Here in the United States, we are about to celebrate Independence Day a.k.a. the 4th of July. The day commemorates the country’s independence. While the country’s move to independence came out of specific political issues of the day, a lot of issues came back to broader issues of power and governance. Various forms of bodily movement also focus on power, but of a different variety.
Physically, a lot of power is going to come out of core areas. This especially includes the abdominal areas and the pelvic midline. One wants to essentially focus on the core foundation in order to expand bodily strength. One would do this by focusing on those exercises / asanas that would focus on strengthening core areas, utilizing, perhaps, the body itself to work on building up those core areas, utilizing those areas to build strength in other areas as well. This sort of training is specifically focused on these areas to build up lean muscle and improve overall functioning.
Mental strength is also very important to attaining a fitness of the whole body. To hold power over the body, one has to believe that one can control it. Before I started with a serious exercise program, I used to doubt that I could do certain things. Sure, I might even get in some exercise, but perhaps the mental strength was displaced. I saw limitations to my body that seemed to go beyond my limits. At some point, though, we have to ask ourselves whether these beliefs are actually true or whether they are just mental blocks that we set up in our own minds to suggest failure. Now, that does not mean that everyone will be able to do everything – at least not all at once – but rather that we can set up modifications and training to meet our goals. We are not necessarily bound by the doubts that others have of us – or we have our own selves – if we can get past those mental hang-ups and find a functional way of carrying about a particular task.
Mental power also means utilizing one’s own resources, whenever possible, to do self-care and to be able to make a positive difference in the lives of others. To be able to self-function at an appropriate level, whatever that may mean to a person’s development, situation, or ability level gives one power because of the self-autonomy component. Now, that does not necessarily mean that we are all “lone wolves” on the journey. To the contrary, we are surrounded by people that are necessary to our success – or who can pull us down. However, forging self-identity and becoming as self-sufficient as one can in one’s situation is important to having and maintaining the power to become one’s best self.
Finally, there is spiritual power. That concept means a lot of things to a lot of different people. However, there usually would be recognition that there are things bigger than oneself implicit in that definition. In other words, we are aware that we are not completely alone on the journey. Becoming spiritually powerful is to gradually come into awareness of this concept and to be able to take the journey necessary to negotiate just what that means in one’s individual life.
Building up power of various types is one positive aspect of physical fitness and/or bodily movement. However, one needs to define this power, utilize it appropriately, and continue to maintain the power. What sorts of ways do you maintain power in your physical, mental, and spiritual states?