Language, logic, and “yoga”

Language and logic may be closer to the “spiritual practice” of yoga than you have recognized. Indeed, both of the words (logic and language) have Latin roots that go back to a Sanskrit root word: yoga.

(Yoga is also the root of the words junction, jugular, join, joint, link, leg, loyal, and even reLIGion. Some people may also know the Greek word LOGOS, which is also a derivative of the Sanskrit word YOGA.)

So, let’s stay grounded in simple, obvious, and uncontroversial example. (Because sometimes when I am “stirring a pot,” I want to slow down the rate that I am stirring or even reverse the direction of the stirring.)

Let’s consider the phenomenon of hyperventilation. It can happen in a wolf or human and so on.

Do we begin by accepting the existence of hyperventilation and respecting it? Or, do we panic in distress and hyperventilate about hyperventilation to attempt to “cultivate it less?”

it is rather easy to interrupt hyperventilating, and all of the methods involve slowing down the exhalation of CO2. In some yoga practices, we may hyperventilate in very specific ways, but then also block one nostril and the mouth to limit exhalation to a single nostril. If you are familiar with that method, then you may know the effects of using it.

(Restricting the airways can interrupt the hyperventilation and result in a sudden increase of levels of CO2 in the bloddstream, and since CO2 must be present in order to carry O2 from the blood cells over to the cells outside of the blood vessels, increasing CO2 levels can be a very good thing. Hyperventilation is basically a biochemical panic caused by having levels of CO2 that are too low.)

Once I know how to accept and respect my own suffering and even the ways that I may have been habitually cultivating my on suffering, then I can stop or reduce or refine those habits. I can bring attention and mindfulness to them.

What does the activity of agonizing produce? Agony is the result.

Is it possible that some masters of wizardry have trained the masses to practice agonizing and produce agony? Yes, that is possible! Maybe they program the masses to be hysterical about a wide ranges of issues like cholesterol and suffering and climate change and distributions of military technology and, one of my favorites, being possessed by a living entity called “a cancer” that will spread and grow and eat the organism that hosts the parasitic cancer demon.

So, as for these diabolical wizards (to the extent that they exist outside of bedtime stories used by adults to manipulate the emotions of children), maybe they have even programmed your intentions. Maybe they have programmed you to be ashamed of what they do and to have contempt for them.

For the one who deeply respects hysteria and is well-developed in the skill of relaxing their own hyperventilation reflexes, the experience of life is not the same as in other modes. Before, when I gloriously and heroically defended the truths that were delivered to me through indoctrination, there were patterns of chronic physical tension that corresponded to “channeling my emotions” toward socially-programmed targets (and repressing or blocking certain other “anti-social” or shameful emotions). In other words, shame (and guilt) were the sea in which I swam, like water to a fish.

What happened as a result of my emotions being socially manipulated? I was encouraged to develop in ways that were at least occasionally rewarded, such as in the use of humor. However, perhaps unlike some of the characters in the movie Napoleon Dynamite, society did not promote in me a development of my ninja sword skills. When I realized that swordsmanship skills not only would not help me to impress females but would not be part of any job application that I would be submitting, my initial interests at age 7 for becoming a
professional ninja had generally disintegrated by the age of 17.

So, my skills in verbal competition were more rewarded than my skills in physical competition. (Plus, since I was not raised especially wealthy nor especially poor, I had no particular momentum in the direction of competing in the business world.) I also have had the luxury of “benign neglect” which has led, after some rather challenging complications, to the arising of mindfulness, perceptiveness, and clarity.

I now have the relative social advantage (from my perspective) of being no longer bound by many of the disadvantages programmed in to the masses. Many of them suffer ABOUT things. They DO the activity of suffering.

That is distinct from experiencing challenges in general. There are many ways to experience a challenge. Suffering through the challenge is not the only way.

Indeed, the word “suffer” can be used in a few ways. Do you know the root of the word “suffrage?”

I am reminded of these lyrics from a song released in 1989 (by the group “10,000 Maniacs”):

Trouble me, disturb me with all your cares and your worries.
Trouble me on the days when you feel spent.
Why let your shoulders bend underneath this burden when my back is sturdy and strong?
Trouble me.
Speak to me, don’t mislead me, the calm I feel means a storm is swelling;
there’s no telling where it starts or how it ends.
Speak to me, why are you building this thick brick wall to defend me when your silence is my greatest fear?
Why let your shoulders bend underneath this burden when my back is sturdy and strong?
Speak to me.
Let me have a look inside these eyes while I’m learning.
Please don’t hide them just because of tears.
Let me send you off to sleep with a “There, there, now stop your turning and tossing.”
Let me know where the hurt is and how to heal.
Spare me? Don’t spare me anything troubling.
Trouble me, disturb me with all your cares and your worries.
Speak to me and let our words build a shelter from the storm.
Lastly, let me know what I can mend.
There’s more, honestly, than my sweet friend, you can see.
Trust is what I’m offering if you trouble me.


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