Michael Stone is one of those rare teachers that is able to bridge traditional wisdom with contemporary living. I have had the opportunity and joy of practising with him a few times, and his books are an extension of his in-person teachings. As a yoga/Buddhist teacher and psychotherapist, he writes with clarity and passion, urging us to live fully and with presence. In one of his books, Awake in the World: Teachings from Yoga and Buddhism for Living an Engaged Life, he relates that contained in the practice of yoga and Buddhism is the continual reminder that we are not discovering wisdom, but recovering it.
“Yoga teachings are not a response to life that stands apart from its movement. Yoga is a living question that continually points its practitioner back toward his or her own life, back into the body, straight into community. An ongoing practice recognizes that there is a transcendent mystery beyond the techniques that a practice employs. Awakening is not the end result of a systematized process. Reawakening love and intimacy for one’s self and beyond requires practice. This is not because love is something far away from us but because we forget. We forget that intimacy is near. We forget how to relax with others. We forget we are whole. Realization is a kind of remembering rather than an achievement or virtuosic accomplishment. Practice awakens the dormant and often invisible interiors of mind, body, and heart in order to establish a more tender, responsive, creative, and active self.”
How can the way we eat be a facet of responsible living? Through the act of cooking, sharing food, and nourishing ourselves, we can practise yoga: practise being awake, giving love, taking responsibility, and being in relationship. How can yoga manifest through our daily actions?