When my eyes are closed, I become invisible to the people around me (at least it feels I do). Closing my eyes has allowed me to find a pathway to introspection, focus on the practice and a way to challenge myself.
The vision of my physical body through my physical eyes at times leads to self doubt, criticism and a little too much thought about what others may think. But, when my eyes are closed I depend on the interpretation of my inner eye. Looking inward, it’s easier to experience the practice as is bubbles up from within. What I see is based on more than what the practice looks like, it’s defined by what it feels like. Denying the external view has allowed me to move past competitive comparisons and become more accepting of my physical attributes.
A while back I read a blog about things you’ll start doing, now that you’re doing yoga. One of the items was; you will start taking picture of yourself in yoga poses, often. When I first read this, I thought, “Oh, not me.” I hate having my picture taken. But, it was true, it started innocently enough, trying to get a better view of my shoulder dipping in a challenging arm balance. Then, it snowballed to pictures during workshops and at outdoor yoga events.
Recently, I had the opportunity to have some yoga pictures taken by a professional photographer. It was a fun night with other yoginis pretending we were yoga models. But, the most fun was the revelation of the resulting images. This is how I look when my eyes are closed! The photographer was able to capture how I feel throughout my whole being. It was lovely to find the internal view matched the external one.
If you are in the Omaha area and are looking for a photographer, consider Christopher Tierney of CTF Foto.
(This blog was originally posted on yoginiinprogress.blogspot.com.)