Practice Makes Practice


by Sandra Bark

The Doors - Practice Makes PracticePeople are always trying to find themselves, as if we are keys that have been misplaced. Like we have fallen behind the couch and if we only look hard enough, we will discover what has been lost.

When our missing selves are not to be found in the living room or the bedroom, at the office or at the corner bar, behind door #1 or door #2, we widen the search. We go farther afield, to Hollywood or Bangkok, to Narnia or Fillory, so that we might find ourselves whole and handsome, in a place where we belong, where we can grow, where we can say, here, here I am, this is it, this is my true self.

A shift in context can be very valuable, of course. Otherwise people would never go off to college or on pilgrimages; we would never become pioneers or pirates or astronauts. Whether we are seeking self-realization, self- definition, or self-actualization, sometimes, a going is part of a becoming. Without the hero’s journey, there would be no hero.

But we don’t always have to buy a ticket in order to set sail.

A few years ago, I lived around the corner from a place we’ll call Mala. I walked by that door a hundred times, and I did not go in. I was too busy. I had things to do, I had places to see, I had selves to find.

Then, one day, between trips and assignments and appointments, I walked in the door. It felt like crawling through a closet and coming out the other side in an enchanted forest. I was a tourist at the beginning; I kept coming back until I felt like a local.

And I realized: we can go to Borneo and India and Guatemala, and we should. But you don’t always have to leave to find yourself if you fear you have been misplaced. Sometimes a necessary journey starts around the corner instead of around the world.

You don’t need a ticket to go to Narnia, and you don’t need a visa to visit Mala. You just need to find the door.

And then you need to walk in.

Sandra Bark is a writer who lives in Brooklyn and practices at Mala. PRACTICE MAKES PRACTICE offers a student’s perspective of the yoga experience, on the mat and off.



About The Mala Yoga Blog

We are a Brooklyn-based studio that focuses on alignment, balance and community. Have a read, try one of our Practice Podcasts, or come in and say "hi" in person!
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3 Responses to Practice Makes Practice

  1. Swami Param says:

    Sadly, Yoga is already “wrecked.” Divorced from the factual Hindu roots, this “yoga” is another example of exploitation and discrimination against Hindus/Hinduism.

    Swami Param
    Classical Yoga Hindu Academy

  2. Pingback: Practice Makes Practice | MALA YOGA

  3. Pingback: Practice Makes Practice | MALA YOGA

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