New students often ask, “When will I get yoga?” implying a time frame, say in a year. New students in the studio often show up saying that they are “experienced” yogis and they are ready for an advanced class when, in fact, they’ve only taken one session with another teacher. Fast results are the American Way! It’s a part of our mindset, for better or worse. The new student signs up for one class per week and believes she’ll look like Christy Turlington in no time.
The reality is that though many students of this ancient art experience life/body -changing moments after only one or two classes, many more find results of practice only after several months of dedicated effort. The results are often stunning, don’t get me wrong. But they do take time and effort.
I like to think of my yoga practice operating on a geologic timescale. B.K.S. Iyengar, who practiced five hours per day until he died at 95, “Got it” after many many years of rigorous daily practice. Above is a video from the Ann Arbor Y in 1976, thirty-eight years ago when Mr. Iyengar was 57! Below is an interview thirty years later,with Charlie Rose. If you scroll past the George Clooney interview, you’ll reach Mr. Iyengar’s inteview.
Mr. Iyengar died today after giving the world his body and mind. I’m saddened by his passing, but endlessly grateful for the insights and teachings he shared for so many years. They’ve changed my life in deep and dramatic ways.