Ian Fox was interviewed recently for a well known magazine and asked some very poignant questions about combining spiritual fitness with physical fitness. Here they are for you to enjoy.
* Why is it important to stay spiritually fit, as well as physically fit?
If you do not maintain the balance between your mind, your body and your spirit you feel hollow and at some or many levels suffer. This is felt as an emotion of inadequacy, un-comfortability or feeling as though you are not enough or combinations of all of these?
There has to be harmony between the Yin and Yang, therefore the physical must be developed in relation to the spiritual. You see this imbalance all the time in those who seemingly have a great body and all they want and yet still feel that something is missing. You will never achieve anything in the future because you can only be happy in the present. The future is nothing more than a distant form of this moment and whilst you project your thoughts into the future you miss the aliveness that is around you right now.
* How do yoga and meditation help boost spiritual fitness – and how have they helped you personally?
Because they help you lose the grip the ego holds over you and assist you in the raising of your consciousness and self-awareness. Even when people work out they project their minds to other places. Everything about the training environment is designed to make you disconnect from what you are doing. The Plasma TV, the loud music, the noisy fitness instructor. All take you away from being at one with your body and getting to know and feel comfortable with it. There is a deep connection between physical exercise and your spirituality.
The problem with some modern forms of exercise is although they call themselves ‘Mind & Body’ fitness they have little to do with the mind other than stimulating the ephemeral ‘feel good factor’ and massaging the instructor’s ego.
On a personal level I have experienced the incredible deep inner peace that comes from relinquishing the egos desires and living in the all present now. Stripping away at the layers of identity and the ‘mindufactured’ life. Like the Samurai who found Satori, which means a flash of enlightenment, my goal is not to chase enlightenment but to create it within. Be still and the wings of the Butterfly may land upon you. Chase it and it fly’s away.
* Do you have any tips on how to be more spiritual in your day-to-day life?
Yes, stop chasing the future and live in the all present now. You can have goals but if the goal takes you away from beauty of the present then the goal is most probably ego created and of the illusionary craving and yearning sort. When you exercise become totally self aware of your body and how your mind interacts. Do not label or judge how you look but accept the fact that perhaps you are not perfect.
Avoid the traps of society that says you have to be this or that to be accepted. Accepted by whom?
Connect your mind and body and feel the aliveness of the exercise and enjoy a total and powerful feeling of presence inside the body. You are alive and feel great no matter who you are, how you look, where you live or what you do. In that instant life has taken on a new meaning and you have just found your own Satori.
By Ian Fox © copyright