Mindbending Yoga

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What do you see? If you said a circle, you’d be correct. But there’s a lot more here than you’d think.

We’ve all heard of dark energy and dark matter. Truth be told, no one really knows what these energies are, only that they exist. If we knew what they were, they wouldn’t be called “dark.” But even things not easily detectable leave traces of its existence.

1. Dark Energy. We know the universe is expanding at an ever faster rate. Only way this could happen is if “something” were compelling the universe to accelerate its expanding. That something can only be an “energy” none of us are aware of, hence Dark Energy.

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2. Dark Matter.

As vast as this galaxy is, with 100-billion-plus stars, it’s the stars’ luminescence that gives it such breadth and volume. In fact, the actual stars only make up approximately 1% of the entire area of this galaxy.

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So what allows this galaxy to take shape? There isn’t enough gravity to hold all of these stars together. Meet Dark Matter. All that means is there is something “invisible” that fills in 99% of apparent emptiness to allow galaxies to take their various shapes.

3. Wedged between energy and matter is Yoga. There is no hierarchy among the three. But each is a crucial element to our notions of reality.

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What do you see above? A circle? You’d still be correct.

Yoga emphasizes the spiritual as much as the physical, which makes it unapproachable to some. The “mystical” element integral to Yoga seems to act as a barrier. But this mysticism is attainable in Yoga. It’s a question of degree.

Yoga won’t allow you to walk through walls, but it may help you tear down those walls or even allow you to see there were no walls to begin with.

But why are Dark Energy and Dark Matter accepted by most, despite no one knowing what they are? It seems we put so much stock in science — rightly so, most of the times — to the exclusion of what is obvious and right in front of our eyes.

What do you see? A circle? Maybe.

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Look at the picture below. What do you see?

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Looks hard to do. But I see something else. I see this…

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And this is a major feature of Yoga. At the end of the day, we are all quacks. Just joking. But I see the aesthetic, I see the resemblance, I see something beyond the obvious. If this is the extent of my mysticism, I count my blessings.

I’ve shown three circles so far. Yoga emphasizes the circular nature of our existence and that one’s action can and oftentimes does ripple through time and space. It’s called Karma. And we have a lot more control of our Karma, our destinies, than we give ourselves credit for.

Ok, getting back to those circles. Many of us live sedentary and stationary lives. We never think or see beyond what is immediately in front of us. With the tinniest altering of our bodies and our perceptions, we’d see that we’ve missed out on a universe of possibilities.

Those three circles may not be circles at all. They only appear to be so because we look at them head-on. But move to the left or right and you might see that the “circle” is in fact something entirely different.

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My friends, this is Yoga. And Swamis are the masters of showing. They are spiritual guides. They show people that change is possible on all levels. And what holds many of us back may come down to mere perspective.

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Just as we discovered dark energy and dark matter indirectly, so we must discover our personal spirit in the same manner.

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Warmest thanks to Integral Yoga Studios for supporting this article

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