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Sometimes, during a posture, we remind you that if, say, you don't focus on opening the hips, then perhaps your knee and back may overcompensate for it. This happens because certain parts of our bodies have not been engaged and opened enough. Their inherent purpose has not been revealed to us, in the fullest extent. But the body has a tendency to make up for it in other ways, without consulting us. So, the back or the knee will overcompensate for the tightness of the hip. What happens next? The back/knee undergoes injuries and pain. And we examine the back/knee, missing the contribution of the hip.

Being mindful during yoga can open us up to parts of our spirit that also may be overcompensating. Here is a simple example. Take the case of love. Many times, when we love someone, we go out of the way to do things for them and make them happy. When they don’t become happy, we blame ourselves. What may be happening here is that our “outward loving” is overcompensating for the lack of engagement of our “inward loving”. Having never engaged our “inward loving” properly (our self-love) we unconsciously make the “outward loving” overcompensate (our role in the relationship). In other words, we expect the ‘outward loving’ to do the work of the ‘inward loving’. But there is no substitute for ‘inward loving’. Just like there is no substitute for what the hip or the shoulder or the knee can potentially do. Let’s become mindful of the parts of our bodies – and spirits – that may be overcompensating. And let’s engage them, to rediscover their inherent purpose.

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