Doggy Mind

I did yoga yesterday. I had to. I feel like these days my mind has been all over the place and I have not felt any peace within. I am so glad I decided to do it too because it really helped me to see where my mind is at. Within the first few minutes I was already having thoughts of turning it off and just sitting around instead. It was difficult and my ego didn’t like the challenge. I kept having thoughts of how stupid it was and how I was too pregnant to even be doing it. That led to thoughts of me being fat and out of shape and worrying about if I could ever do yoga or be in shape again.

All this continued on as I tried to just watch my thoughts and stay focused on my breathing and stretching. Finally at about 25 minutes into the DVD, my ego took a hike and I was beginning to get in touch with my true self. That still part that is not led by thoughts or influenced by anything, but is perfectly at peace in any moment. The part that is positive and loving, not constantly judgmental and dissatisfied.

As often is the case, I even cried during my yoga practice because once I got in touch with my true self, I felt a deep satisfaction with my life and was able to see how beautiful it really is. I had separated myself from my thoughts and feelings and felt the satisfaction of just being. I could feel the baby kicking inside of me and it became real to me how I am growing a life and going to be a mother to a beautiful new baby in really no time at all. I also felt so much appreciation for my body, my family and everything that I have. Once the positivity started flowing, I had worked myself into a very good mood!

Sometimes yoga loses it’s place in my life and other times it is what I live for. I think with every season of life that I go through things are different. One thing I know for sure is that it always, always helps me to relax and get in touch with who I really am. On the mat, everything else just falls away and there is only peace. I am able to be a more positive, loving person and hold so much more gratitude for my life when I practice yoga. Most importantly I have the opportunity to watch my thoughts and see how crazy my mind really is.

There is a concept in the book that I was reading (and should really still finish) Breath by Breath The Liberating Practice of Insight Meditation about having a doggy mind. The author Larry Rosenberg talks about how our mind is like a dog who continually chases after a fake plastic bone. Even though it has no nourishment on it whatsoever, the dog will repeatedly fetch it with great excitement. Our thoughts are often the same way, void of any real nourishment, yet we continue to chase after them in hopes of finding true happiness. We spend so much of our time thinking on the material plane and focusing on material goals, attempting to get somewhere or be somebody. We would rather be anywhere than where we are and anybody than who we are. There is a constant resistance in our minds to surrendering the doggy mind and just being. Our mind is continually fooled into believing that happiness is always somewhere ‘out there’ but never in the present.

I find that I am terribly guilty of this even though I try not to be. I waste a lot of my thoughts on things that are of no real value or nourishment. One such problem I have with the doggy mind is worry. I have always worried about everything, from whether I am doing enough to whether people like me or not. My mind, like that of everyone else tends to re-run past memories over and over or get lost in worrying about the future constantly stealing away the precious present.

This is why I find it so important to meditate and take time to watch the thoughts that create my actions and ultimately my reality. Some days are better than others and I find that it comes rather easily, other days it seems nearly impossible but that is why it is called practice.

In time I hope to someday come to the place where I have created a beautiful reality for myself. I know that I will never get it 100% and that life will never be perfect but I just hope that everyday I can begin to see more and more beauty in each and every day. I want to be fully alive and able to appreciate every moment, progressively becoming less attached to thoughts, feelings and material things. I want to know that happiness is just as much available to me now than at any other moment and it is only in that meditative stillness that I will ever experience it.