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Acting But Not Doing

By Expert Author: Nate Rodney

Recently in a weekend class sandwiched between yoga teacher training weeks, Daniel paraphrased something very interesting from a book called the Second Book of Tao:

“Without the concept of an ‘Other’, there is no separate ‘Me’. Without the sense of a ‘Me’, there is nothing that can be ‘Other’. There is some force that determines life, but I can’t know what it may be. It doesn’t have any substance or form, it acts without doing, and it keeps the entire universe in orderly movement, seemingly functioning perfectly without me intervening.”

This idea of acting without doing really made me think, and shifted my outlook, especially because he shared this when we were in a challenging asana and pouring sweat – amazingly, this can be the best time for me to hear mind-expanding ideas or shift my perspective, which seems to be why Daniel’s yoga classes are so satisfying for me.

It is amazing to think that this entire globe we call Earth moves and works as one being, a single intricate system, effortless and yet full of movement.

In the Patanjali Yoga Sutra we learn about the concept of Stirham, Sukham, and Asanam, which means that each pose needs to be steady, and strong and effortful, but also gentle and smooth.

So as I learn yoga, I try to get to this feeling of “acting but not doing” – I work to relax while also giving each asana my full effort. It seems this quality of being can offer us entry into interconnectedness, a way to get to living from an authentic place in ourselves, and to connect to our deepest creativity.

As someone relatively new to yoga I am just discovering its power to help me open up – not just physically, but mentally and spiritually as well. It seems to offer a doorway into living on the edge of my growth while also surrendering and “going with the flow.”

What does “Going with the flow” even mean? Is it another way to say acting without doing? As a perfectionist of the Type-A variety, being surrendered in the flow of life can be challenging, but I imagine that for some people, the best way to grow is to work on taking action in life. I see yoga as offering both types an entry point into finding the balance between effort and surrender, activity and stillness, that can also be a guide us in our lives off the mat.

David Deida said something like, “Surrendering is letting go of your resistance to the complete openness that you are. It is letting go of the tension of the vortex of intensity you think you are and discovering the profound truth of the ocean that is the real you… past whatever limiting idea of self you still possess.”

My goal, then, is to be this ocean!

Radiantly Alive uplifts your world through unique, top-quality and powerfully transformative yoga experiences. Yoga certification from Radiantly Alive includes Yoga Alliance registered yoga teacher training and yoga certification programs in tropical Bali and other locations around the world. If you are looking for yoga teacher training using the keywords, yoga Bali or yoga Ubud, visit us today at www.radiantlyalive.com.

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