Before you heard the word yoga (which means union), the experience of it was available to you. You were able to allow awareness to come into your conscious state. When conscious awareness is present/active, you are able to be aware of/release yourself from, the grip of mind and the senses. The process of the mind and senses can be observed, because they are not you. Just as you can observe your hand typing on a keyboard, your hand is not you, it is your instrument. The same is true for your mind. Although it is very subtle and a little more challenging to remain engaged with, the tangible effect of being in the grasp or free from the grasp/influence of the mind and senses can also be observed. At this time you are becoming more conscious of your self, more awake to your self and how you tick. You become more of what influences you, your decisions and direction. Your experience, how you feel, is less dictated by the environment you are in. Connected with your self, that part of you that doesn’t change, and is unaffected by events, but can see them as they are.
You might think of it like this…
Once my vehicle was being repaired, and the price given when I went to pay was much more than I was quoted, without good reason. I questioned the cost. Initially people rushed around to find someone who ‘knew’, though who ever that was was out to lunch. I said I could do some work that I had with me in the lounge until they returned, no problem. Then, several reasons were given about what could have happened, or might happen, in order to finish the negotiation. There were a few disgruntled voices as I brought attention back to the facts, however the facts were continually glossed over in sped-up talk about this reason and that, in order to leave what was happening ‘now’. Eventually, when the person who ‘knew’ returned from lunch, I wrote down what I had been quoted, in an itemised way, so that the true facts of the matter had weight, were clear, and unmistakable. They could not be glossed over and disappear into conversation. Then I closed my mouth, did not invest myself emotionally and watched… No matter how much of a diversion might have been made, the truth of what was happening became increasingly apparent. The price came back down to within a few dollars of the original quote.
The truth was unavoidably present. I could have become heated and involved (those thoughts and feelings were probably the initial ones to come up), and possibly ended up frustrated and paying the inflated amount. Fortunately I stepped back internally, observed the internal reactions and stayed focussed on the facts, what was happening ‘now’.
Like the facts that I had written down, awareness brings weight to the present moment, it has gravity, this allows depth, meaning and context to be appreciated. I didn’t try to stop the ‘noise’ but kept returning to the present. I didn’t fight anything. Sitting in the present, knowing the internal and external distractions, I could do what was needed to keep the whole experience in the present and calm. Without being angry or being frustrated but recognising those feelings. I remained connected with myself. It was good practice, and I am actually glad for the practical experience. Though this is a practical example, you don’t have to wait for a seemingly difficult situation to get a deeper appreciation of your experience.
Yoga means union, connectedness. Being connected at a deeper level. We are always connected, but lose touch with this experience at times, and can end up flitting around on the surface, blown around by external influences and thoughts.
Connected inside = Connected outside