How I became a vegetarian with Asanas, Ahimsa and Satya.

After a yoga class

At the beginning yoga and daily life were two separate things for me.

After practicing a yoga asanas class, I felt the need to eat a lot. My mind pattern was “you have worked out a lot, now you need to eat” (eg Aparigraha I guess).

Class after class, during asanas, I started to listen to my body more carefully. It was hurting here and there, it was tense in muscles that I did not even know before. Then I realised that my body did not actually need a lot of food and meat after an asana class. My mind was making that up, maybe out of fear. I still continued eating meat after class, but out of mere habit. I could see it but could not refrain from doing it straight away. My mind was craving for food. The craving was intense and well established in my behaviour. Slowly it calmed down … and came back. The principle of “reward after the physical effort” was still strong. Little by little, I realised that I just needed water, fruits and vegetables after a yoga class and not meat as I used to have. My mind got reassured little by little, it calmed down and accepted the fact that not eating meat after a yoga class was sustainable.

 

Before a yoga class

I also felt that eating meat before a yoga class (two hours before) made my practice a little bit more difficult. I felt like an idiot trying hard to expel the toxins out of my body, when I did not need to put them in my body in the first place. I finally gave up eating meat before a class.

Thus, I did not eat meat before or after a class. Since I had class everyday, this how I finally gave up eating meat.

 

Vegetarian, at last

But I was still eating fish or seafood. Then I thought that it was a bit hypocrite. After all, fish and clams etc, suffer the same way when we kill them for our lunch. The honesty, Satya, that  I was trying to practice on the mat by listening to my body in an honest and truthful way, I had to practice it in daily life: I could not ignore the suffering of these animals any more (Ahimsa). It is not because I could not hear their cries that they were not suffering. Yoga is truth. So I should not lie to myself and pretend that they don’t suffer when they get killed.

This is how I became a vegetarian.

Huy