In the past years “yoga fashion” has brought up some popular slogans like “good vibes only.” They show up in t-shirts, postcards and social media. I’ve often wondered what is the message? There’s a bunch of slogans flying around like this, which have quickly become the modern face of the yoga industry.
Is our life “good vibes only”? Is yours?
If we look at social media, the hype, that’s been building up around the yoga industry is very interesting. The ideas and goods that are marketed to us under the name of “yoga” is unlimited. Social media is encouraging us to post messages like “my life is 100% instagram awesome all the time”. However the dilemma is that our reality is often far from the rainbows and unicorns.
Choosing a positive outlook on life is healthy. Like the popular song from the 90’s, “don’t worry, be happy”. However it is much easier said than done and the crystals and sage aren’t always the answer to take away the underlying pain. Life is constant ups and downs for us all. And that’s ok. It’s ok not to have “good vibes only” all the time.
Human kind has been struggling with the issues of the mind since the dawn of civilisation.
The 2000 year old yoga text, Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra states (1.2)
“yogascittavrittinirodahah”, “yoga stops the turbulence of the mind”. The Yoga Sutra is like a torch, showing us light in the dark, giving us direction and a promise of the capacity and power of the yoga practice.
The Bhagavad Gita text 15 talks a fair amount about karsati, “struggle for existence”, “grappling hard” – the conditioned soul is bound up by the false ego. Our whole life span is constant practice towards, what is both the definition and the goal of yoga: “One should know that this, the disconnecting from the connection to suffering, is what is called yoga. Yoga is to be practiced with firm resolve and with an undiscouraged mind.” (BG 6.23)
So rather than wearing a a t-shirt that says “good vibes only”, I’d be more comfortable having one that states “learning to surf the waves.” We never know when a big one might pass through.
With love, Sanna x