a call, check a quick text, or half swivel my body around so I could roll my eyes over my email mid sentence with someone. Yup, I do that kind of thing too. And when I think of yoga “off the mat”, I’m not talking about volunteering in Africa. I’m thinking about how I show up, and about being respectful and present to all of my teachers, who lucky for me are embodied by every living being on the planet. Because, yes, I have a lot to learn.