The Bliss path to Self Realisation becomes obscured ‘over time’; relatively speaking, time can be an enemy as well as a friend; your ‘Bliss suffers with the mere passage of time without regular reminders to keep you on track… here is ~NEW BLOG~ YM’s take:


I WOULD NEVER presume that you don’t know how to ‘Follow Your Bliss’ but having given some stones to our Challengers recently with just this philosophical statement I had a thought ‘maybe I should expound on this from a Yoga Matters point of view’ for newer ‘Bliss followers’ :).  In theory, it is an exhortation to examine YOUR life to discover YOUR purpose and the path that leads YOU to feelings of completeness and wellbeing and then to pursue that wholeheartedly.

Leo Tolstoy said “Everyone wants to change the world but no one thinks to change themselves“.  We simply cannot change everybody else.  We desire change because the sum of our personal day to day and learned experiences can 🙂 ‘annoy’ us {note 🙂 there were 50 words I could have chosen instead of annoy :), feel free to substitute your own choice word}. We believe our inner life can only be improved by the endless daily task of managing external circumstances and so out of habit we grab hold of the ‘annoyance’ and store it and then try to manipulate everything around it because our mind has decided that certain things HAVE to happen outside of us in order for us to feel ‘ok’ to be able to let go of the annoyance.  In doing so we torture ourselves.  We are manipulating outside/compensating because our inside conditions are not ok yet. In our over stimulated culture with its endless socially induced fears it is easy to lose sight of our main purpose in the frenzy of contiiiiiiinuously trying to process all the stored fear and annoyance and tolerate all that annoying existential reality and trying to ‘manage’ everything and everyone around us.

THE ONLY WAY IS TO WORK ON OURSELVES.  If we are ok with ourselves then there is no need to impose our fear or manipulate ‘others’. We won’t ‘need’ anything!

MANY schools hold that Bliss and enightenment are the last stage of ‘achievement’, only for the adepts, the few… but one of our principles at Yoga Matters is that it is ‘available’ to reach and to have from the very outset of our practice for those who are willing.  The Bliss path exists ‘within’ always and so it must also be your guide, ALWAYS. It is a journey ‘to’ and ‘of’ Self Realization. It is the basis of living a good life. It changes the way we react to and perceive the world around us even tho’ the world has not changed!  I don’t think there is any deep magic to this but do take care that others don’t try to distract or construct what you should follow. And they will. Often.  Whatever is obscuring your Bliss now you will have to SLOW DOWN to notice it! The hardest part of my job is getting people to ‘stop’ or ‘slow down’ in their practice! THAT GLORIOUS ‘SPACE BETWEEN’ gets overlooked in the race to end game. We miss out on all sorts of moments in our lives when we live ‘by our head’. We miss the journey in pursuit of the destination! How do you get it across to someone living in their head that in order to speed things up you have to slow things down first!

AT LEAST ‘BE’ IN THE RIGHT PLACE to get reminded that you set the conditions in the first place so that means you can choose to let go of ‘the conditions’ and when you do you discover what was always there underneath.  IN A REGULAR YOGA PRACTICE you become aware that you are not your mind or your learned experiences; YOU ARE THE CONSCIOUSNESS THAT IS AWARE OF YOUR MIND AND WAYS OF EXPRESSION. Thoughts are not facts! At YM we try to help people create a new mindset (for want of a better word :)). Choice combinations of words, quotes, encouragement, reminders, affirmations, adages, idioms, silence, stillness, a general positive, uplifting feed at least for the duration of the class, filtering into the mind of the practitioner to push all the ‘unecessary’ and unhelpful away.

WARNING! FOLLOWING BLISS OUTSIDE YOGA SCHOOL ~The numbers of people who have sat in our chair in reception (when we had a chair 🙂 now it is just a theoretical chair 🙂 ) and said “I hate my job, I think I’ll become a Yoga instructor” (like it is some sort of easy option!!).  No doubt, doing what you love, your ‘vocation’ allows you to make your unique contribution in the world but I believe there are some important parameters, and, unless it involves going off grid, I suggest that one of them is that you’re able to pay your dues/bills. It is an absolute must that it works financially so you can keep a roof over your head and food on the table (recent ‘thin years’ events aside).  You do not have to give up your job, change family or move country to have a regular experience of Bliss. Bliss does not merely exist on the level of ‘thinking’ and ‘doing’ only things that ‘fulfil your purpose’. Nothing exists in isolation. This error of understanding dominates and destroys many chances for Self Realisation. Family duty and responsibilities cannot be overlooked just to ‘Follow your Bliss’; that is not what this is about. Sacrifice your duty to those close to you and I’d hazard a guess any subsequent results will never sit well with you deep down.  Fulfilling your purpose and Bliss isn’t about being ‘instantly’ and ‘constantly’ ‘happy’ in perpetuity.  Fulfilling your purpose must be an honest act and whether it is a natural quality or a skill you learn it will require integrity to do it consistently over a long term. If you walk away from your personal duties to others you may very well destroy your integrity and damage your ability to fulfill your purpose. Is that Blissful? Mmmmm. I’d say Bliss exists in the previously overlooked space ‘in between’, the glory is in the ‘now’ moment, but most of us also have to exist in the other moments too surrounded by others and their other perspectives and their way of being in the world. If they are not on your frequency that is ok; you are not responsible for their Bliss; they have their own path to follow. You may have to adjust yourself a little to be amongst them but you are a Bikram Yogi so YOU KNOW YOU CAN! This is how you change the world; when they notice something different about you… then the change can begin for them, if they choose.  In the meantime, once you have tapped into that Bliss moment then at least you can reserve your space and schedule ‘regular moments’ on your Yoga mat.

BACK TO YOGA SCHOOL ~ WE KNOW SOME OF THIS CAN BE TOO ‘SUBTLE’ FOR THE NEW PRACTITIONER. Our instruction comes from one level of consciousness and are received at quite another level by many… but they can begin perhaps by turning up 🙂 and we can begin by providing the safe space for people to be vulnerable as they navigate their new Yoga world.  WE KNOW that moving slowly through transitions is harder mentally and physically perhaps because new people come to class initially to ‘do’ and ‘acquire’ not to ‘be’ and ‘let go’ (“I do Yoga, yeah” etc etc) and proceed to power on like they approach everything else in life to get things done. But WE ALSO KNOW that at least on your mat at Yoga Matters you will get the necessary reminders until you grasp the meaning of ‘pausing’ before you engage. In time there will be more slow motion movement as you seek out that sense of ease.  Then there will be time and space to observe, listen, review, repeat what works; that is you saying YES to the natural flow of the order of things in the universe even when we don’t understand ‘how’ or see ‘end game’.

FROM A YOGIC PERSPECTIVE it is more beneficial for a practitioner to connect with their heart center in posture for ‘one second’ rather than hold a pose for one minute with no connection whatsoever; consider what you are experiencing for the duration of the pose rather than be preoccupied with time spent in the pose or depth of the pose. Yes Bikram Yoga IS intensely physical BUT. YOU CAN HAVE A DEEP AND POWERFUL YOGA EXPERIENCE EVERY SINGLE TIME YOU PRACTICE. In ‘letting go’ of all that ‘obscures’ you immediately arrive at a place where you are aware of the truth: That the universe, by its very nature, is simply all about taking care of you.  If you allow it. You are finally trusting your intuitive wisdom.  NOW there is space for Bliss.  ONE SECOND AT A TIME. THAT IS HOW YOU TAKE YOUR BLISS.

HAPPY to be your witness!

Trisha & Darren

Om Om Om Satchitananda

Dec/Jan 22/23

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