We humans are conditioned to think, feel and react. And we do so mostly when life starts becoming life and it starts downing on us. Our thoughts and feelings have a substantial impact on our brain, our attitudes, and ultimately our reality. But how do we go about these thoughts and feelings without letting them eat us? How do we keep reminding ourselves that we are not our feelings? Our thoughts or our beliefs?
I found yoga to be is one of these practices that inspires you to slow down, take a look at those thoughts and feelings from a different, let’s say a third perspective, which will then translate to a more opener mind, a more rested one. Through yoga and meditation, I’ve learned to understand those thoughts and feelings, accept they are there but most importantly, to let them go – we’re in a constant flux of change and so are those beliefs in our head. The magic here is to let them go and to rest in that state of change, of mindfulness.
I’ve been on and off yoga for years and have tried yoga of all sorts – Power Yoga, Bikram Yoga, Naked Yoga–. I knew I had found a way to embed a lighter mindset into my daily life through yoga, I was just looking for the right sort of yoga for me – for me only.
A few months ago, I met a yoga instructor, by accident, and he introduced me to “Rocket yoga” a.k.a “The Rocket”, a style of yoga developed by someone in San Francisco during the 80s. This type of yoga is rooted in the Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga practices. The idea here is that it will “get you faster”, as a rocket! That’s right, it is a dynamic, fast-paced flow of yoga, taking you to fitness nirvana faster. And although the point is not to get there faster, the flow is definitely intense and exhaustive.
Now here comes the interesting catch! Next to yoga, I’ve discovered how music has become a meditative source of inspiration. Historically, music arose from devotional practices in cultures all over the world. Think about the Om, which has been chanted for the past 4000 years and it is believed to be the first sound, which can be found in all of creation: In cultures in countries such as India, Greece, Mexico and Mali music has served as the manifested sound of the divine, a way to take us to nirvana.
Talking to this rocket yoga instructor, we talked about incorporating slow-world-house music into his practice. Yes! You read that right, electronic-world-afro-arab-amazonic tunes added to your daily dose of rocket yoga. By bringing these two practices together you can create an insular state of reflection and awareness – the idea of sounds and music is, just like with your thoughts and feelings, not to force them out of your mind, but to accept them and let them go again.
It might be your sort of mix, or it might not.
Laura Beltrán Villamizar is a Bogotá born, bred in Florida, The Hague, Buenos Aires, Brussels and Berlin. An epicurean traveller and photographer – she also romanticises cities and coffee way out of proportion. Life brought her to Amsterdam, where she currently lives and works. She loves slow travel, slow food and slow journalism and can also have a cup of freshly brewed coffee at any time, any. She can eat her weight in avocados and loves music, nearly all sorts. She embraces dancing, and playing and DJ’ing, adoring beats and drums and hips being shaken.