It is often difficult to come by people who are living the truth; the creation of social media and the anonymity of online profiles has allowed us to hide behind our screens as keyboard warriors. With platforms such as Instagram and Facebook, the true meaning of yoga has been lost in translation and created a mass of ‘yoga models’. As an avid user of social media, I was once influenced by the shapes and breathtaking photos of people in yoga poses. In fact, these photos shaped my idea of yoga and gave me the impression that I was not flexible or strong enough to practice yoga.
The yogic practice of Satya was never once mentioned on these platforms, nor was the 8 limbs of yoga ever touched upon. It was only when I decided to go unplugged and brought myself outdoors to interact with yoga practitioners that I realized the meaning of truthfulness. The people that I’ve met through yoga events were really sincere and humble; completely different from the ‘yoga models’ that I used to see online. These people had nice vibes and did not focus on the aesthetic appeals of yoga, but rather, focused on the spiritual side of yoga. It was through them that I realized how blinded I was by the physical aesthetics, and had failed to see the story behind the photos.
Not everything online is perfect and sometimes people take extreme measures to hide and disguise it. Our tendency to seek perfection and positive news has made us oblivious to the uglier side of things. It was tiring to only see filtered good news, which was why I removed myself online and tried to align my ‘online self’ with my true ‘offline self’. I personally believe that happiness will come only when we are able to live truthfully and be honest with our true selves both online and offline. I’m still on my journey to truthfulness; though it is difficult, it has definitely made me more grounded as a person.
200hr YTT January 2017