I am a yogi. I am also a human.
I love unconditionally. I have times I hate and get frustrated.
I smile and I laugh. I frown and I cry.
I dance with joy. I throw mini tantrums.
I say kind words to myself and my loved ones. I say not so kind things to myself and my loved ones or I say nothing.
I’ve done many selfless acts in my life; I’ve saved lives; I’ve bettered lives; I’ve given my life’s work to someone else’s dream. I’ve done many selfish things in my life; hurt people; made their lives (temporarily, at least) worse for my actions. I now have no work.
I have done things and let people go because my intuition told me to and not regretted it. I have done things and let people go because my intuition told me to, but I did it in a way I regret.
I have hundreds of achievements to my name. I have hundreds of mistakes to my name.
I try to learn from my mistakes. I sometimes repeat my mistakes.
I have lived, inside and out. I have died, inside and out (lupus feels anyone?!). I have loved with all my heart, and I have lost. Sometimes through nature. Sometimes through choice. I once resented the losing part. Now I choose to be grateful for the love I experienced.
Does the above make me any less of a yogi?
I am young, not even 30. I accept I am naive and, relatively speaking, spiritually and emotion immature. I have hard lessons to learn and a lot to figure out in life. Maybe one day I can be that yogi that hits every yama and niyama every day, uses asana and pranayama and all the other limbs it takes to become a “true yogi”. And yet… I am human. You are human. The most dedicated yogi on the planet is human. We cannot expect to rid ourselves of our humanness and associated complexities because we want to be a yogi.
In 5 years of learning, there is one thing which to me describes what a yogi is. That is intention. If you intend to embody yoga as far as you are able and happy to, it does not matter if you stray from the eight limbs.
If you are a yogi, you will come back with the intention to try again. To learn more. To enlighten your soul.
How each person begins their journey as a yogi makes them no less of a yogi – but no yogi can stop being human.