You are part way through a session, and getting into the really challenging pose. You’re doing something particularly difficult (maybe a tricky inversion or an arm balance or both), and the teacher, in the spirit of encouragement, tells you not to fret if you can’t do the pose because, “It’s only yoga.”
It’s only yoga. I am pretty sure that I know what teachers mean when they say that. They mean that it’s only a physical exercise; it’s only asana; it’s only a practice. But, what they often say is, “It’s only yoga.” And every time I hear it, I have the same internal monologue.
Yoga is union. Yoga is the connection between (self and divine, me and you, this and that, body and spirit). Yoga is everything. What we are practicing is getting out of our own way so that we can see this connection that is already there.
So maybe, more appropriately, we should say, “It’s all yoga.”