Stay Young, Move Your Body!
Move your body! It is our nature to move with the rhythm of our souls. Active minds and calm spirits are healthy, flowing bodies.
Observe children, they move so effortlessly; their young bodies lithe and agile, anxious to explore the world. Children run and play without conscious effort. They do it because it is their nature to do so and they love the way it feels.
Animals instinctively know to stretch their bodies after resting and never rush into quick movement unless survival dictates the necessity for it.
As we get older we forget to have fun and discover the world we live in. We let our rigid thoughts manifest into rigid unmoving and painful bodies. Our American culture, ignorantly reveres youth, even glorifies it. Senescence (aging) is dreaded and the elderly commonly become drug addicted cast offs of a superficial society.
In regions of Asia and India the elderly are thriving, often working until the day they die. Their belief systems around aging support a population that is proud, (yet not arrogant) optimistic and productive. Elders are respected for their wisdom and longevity. They have passion for life because they have not been programmed to dream the impossible, thereby feeling a failure and “believing” they will never reach their goals.
Furthermore, the elderly are not plagued with “old-age” diseases so common to our western culture. Of course diet plays a large part in their good health but it is their minds that dictate their choices that sustain that good health. It is evident then, that one’s values and beliefs determine how they will age and also the amount of activity they will pursue as an older adult. Your energy level will obviously determine what types of physical activity most appeal to you. And your energy level will vary from day to day according to your diet and lifestyle. That is why it is imperative you feed yourself wholesome foods. If you are eating foods that are too rich, mostly cooked and devoid of nutrition it is unlikely you will have the energy (fuel) to exercise and to take care of yourself properly.
Whether I am walking, gardening or reading, I perform my activities quickly. I equate myself to a quarter horse; fast to the finish with energy coming in bursts. I need brief moments of quiet time to recharge my energy throughout my day and when I do “the work” my spirit and body are content.
I discovered yoga at the age of 18 and it was a godsend for me. There were times in my life when I did not practice and I suffered as a result of my ego’s choices. Yoga is so profoundly different from other activities in that virtually anyone can do it, and most importantly, it has a balancing affect on the whole person: mind, body and soul.
I also practice T’ai Chi Chih, a simple modified form of T’ai Chi. T'ai Chi and yoga have been practiced for over several millennia and have been proven to be very beneficial.
Walking, swimming, and dancing are other activities that I enjoy and ones I encourage you to try. The mind clearing euphoria and life-giving oxygen they provide are not only relaxing but refreshing. They also reduce tension from excess energy stores and keep the body fit. First and foremost, listen to your body. It knows what you need and want. Discover what you enjoy and what works for you.
As you learn to love and awaken to your divine self you will take better care of the house of your spirit.
As a wise soul once said,
“It is not a matter of faith; it is a matter of practice.”
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