I love the word “magic” because it is such a versatile term. It’s sort of a blanket phrase that I can ascribe to anything and everything I don’t immediately understand about the universe. While this may seem like a Medieval way of looking at the world I can assure you that there is an underlying logic to it. Normally as I learn more about a given subject the less magical it becomes. It’s just when I am confronted by something that is new, mysterious, bizarre, unknown or complex that I will chalk that phenomena up to magic.
When I first encountered Yoga it was all magic to me. I was in complete awe as I watched these people contort themselves into postures and positions I never dreamed I would be capable of. Back in those days I couldn’t even touch my toes or balance on one leg to save my life. As I stumbled through my first few classes in confusion and discomfort I received a lot of encouragement from my fellow yogis and instructors. I heard countless stories about how everyone starts off in a similar awkward place and then builds up to greater levels of flexibility and balance. While that was reassuring to hear it still didn’t give me much confidence that I could ever pull off something as daunting and magical as a headstand.
As my Yoga practice evolved I noticed some interesting developments. They were subtle at first but more noticeable as time progressed. With each passing class I gained a small degree of flexibility and confidence. My first breakthrough came the day I was able to unlock the mystery behind touching my own toes. Then I discovered the wonders of balancing on one leg. Things which come so easily now were such obstacles back in the early stages. As I slowly mastered more and more of the basics I found myself less intimidated by the more complex poses. What had once seemed like magic now felt feasible.
I distinctly remember the first time I pulled off a headstand. It was such a crowning achievement and I took tremendous pride in my accomplishment. I had finally conquered a relatively difficult pose that required balance, flexibility and above all faith. The best part though was when I came out of the pose. I looked around the studio and caught a few newbies looking at me in wonder and amazement. I finally had the Yoga magic.