It the recent conversations around the use of "namaste" that gives me a moment of pause. I so much want to comment, put in my 2 cents... and yet, alas - I watch the response change as the minutes tick by. Like many yoga teachers, I say namaste as a way to honor the origins of the practice that means so much to me... and a way to honor and celebrate the shared community, energy, and journey. As of right now, I will continue to say it... I will however open myself to my students to their opinions if I have earned their respect to say it.
I also want to mention the "I am a yogi..." It took me years to be able to say that... as I didn't say it lightly. I really feel that this practice, yoga, meets us where we need it most and that the process of waking up is one of both deconstruction and construction. It's an evolution and continue circle of birth, life, and death. I had to deconstruct the perfectionists to see myself as a yogi even though I couldn't do all the poses... through the identity of a yogi, I embraced the 8 limb path and worked through it in my every day life... now the identification of a yogi has a completely different mean, one that's less concrete... I feel that your journey, whatever it may be is welcomed by the practice of yoga... and I'm so grateful that my yoga mat doesn't speak - because man, there's too many people talking. Including me. Sigh. Just get on your mat people... at home... at a studio... inside... outside... breathe deep into your belly and simply be EMPOWERED to be YOU.