You see, I lead a double life. I'm talking Hannah Montana fashion, with Miley Cyrus spirituality. I am a black coffee lover and inquisitive about the properties of tumeric tea and how it may balance my dosha. I am a ~Walk Barefoot in the Woods~ as much as I am a Vegas Pool Party in Wedges. I want to be a yoga-juice-meditate-yorkie person as much as I live the budlight-jeans-applebees life. But Kaylee, you may ask, how do you practice Aparigraha if you value material items?
To which I would say: wow, I am feeling called out.
Aparigraha is the last Yama in Patanjali's Eight Limbs of Yoga. Patanjali set forth an eightfold path (ashtanga) as basic guidelines on how to live a meaningful and purposeful life. The first items are the Yamas which are social guidelines: Aparigraha being translated to mean: non-attachment, non-greed, non-possessiveness. [This infographic does not relinquish me of the responsibility to share more about the 8 limbs and the Yamas in the future - but I no longer like to make promises about blog posts because we've seen where that ends up.]
TLDR: Aparigraha is a yoga way to say "non-attachment."
So, back to your question: how do I practice Aparigraha when I covet Chanel bags? In truth, I do not. If I were to follow the path to the fullest potential, I would relinquish worldly possessions. I'd probably live in the Himalayas (if they'd let me). I would disconnect from trends, designers and celebrity, social media and influence (this is starting to sound not so bad). But that's not me; and why must we be one thing? Why are we made to feel 2D when the world is so dynamic? Why are we made to feel phoney if we are not fully immersed in one personality type?
How about we give one another grace & practice non-judgement. Allow yourself to indulge in the Kardashians but not gorge on it. Love your purses or shoes but know, ultimately, shoes do not a woman make. Let go when you're ready.
This is all to say, walk your path in whatever way feels right to you. Treasure what you have and donate what does not serve you.
Follow along at @upsidedown_physio on instagram and @DPT_Klee on twitter.
Kaylee, PT, DPT
Kaylee is a Doctor of Physical Therapy based in the Bay Area of California. She received her degree in 2020 from The University of Miami and is currently practicing in Sub-Acute Rehab. Kaylee is passionate about all things yoga, neuro-rehab, and limb loss and limb difference rehabilitation demonstrated through practice, student education and advocacy.
Dosha - (in Ayurvedic medicine) each of three energies believed to circulate in the body and govern physiological activity.
Aparigraha - Aparigraha often translates to 'non-greed', 'non-possessiveness', and 'non-attachment'. It is one of the 5 Yamas from Patanjalis 8 limbs of yoga.
Yama - A yama is a duty or observance recommended by yogic philosophy and teaching as part of the eight-limbed path of yoga.
Eight Limbs of Yoga - In Patanjali’sYoga Sutra, the eightfold path is called ashtanga, which literally means “eight limbs” (ashta=eight, anga=limb). These eight steps basically act as guidelines on how to live a meaningful and purposeful life. They serve as a prescription for moral and ethical conduct and self-discipline; they direct attention toward one’s health; and they help us to acknowledge the spiritual aspects of our nature.