In Episode 8 of Yoga for Writing, we discuss the yogic philosophy of Bramacharya. Writers have done a lot historically to glorify drug and alcohol addiction, but at what cost? The stereotype of the romantic drunk author pounding away at his keyboard in Key West has created the false idea that we can call upon the muse with the use of mind-altering substances. The yogic yama, Bramacharya, asks for moderation in all things. Miserable writers may want to consider what kind of activities they are over-indulging in and how they might be stealing from their creativity.
What is the difference between using the term “writing process” and “writing practice”? In yoga, we commonly use the term practice to describe all the ways in which yoga enters into our lives. Yet, in writing, the term practice is relegated to grade school homework. Using this one simple word can make all the difference in the way we perceive our daily writing life. Find out why in Episode 7 of Writing for Yoga.
In Episode 6 of Yoga for Writing: a podcast for miserable writers, I look at how the yama, or restraint, of Asteya, which translates to non-stealing, relates to the writing life. I’m not talking about plagiarism either. Sometimes, following our dream, or the deep desire to achieve something, can make us unhappy unless we recognize that we can’t steal our dream from ourselves or anyone else. What the heck am I talking about? Listen to Episode 6 to find out. Also, if you like it, please leave a review on iTunes; this leads other people to this podcast who might find it useful.
In Episode 5 of Yoga for Writing I discuss what I mean by “being in the moment.” It’s a phrase that is often tossed around in yoga and spiritual communities, but what does it actually mean? And what the heck does it have to do with writing? More so, how can it help us be less miserable in our writing life?
In Episode 4 of Yoga for Writing: a podcast for miserable writers, we discuss Satya. One of five yamas, or yoga ethics, Satya addresses the idea of honesty, authenticity and following your true path. Are you a closet writer? Who are we really harming when we tell little white lies? What’s holding us back from being truthful in our writing? Be honest with yourself, is it time for a change?
In yoga, we use the body as a means of accessing and shifting our state of mind. Writers can take a tip from yogis. How does listening to our bodies help us better engage with our work? What is the mind and body connection in writing? How can we use the body to overcome our literary struggles? What is writersasana? Learn all this and more on Episode 3: Writing in the Body.
Yoga poses are only one part of the yoga lifestyle. Actually, yoga has 8 different limbs. The first two limbs include the yamas and niyamas, which are the ethical precepts of yoga. In this episode, we discuss the first yama, ahimsa, which means non-violence. Violence comes in many forms. In the case of writers, I’m referring to the self-inflicted kind.
This is not a series on how to write or how to do yoga. I will not give you tips on character development, plot structure or imagery. Those are all things you can find elsewhere. And aside from some tips, I am not going to teach you how to practice yoga, only guide you through some fundamental ideas of yoga and a few asanas. But you can also find that information elsewhere. Instead, my hope is to show how the ancient philosophies of yoga, as taught through various texts all rooted in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, can offer writers a sense of ease and harmony in their writing process and writing life.