Now That is a Yoga Pose!
Understanding diabetes via inquiry of
fundamental yoga principles
My name is Michael.
I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at the age of 14 in November of 1976.
Started practicing yoga in 1999.
Went to a 200 hour yoga teacher certification course in 2006.
Have attended 150 hours of advanced courses toward what is called the 500 hour certification.
Certified through The Kripalu Yoga Center in Massachusetts.
Over 5000 teaching hours.
Registered as a certified teacher (E-RYT) with the Yoga Alliance.
I have discovered a path of inquiry that can yield positive results for those of us affected by this condition. I believe this path of inquiry to be applicable and valuable to anyone afflicted by the dis-ease itself or anyone who is a parent, spouse, sibling, friend, co-worker, coach, teacher or medical professional.
Why would you want me as your guide?
- I have lived and kept my physical body alive and health while living with Type 1 diabetes (T1D) for 47 years
- I have never needed glucagon to come back from a low.
- Never been in DKA from being high.
- Never had to go to the hospital because of diabetes except when I was diagnosed. I got discharged on Thanksgiving Day. Ha.
- No complications. Maybe a slight bit of OCD and I may have a slight case of a new Personality Disorder called Adjustment Disorder.
- I know yoga and I am constantly studying, teaching and practicing it. It is a very comprehensive “map” of the nature of everything.
- Most of my career has been in the areas of systems and procedures design, quality assurance and hiring and training sales people, customer service reps and managers…
- I can point out signs and tracks along the path. What I mean by this is that I have discovered specific paths of inquiry that are fundamental to what we need to do to survive and maintain an acceptable level of health and balance.
- I know what are the black diamond paths and which ones are the bunny runs.
- I believe we are headed toward a cure and the yogic perspective is what is needed and can speed the process and keep others healthy until we get there.
We learn through metaphor. Everything we understand or could possibly understand is only possible because there is something else to compare it to. The law of duality; the law of polarity; “For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.”
The fact is, in the environment we find ourselves in, anything that arises does so in relation to something else.
Diabetes and Yoga. We are going to hold these two “things” side by side and see how they relate to each other. We are going to “metaphor” diabetes with yoga. When we do this, connections will be created between the two “systems”, “maps,” “challenges” “conditions” “practices”, “disciplines”, “poses.”
Think about how the brain works.
It makes neural connections that create pathways. Pathways that receive knowledge, learn and hone skills and cultivate new and different mind constructs, cognitive maps, mental paradigms.
One of the most important writings in yoga is entitled, “The Yoga Sutras” by Patanjali. Written before 400 B.C. it is a compilation of 196 sutras (aphorisms) on the theory and practice of yoga. The very first sutra reads….
“Now the inquiry of yoga.”
A state of inquiry; being the witness; being the observer is the state we aspire to when practicing yoga.
Can a connection be made with diabetes here? I believe yes. In fact, when dealing with diabetes and everything one must account for in the management of whatever system one is using to try and achieve safe blood sugar levels, I have found that a state of inquiry is, usually, the best.
This path of inquiry is divided into three stages or phases:
Phase 1: Proper Alignment. (here a short on-line assessment and/or a short video that discusses proper alignment principles and how that applies to the foundational alignment in dealing with diabetes. Need something that is really concise and to the point. I have written so much I believe I got it. Got to find a way to offer this free in exchange for them filling out assessment with contact info. Could provide back an assessment summary with budget analysis..) From the perspective of the diabetes side…..it is proper alignment with the goal of achieving safe control.
Phase 2: Finding and Exploring Your “Edge” (I see this as a short on-line interactive teaching. 5 modules dealing with moving into the posture and knowing where to back off and where to push forward. Introduce the concept of flying the plane here. Could be a manual instead. I will write it as a manual first. Again, I got it all written. The newest insight I have is about the basal rate being most important. In Phase 1 basal rate is set. In Phase 2 we begin to explore testing and adjusting basal rate.
Phase 3: Expanding Your Edge and Experiencing Authentic Free Expression. (Here is the intensive retreat concept where we go at it everyday. Requires completion of Phase 2 training. Get sponsors from diabetes supply companies. If someone takes the inquiry to level 3 they can experience pushing beyond the edge. Cut basal rate by 50%. I’ve done this at a sustained level twice; Once when I was working out like a fiend and the second time was when I went to Vipassana 10 day retreat.