A rolling stone gathers no moss
When I was fifteen, I listened to the album Power of rapper ICE-T. At the age of sixteen, my friend and I watched him perform live on stage in Rotterdam. We didn't catch the last train home and we spent the night just walking the Rotterdam streets until in the morning the train of 7 AM got us back home. I remember I was a paperboy (papergirl, haha) at that time and that my mom had to deliver my newspapers in the morning. Spending the night outside in a city like Rotterdam as a sixteen year old sounds dangerous and irresponsible somehow now. But back in the days I didn't see danger. All I saw was excitement and adventure and I remember feeling free. Luckily my parents let me do my thing. Somehow they trusted me. My dad likes to tell me that he knew that at a young age he already realized I knew my limits and I could keep myself out of trouble.
Back to the yoga. This week I practiced four times. I skipped Sunday's Led Class as I was visiting my family. Yes, this is a somewhat lame excuse because I could've visited my family after the Class, but I chose to go early to visit them myself. Monday through Thursday I practiced Mysore Style. Yesterday was a Moon Day so no practice. It was a Full Moon and I felt it. I was tired, somewhat annoyed, not in the mood for company and I wanted to eat crisps so bad that at 9 in the evening, I put on my shoes to go to the store to buy crisps and I ate them in bed.
This week at the studio I missed some of my fellow practitioners. I contacted one of them and asked where she was. Maybe she had a women's holiday. It wasn't like that. She told me she had doubts. Not about the practice, but about the method. About the teacher. According to her a lot is going on in Mysore and in the Ashtanga world. I didn't know exactly what she meant and I didn't ask her. (Later on I realized maybe it had something to do with 'Listgate'.) I tried to convince her to still come to the shala in the morning.
'It is so much nicer to practice with friends than to practice by yourself,' I said.
'I just cannot do it,' she said. 'I don't want to be in that space right now. I cannot handle it.'
I saw she was going through some rough patches and I knew I wasn't going to convince her. As I am the type of person who is easily influenced by other people, I started thinking myself. Am I having doubts too? Do I care about Listgate? Do I have troubles with the teacher? What do I know? Who am I to try to convince someone who's practicing for years and years as I am only for a very short time?
I did the thinking. And I stopped it. I just want to do this practice. I know I do not care about Listgate. I am very grateful for my teacher and he teaches me a lot of things, but I am not going to die if he quits tomorrow. Do I have doubts? Yes, of course. I can have doubts about ANYTHING. But for now I think: When in doubt, do your practice.
Back to ICE-T. He is a master. A teacher. He inspires me just as much as my yoga teacher does. At the age of sixty (60!), ICE-T is still as cool to me as when I was fifteen. This week he wrote his advice on Twitter:
1. Stay ACTIVE, a rolling stone gathers no moss
2. Avoid stressful people.
3. PMA: Positive Mental Attitude
What's the point I am trying to make? I had to ask myself. Teachers have power. ICE-T has the power. But it's up to me who I listen to.