I wouldn’t call myself a controlling person, but I do have a heightened need to guard myself at all times. I sometimes wonder if I clawed through my skin, would my nails eventually scrape the metal?

I can feel the weight of the armor some days as it travels up my chest, the compression of it-where in this life is there the opportunity to remove it? A safe space to put the burden down? Does such a place exist?

Sometimes when I feel successful scratching off a layer, a new one emerges and I grow despondent. If ego creates these layers and yoga removes them, why do I keep forming more?

Because yoga doesn’t eradicate them in one sitting. Yoga creates the awareness of their substance. First, there is a layer, and we only become aware of this layer because it has a beginning and an end (two sided). What makes it two-sided is another layer. Yoga brings the layers to light.

No one said removing the layers is the goal. Carte blanche didn’t get me here and to go back to carte blanche will eventually return me to the same spot. So now learning to recognize the layers and then become able to move between them with ease. The practice of yoga not only illuminates the layers, but is the process of learning to moved easily between them.

Each layer poses a different combination of what it takes to function easily around the layers. And as life progresses, more experiences add more layers. Some days practice will be like moving between layers like you’re walking between sheets on a clothesline on a sunny day. Other days will be like moving through a hall of mirrors.

And I wonder if those harder layers are not new, but have hardened over time from neglect.