Revised from my Journal, written in 2004
He lies on his back, palms open, eyelids softly shut.
He’s instructed to let go only moments after he’s been coaxed to hold on.
Surrenders a body wrung out from the practice, empties a mind, trusting me that it will come back.
It takes nerves of steel.
He has not been here before.
A country Southerner new to the city, new to yoga and to me,
Open minded and readily vulnerable, he is spectacular and brave at a time mysterious yoga has just stuck her head out of yurt and into the health clubs.
There’s a tidal wave of fear.
Shaken, he waits it out until released from this last pose; savasana.
I tell him I cannot explain his fear but that it may be residue from the past; perhaps a picture will come to him if he sits with it allowing reflection while his cells are stirring.
He’s experiencing the effect of yoga in the powerful way that happens in the beginning and I tell him so.
And that fear is not his enemy but a frightened messenger who has escaped imprisonment so that he might become better acquainted.
Knowledge of the past empowers the future as the future is entwined forever with the past.
My memories have come quietly in this twilight sleep and changed my impressions in the present light as his may do now.
Memories are stored in the body and this body was born of another and that of another and the first person you ever came from is stored in you too.
Discoveries of events that happened in our lifetime can be sorted but there are also insights that have no picture or words that do not make sense but shift our awareness anyway.
We change our past by our perception of it and we recognize distorted impressions of ourselves. We release the pain that our ancestors might have perpetuated, pain that was perpetuated against them as by consciousness we become untangled from those distortions.
We revisit our habits caused by pain and the pain caused by habit too.
We change history.
We are time travelers.