On Embracing Change

During times of transition, we must answer a call to explore what was lost and what is gained. Change is an opportunity to look at what is possible in our lives, even during difficult times. What does Kripalu Yoga say about sitting with change, with uncertainty, or with a challenge? Kripalu faculty Monique Schubert reflects on her experience living the practice.

There are two ways in which change is a part of the practice of yoga, the first is an offer of change within ourselves. If we have trouble with stress, flexibility, or control over emotions, yoga can be seen as a solution to those troubles. In ways that are both reliable and unpredictable, we see ourselves making progress toward the goal that brought us to the mat in the beginning.

Then there are the moments when life changes in ways that are unexpected and unwelcome, when the delicate balance we’ve been cultivating is suspended by circumstances beyond our control. For the past 20 months, I’ve kept a book of Swami Kripalu’s quotes nearby, thumbing through the pages for his concise teachings. He addressed the persistence of struggle and suffering in daily life with this guidance; “When difficulties and hardships arise, do not stop.”

Whether we embrace the hope of change and encounter obstacles on the way towards our inner aim, or if the world shakes around us, it is returning to practice, again and again, that will sustain, nourish—and perhaps even strengthen us.

Monique Schubert, MFA and lead Kripalu faculty member, uses her 20 years of experience as an artist and educator to develop yoga and mindfulness programs for schools, workplaces, and cultural institutions.

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