Our yoga focus for the coming weeks will come from The Untethered Soul, the journey beyond yourself, by Michael A Singer. This book is a way of asking ‘Who am I’.
In response to this question, Singer writes in Chapter 1, ‘You are not the voice of the mind; you are the one who hears it’. This is the start of understanding the Jnana yoga path – the path of knowledge and wisdom - to understand our true nature, the Self with a capital 'S' as distinct from the self with a small 's' which is our thoughts and ego. Singer's book explores the question renowned yogi Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950) is famous for encouraging us to ask each day ‘Who am I?’, as a way to attain inner freedom.
Chapter 1 ‘The Voice Inside your Head’: Do you notice the mental dialogue going on inside your head…? Constant, not stopping, even if you want it to…. It’s the voice that might be saying ‘no, I don’t have a voice in my head… well it doesn’t talk all the time....’ that’s ‘the voice in your head’.
It can be useful to get to know this voice and become familiar with its points of view and patterns and tendencies. You might notice it doesn’t mind which side of the conversation it’s on, it just likes to narrate to you, what it’s thinking.
While you can’t stop it, you can be less bothered or affected if you can step back and watch it in action. And become aware that if you’re hearing it talk, it’s not you…. It’s easy to become aware there’s a voice in there talking; not so easy to fathom that it’s talking and you’re listening – and that you are the one that notices; you’re not the voice in your head.
Many of us spend time in life trying to ‘find ourselves’ and look to the voice in our head to see which voice is us, but in reality we are none of these voices and our problem isn’t life but the commentary the mind makes up about what it perceives as happening ‘to us’ and around us. The voice in our head gives us a level of comfort that we are in control. It provides us with reasons and distractions and we judge things to help protect us and process what’s happening.
We process our current experiences to fit our views of past events and predictions of the future. This helps us feel in control and comfortable; but it can buffer you from living life, if the mind holds you back by trying to hold your world together.
This week, considering if you can become aware of yourself as the observer, the one who is aware; not the barrage of thoughts that come in unsolicited. Using thoughts/the voice in your head as a way to become more self aware and to grow, rather than being a source of worry and distraction.
Chapter 1 finishes with ‘Come to know the one who watches the voice, and you will come to know one of the great mysteries of creation’.
This may be a new concept but definitely worth exploring if you’re wanting to experience a more harmonious relationship with the voice in your head.
Along with classical yoga classes, for which this is our weekly focus, we offer:
Yoga classes in bayside Melbourne on Monday, Tuesday & Thursday evenings and Wednesday mornings.
Qigong - Movement & Meditation class on Wednesday mornings.
Introduction to meditation courses running throughout the year.
Corporate Programs - Intro to Meditation (a 5 week course) and Cultivating a Healthy Lifestyle (a 6 month program)
Wellness coaching for individuals