"Yoga means union; it is waking up to the beauty both within ourselves and realizing the sacredness of all life. And it is the expression of love: loving yourself and others, which frees us from a chaotic mind, negativity and neurosis." What a great quote from a blog entry via Ed and Deb Shapiro (http://www.elephantjournal.com/2011/11/why-your-intellect-is-an-obstacle-in-yoga/).
I wish I could fully experience that union without my thoughts constantly trailing off. Last night my mind wondered to feet ... yes, feet. I even made notes ... yes, notes ... about what intrigues me about feet at yoga. It was as bad as the two college students I saw texting during inversions not too long ago.
The intimacy of feet during yoga class fascinates me. It's such a personal thing to reveal yourself to other adults you don't know by baring your feet, and I believe, your "self" in the process. You can assume a lot about a person from her or his feet. Part of it is the texture. Are they cracked? If they're dry and worn, the people emits the feeling of being tired. If they're quaffed, smooth and look soft, the person is likely to be young and less tired as a result. Taking good care of your tootsies, polishing your nails, that all spells youth to me.
Another issue is normality. Alas, I regress to freaky feet. It's embarrassing to admit I look at the length of women's toes in hopes to see some asymmetry there. And the feet that are totally, exceedingly cracked make me feel sad for the person. I imagine them having corns, bunions, or even (gag) hammer toes.
The last thing is care. It kind of scares me to be beside someone like this, the funky feet person, as if their flakes will slough off and reach my mat or something. What a control freak and germaphobe! I hardly ever walk across that floor without my flip flops because of all the icky stuff there from craft class (and the Y's bugs, ew). It's not as if I have the most perfect, loofa-ed, beautiful feet in the room either. My heels are slightly cracked (I'm working on it) and my toes soak in the lotion every day. Not to mention, my own nails have carried no shiny color since at least September. The yellow tinge of post-summer polishing doesn't count.
Mine have carried me over years and years, not to mention miles and miles. They've not been pampered, with only occasional attention and a half-assed effort with a pumice stone. If it's not sandal season, they are usually worse for the wear. So why am I such a foot snob? Are you kidding -- why am I even thinking about this sort of thing in yoga? At least I'm there, tackling these OCD tics one at a time.