“Hope that rises from the ashes of despair.”

This isn’t what I planned to write my second post on (I was thinking about explaining why I love pigeon pose). But that is a lesson in teaching yoga, and living life: make a plan, and being willing to change it.

I was do that thing we all do everyday: scrolling through Facebook, wasting time before getting to work, when I saw the face of a musician and poet that I had gotten to know many years ago when I was interning at an alternative weekly newspaper in Detroit. He had died unexpectedly in the heatwave a week ago, and the paper was doing a cover story about his life. A line that was written about his work has been qouted in many of the memorials: “his work focused on the hope that rises from the ashes of despair.”

So much of yoga is about feeling good, challenging yourself, and being present, but it can be too (both in the practice and in teaching) about finding hope when living in despair.  And before the hope comes, when there is just despair, yoga can be about sitting with that pain, breathing into it, knowing that it will pass, and that when it does it leaves the potential for something beautiful to be born.