I have found that Esoteric Yoga supports my body and the way I live in every aspect of my life, which as I grow older, is an invaluable gift to help me not to drop into the “old age consciousness” of inevitable decline.
I have tried many forms of yoga in the past, but with all of them I felt there was something forced and hard, with little or no room for individual differences. When I was introduced to Esoteric Yoga it was very different. Here was a form that allowed each person to express very simple everyday movements, feeling for themselves, with no unnatural positions or postures that put the body under strain. This is very important for older people, not to push their bodies further than is appropriate.
More important than anything else for me was realising what yoga is truly about, what its name means, and that is – union.
Union with what? Between what? I came to realise slowly how Esoteric Yoga asks us to consciously, in every moment, be present in our bodies through these simple everyday movements, and so be connected with our souls through this union of mind and body. In this total focus on being in the moment and fully aware of all that is going on, there is a profound stillness that holds us, and space happens within us and around us and time seems to expand.
I find I grow in love and respect for my body, developing an unknown tenderness, moving at an even pace, expanding, and feeling there is so much more to me than my ageing body.
There are so many lessons learned and integrated as I practise the template that forms the basis of an Esoteric Yoga session most days, but this is something that isn’t always ‘done’ on the yoga mat… What I love about what this modality offers, is that everything becomes yoga – from brushing my teeth to having a conversation.
For a person growing older who has driven herself and rushed eagerly through life, damaging herself on the way, this is a huge gift. The body slows down naturally in so many ways, but being able to consciously accept this process in every move brings a loving and respectful rhythm into our old age, with no fighting nor with a quality of being driven anymore.
Through these nine years since I first began, I have come to realise how Esoteric Yoga gives me the opportunity to become more aware of all that is happening in my body, all the aches and pains coming from that hard way of living in the past that I have been choosing to ignore. The deep attention and union allows me to feel more and accept what I am feeling. The more I accept, the more I am able to let those tensions go. I am learning, after this long lifetime of searching for healing from outside sources, that a yoga session is not to make me feel good or attain a certain state of body health, but to be honest about how I am and how I am living, and this is a real life-saver coming from inside myself!
Accepting the responsibility of working this way is one of the most valuable things for someone in old age, for it brings me into deeper and deeper contact with myself, ever exploring, ever moving in an increasingly more gentle quality… With such self-awareness, life can never be boring or closing in, in fact it is expanding in every direction.
I have had many different experiences in an Esoteric Yoga session, from the extremely practical, such as the feeling of what is happening in my body and the strains and flows, to the immanent feeling that I understand to be God… the vibrations and warmth and fullness inside me which expand beyond my body and join me in union with every other human being.
In fact, "being-ness" is the key, being all that I am and all I can feel in the present moment.
There is a beautiful stillness which I carry inside me wherever I go, with whatever I do. This seems in tune with the natural qualities possible for older people, if we actually embrace the process of deepening in our wisdom and a tender relationship with ourselves and our bodies through these years.
To grow into what is naturally my elder way of being gives me a feeling of the grace offered at every level.
Elder, Charity Volunteer Worker
Frome, Somerset UK