Who am I?
What is my purpose?
These are two of the questions that Pacheco’s book addresses when it comes to the Vijnanamaya layer of the 5 Koshas. The Jnana path of yoga is the path of knowledge and that makes sense as the Vijnanamaya layer is the intellectual layer.
In the practice of Jnana yoga we seek to understand deeper who we are and why we are here. This is a practice I have described before using the Dharmachakra Mudra. Asking, “What comes next?” “Why am I here?” and “How do I serve?” are all part of that deeper exploration and the path toward enlightenment.
The third question that Pacheco asks is
When does my intellectual layer thrive?
This is more important to me at this moment than the first two questions. Tomorrow is my last day teaching at CFCC for awhile. I don’t know for sure if I will return there, but I hope to. I have been teaching yoga there for the past 3 years and with each successive semester I have learned a little more about myself and about yoga. I have been growing intellectually through my practice and through teaching. That will be going away this fall as I transition to teaching a different type of curriculum at UNCW.
Does that mean that I won’t be learning anything new or anything new about myself? Not at all, but it won’t be yoga driven and I worry that I will lose a lot of that deep and meaningful self-study. I have new things to learn in order to teach these new classes and I will be challenging myself in a different physical way. I will also have access to a pool, so I will be challenging myself to relearn how to swim for fitness.
The Wellness Inventory program that I’ve been working through this summer has been a new learning experience and it has encouraged me to set new goals for connecting to the many different aspects of my own wellness. One thing that I have been motivated to do is meditate more and to spend time breathing and playing with my kids. I’m not as successful at these elements (so far) as I had hoped, but I hope that teaching this will also help affirm these practices outside of yoga for me. Remember, I’m an Obliger and it may help me to commit to changes by committing to my students.
Finally, my intellectual layer thrives when I’m reading. I’ve started a new Gretchen Rubin book and I hope to find more and more time to read. I have some introspection going on with that reading as well and I’m learning more about myself and how to be the best version of me I can be. So, now I ask
What is it that helps you grow intellectually?
How do you learn?