Now we begin the practice of yoga.
Atha yoga nushasanam —Yoga Sutra 1.1
Now just get into the practice.
Atha means now with the intention to grab our attention. The word now implies that whatever else we may have done prior to this study, now we begin and this study is not to put off any longer. Now we are going to learn yoga with discipline (nushasanam). Discipline : self management being respectful. Whatever happens to our physical body, good or bad, is our responsibility. Real yoga begins when the class finishes and has to be applied out in life. This discipline is very important. Patanjali informs us that this study is not meant to be done in isolation. Any community with the ability to exchange ideas freely make us evolve faster than being by ourselves (self-centered).
It is a good exercise to write down what we want to develop in our life and with discipline and perseverance work towards our stability, comfortably and joyfully but with awareness. Awareness about the body, mind, senses and emotions. How we perform or sit is all up to us. Our lives depend on how we breathe. The shorter the breath, the shorter our life. The longer the breath the longer our life. Eating is also a practice. It is a kind of devotion. We need to eliminate bad habits if we want to support ourselves to respond to good habits.