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The Practice of Letting Go

For some time I have thought that yoga demands an ongoing willingness to let go. We train physically by practicing asanas to loosen our bodies to unglue stuck hamstrings, loosen overly bound tendons and and unmoor organs that have become fixed. Ā Not only do we experience stickiness in our physical structure, but we all too often get stuck by events or circumstances in our lives. Psychological sticking may be more debilitating than physical tightness, and too, they are often coupled together.

Much of our training on the mat is preparation to let go. Reflecting on transiency is imperative to actualizing letting go. Situations in time are continuously dissolving like Ā snowflakes that fall onto the hood of a car with its engine running. That all things dissolve is referred to in the Tibetan practices of Mahamudra Ā³liberation upon arising. Ā As a thing comes into being, it is destined to dissolveā€¹it has the “mark” of dissolution.

Letting go is to liberate upon arising. This entails allowing things to change. Letting go is to acknowledge that nothing stays the same, all is impermanent and things change shape, change orientation, change substance. It is liberating to allow things to morph. This morphing is the Tao Ā and letting go is to be in the Way of the flow itself.

Alchemy + Aim