He was supposed to be here. Last year when we were planning this Yoga Retreat along with friends, I asked him if he would like to come and to my utter delight he said yes. His room had been booked and the deposit had been paid. He is conspicuous by his absence.
Today was an unexpectedly cold, windy and rainy day. After much deliberation, we had an afternoon yoga session. The teacher chanted a Sanskrit prayer that asked for illumination of our minds like the sun illuminates the earth. She said that although we cannot see the sun it is there and we cannot see the mountains but they are there.
As I sat with my eyes closed paying attention to the relaxation of the shoulders, the straightness of the spine and the rhythm of the breath, I caught glimpses of my centre. With listening, with attention, came clarity – slowly, slowly. I briefly touched that spot from which I could expand into the ground and into space.
‘Shava’ means a corpse. ‘Asana’ is a posture. Combining the two makes ‘Shavasana’ – lying like a corpse. At the end of the practice, lying in shavasana, the superfluous leaves the body and disappears into the ground. Everything rests – my brain, heart, lungs, bones, eyes, skin. Everything.
All goes quiet.
I know that even though I cannot see him, he is here.