Ah! I love this idea of new beginnings; of starting with a clean canvas and an array of paints, brushes and ideas at my disposal. Today is the first day of classes for my last semester as an undergraduate. Having started this journey back in 2006 in California, this (clearly) hasn’t been a direct path, but it’s interesting to notice that the end is near. All the twists and turns have led towards a point, and even though the path will continue (so long as I am inhaling and exhaling), it’s nice to put a little marker in the earth and say “Okay, that much of my journey is complete.” Kind of like a birthday or an anniversary.
This morning I taught a yoga class at the University. The first class. Another beginning. I wasn’t really expecting anyone to come, but it was a nice surprise to see 6 beautiful faces out on their mats, early before classes. The class itself was energizing yet soft. Many of the girls had never taken a yoga class before and I was both honored and excited to be part of their beginning. I was nervous, too. Even though I have taught a few classes at the studio where I have grown up in my yoga practice over the past couple of years, switching to a new environment filled with totally new faces… I was out of my comfort zone. Yet, drawing inspiration from Danny Arguetty’s book, Nourishing the Teacher, I found it so helpful in tuning into what it means to start something new. I used his section on mornings (“Graceful Beginnings”) and found the words of Byrd Baylor so heart-warming:
“Some people say there is a new sun every day, that it begins its life at dawn and lives for one day only. They say you have to welcome it. You have to make the sun happy. You have to make a good day for it. Yoga have to make good world for it to live its on-day life in. And the way to start, they say, is just by looking east at dawn. When they look east tomorrow, you can, too. Your song will be an offering — and you’ll be one more person in one more place at one more time in the world saying hello to the sun, letting it know you are there. If the sky turns a color sky it never was before, just watch it. That’s part of the magic. That’s the way to start a day.”
Mornings are like those beautiful beginnings. Everyday we start with a blank canvas, even if we don’t realize it. Waking up early, embracing the day so that we can embrace a semester… ah! It really does mean something to start with the right intention.
Namaste, and may this day bring a new sense of joy and hope to your life.