A week of practicing yoga and contemplation at Present Moment Retreat, in Mexico, led me to today’s reflection in which I considered how divorce mediation and yoga are amazingly similar. Why wouldn’t they be similar? Both improve substantially—and even require—the practitioner to stay in the “present moment.” Yoga and divorce mediation have both been around for centuries and have many different models, but there seem to be many similarities.

It is no wonder I am drawn to both.

According to Wikipedia “yoga” comes from the Sanskrit word ‘yuj’ meaning to yoke, join, or unite. Today I learned that yoga actually means “concentration” which ultimately leads to unity and liberation. This tidbit was told to me by Ryan Kelly, one of the exceptional yoga instructors on staff at Present Moment Retreat. (Ryan also managed to release an extremely painful knot from my lower back area—but this is another story!).

Eight days of yoga. Five different practice instructors. Never the same practice. All about concentration and unity. How is it similar to divorce mediation? To name a few:

Yoga practice depends  on:

  • Instructor and participants
  • Needs of the participants
  • Emotional state of the participants
  • Goals of the participants
  • Instructor’s intuitive ability to sense what process best serves the participants that day
  • Time of day
  • Training background of the instructor
  • Knowledge and ability of the participants and the instructor

Divorce mediation depends on:

  • Divorce Mediator
  • Clients
  • Needs of the clients
  • Emotional state of the clients
  • Goals of the clients
  • Mediator’s intuitive ability to sense what process best serves the clients that day
  • Time of day
  • Training background of the mediator
  • Knowledge and ability of the mediator as well as the clients

Many other similarities could be listed. Both practices take concentration and effort, leading to unity/agreement—and ultimately liberation! I invite you to let me know your thoughts and join in the discussion. In the meantime, I’m going to take my last restorative yoga class and be in the present moment!

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