When we say that something “moves” us, we are pointing to a shift in our state of being. We have changed opinions, or actions, or emotions; perhaps there has even been transformation.

The principle of movement, according to Yoga and Ayurveda, is called prana, the Sanskrit word that is described as “life force” or “cosmic energy.”

If something moves, it is moved by prana, which has five vayus (winds) that describe the five directions of movement. The seat of prana is the heart, it quite literally moves us by providing oxygen to all of our cells, but it is also where we feel emotion, a word that describes what happens when we feel: motion.

Today is International Worker’s Day. For many around the world this will be a day of protest, propelled by a desire for change. To start my May Day this morning, I decided to sit in a quiet place, close my eyes, and deeply consider what moves me. Here is what I came up with:
  • someone who is truly present
  • unnecessary suffering
  • being part of a community
  • information that challenges my beliefs
  • moving my body
  • experiencing vulnerability – of myself, of another
  • art that makes connections and asks deep questions
  • practices that help me to retrain outdated thought patterns – the 8 limbs of yoga, mantra repetition, setting intention, yoga nidra, nonviolent communication
To make lasting change in our world we also need to understand what moves other people. What’s on your list? Respond to the link to this newsletter on Facebook (May 1) or use the hashtag #whatmovesme. I look forward to reading your responses!

Neighborhood Studios