On being “Brute”

On being “Brute”

Hey, folks.  I know, I know – I have totally fallen behind on this whole blog thing!  It is a lot harder than I thought to think some thoughts and then organize them into simple words that others can read and understand.  The other bloggers in my life, like my introspective and eloquent wife, #xfitinyogi and an unlikely buddy to a lesbian yogi like myself, Vonmunchausen, make it all look so easy!

And, actually, the thinking of the thoughts part is really easy – the hard part is that it usually happens when I am shut up in a quiet room working on a very still and probably sleeping client (which relaxes me too and is hence why the thoughts flood in) or while I am driving listening to some of my favorite podcasts and then I have no way to record my thoughts because my phone is plugged into the car.  My most inspired thoughts unfortunately come to me when I have no way to record them and then when I go to sit down t0 record them, they are poof – gone!

So, I pout and I give up and then I get smacked up side the head by these creative forces around me who say, “just fucking write – write something – anything!”   A writing professional and young, spirited visionary in my life, Tara, gave me a swift kick in the ass the other day when I was lamenting about how psychologically stunted I am when it comes to sharing my thoughts with the world through the written word and that I tend to write in short phrases – single worded thoughts – and pictures like a child.  She ever so casually said, “Do it like that then! Why not?  It is you are and how you speak!”  Keep it simple, stupid!  Duh.

I’ve recently pulled my shit *almost* together to begin what my very first marketing mentor, guru of go-getting, Amber,  has been on me for years to do – create and cultivate a brand.  I think I did?!  Brute Yogi!  And, now that it is out there, I am getting a lot of questions like, “oh are you teaching yoga at Brute Strength Gym now?” “Are you the in-gym yoga teacher for them?” “Isn’t being ‘brute’ a bad thing?”  “Why would you want to be called a ‘brute’ and a ‘yogi?”  “So, you aren’t called ‘The Space Above’ anymore?”

Look, here’s the deal: I’ve been an athlete most of my life, a yogi 18 years, and have recently joined an eclectic community of warm and fuzzy (almost always grunting while covered in chalk) brutes at Brute Strength Gym.   In the 8 years I’ve been a member of the brotherhood of  Crossfit, I began to see my unique perspective being a yogi and a massage therapist and yet still feeling right at home with the muscle heads and the six packs.  Within the past several years, I’ve lost all romantic notions about yoga (not unlike this woman’s story and experience with her break-up with yoga )and realized that the best way for me to practice yoga is to share it the way I use it as a life style paradigm that anyone can integrate in their life and their flow – mala beads, flowy white pants, and references to blossoming your buttocks not necessary!

The term “Brute Yogi” just popped in my head one day and it felt right – I owe a lot to trusting my intuition .   I’ve done and am still doing my work on the yogic path, it just doesn’t quite look the way that you expect it to.  (I am saving that for another blog post – my intentions in sharing Brute Yoga.)  For now, I just want to bring the two worlds together – these two worlds that seem too opposed or that there isn’t any way to know both parts of oneself.

Anyone can benefit from this advice, right? “Good distraction frees us from emotional pain. Bad distraction gives you a mouth full of whizz.”

What is a Yogi?
/yōgē/
 A yogi is a person who practices yoga and seeks to unite the physical body and the spiritual being. This is an individual who chooses to pursue the union of individual consciousness with the ultimate consciousness of the Divine.  Through mindfulness, self-study,  a practice of controlling the breath, and understanding the physical body, a yogi learns self-control and ultimate takes ownership of their experiences and their state of mind.
Now, who wouldn’t want this and why couldn’t anyone make this their practice?  Why couldn’t a dirty, sweaty ditch digger who uses the F word to express his passion and sees beauty in his quiet moments alone on his porch with a beer learn to practice mindfulness and be given an opportunity to find some relief in his physical body without the threat of doing asana that his large, weary biceps and formidably bulky thighs will NEVER EVER be capable of mimicking – even if he keeps practicing, “all will [not] be coming” (it is a pet peeve of mine to hear a teacher quote one of the fathers of the physical yoga practice, Sri Pattabhi Jois, “practice and all is coming” to students in their slack-jawed, dismissive, condescending yoga voice instead of using thoughtful discrimination to recognize where their students are in there hard-working everyday bodies and then taking the extra step to find ways these “normal” bodies can experience yoga.)  Deep breath…

What is a Brute?
/bro͞ot/

A wholly instinctive being who tends towards being very strong or forceful and is capable of generating a great amount of force when necessary. **On the other hand, there are also these definitions: A savagely violent person or animal.  A person who is offensive and rude.

There is a time and place for tenacity – for being a brute when undaunting force is necessary to move heavy things or to have an indomitable will in furthering a cause or to prevent a boundary from being crossed.  So, why not be a Brute Yogi?  Why not be gritty and graceful – courageous and compassionate – bold and sympathetic – an even-tempered beastly badass?  Why the fuck not?  Namaste, bitches!  Feel love and feel your power!

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