Updated: Feb 3, 2022
What is wholeness? For me it means integration. The dictionary definition of integration is 'to make whole by bringing all parts together', 'unification'. This also happens to be one of the definitions of yoga; 'to yoke' or 'to join'. How we do this in our asana practice is to layer each movement with breath. Conscious breath creates integration, linking us with body and mind and when we join these three energies it provides us with a steadiness, an evenness and a groundedness that wasn’t present before. Integration occurs, re-connecting us with our self. As our practice progresses, we start to become more aware of these energies, more observant of the changes in the body, in the emotions, in the mind. Through conscious breath paired with movement, we observe its effects in making us feel more whole. The practice becomes is becoming a part of you, you can start to feel the process of integration. “Life is a process, the inner as well as the outer; the outer affects the inner, but the inner invariably overcomes the outer. Life is a total process whose beauty is to be discovered only in its integration.” ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti Krishnamurti said that understanding our process does not come through thought, it comes from the space between the thoughts, the space where there are no words or thoughts formed in our mind. That sweet little void that I often talk about in class between the inhale and the exhale. He said that we must establish regular moments of silent space for ourselves to allow these understandings to take place. If you are one who avoids stillness, moving from one thing to the next quick and impatient and you don’t allow space for these moments of understanding to arise, you miss the integration. You miss this coming together of the whole.
Krishnamurti also said that in order to integrate there needs to be some sort of a struggle. He said that all existence is a struggle and without it there would only be weakness. That if we did not have this sense of struggle, then we would not be forced to grow. He said “to struggle is as essential as breathing." So to be whole means we encounter struggle and our journey is not meant to be perfect. This struggle, this discontentment is a means of making you strive for something else, something higher. It supports you in making necessary change, in making an effort, tapas, a willingness to reach out and strip the mind of its old ideals, comparisons, attachments and judgements. The struggle is what leads us to integration and transformation, to a place where we can resolve our inner conflict. Then the struggle to become eventually drops away and there is only the whole and the complete.