Have you ever felt empty after a dream came through? Felt hollow after a goal was reached? Experienced a void opening up inside you once you got what you wanted?
The first noble truth in Buddhism is that life is suffering. The second noble truth is that suffering is caused by craving and desire.
We are constantly desiring new objects, relationships, positions, conditions etc, falsely thinking that once we have them, everything will change and we will be happy and at peace. But once we own that new piece of clothing that we 'needed' to complete our wardrobe, and once we are in that relationship that we thought would make us feel whole, once we have signed the contract for the job we competed for, and once we managed to embody this or that asana that we worked at for so long, we may come to realize, that nothing has really changed. Those expensive limited edition sneakers give us very little happiness when we step in dog shit while wearing them. Or when we get into a huge argument with a close friend while having them on. Maybe we still feel lonely or empty in that relationship/job/despite being able to get into headstand? What now? An abyss opens up and in that abyss another desire appear. But if I only get a promotion/that fancy hand bag/another partner who's kinder, funnier, hotter ... then, finally, everything will be the way it ought to be. Then I will feel good. Repeat and fail. Once again.
How can we stop the vicious circle? How can we stop the craving? The madness? Yoga is said to be the state where we don't need anything. But how do we get there? Through buying another pair of pricey yoga pants? Through doing more chaturangas?
Yoga is both a noun and a word. It is both a destination and an action. I don't talk about yoga as merely asana, that is or can be part, a vital part of it for sure, but I don't think it will take you all the way. Yoga is a way into the present moment, into the now, and when we are fully and wholly engulfed by it, there is no room for craving, for desire, because NOW is perfect. It's both empty and full. It's still and it sways, dances. We catch glimpses of it when our attention gets focused. This happens in asana practice, but also in other activities; sex, cooking, riding, dancing etc. We can augment the glimpses from blips to stretches of uninterrupted NOW through the practice of meditation. The more you practice turning the gaze inwards, the more magical and perfect the outside word will appear. It's weird, but it works. Try it!