What if you came away from your yoga class or home practice, not only feeling energized but with a deeper trust in who and why you are? What if you could tune into and follow an inner guidance system that aligns you with purpose, whereby you follow your passion and you live from the everlasting Presence of Love?

This is the power of exploring themes within your yoga class either within a group dynamic or alone at home.

Let me begin this adventure with what I consider to be the best theme for a yoga class or for an individual practicing at home. This is the theme of “Learning to trust the Universe.”

I will explore trust as a theme for yoga class using the medium of mystical poetry, heart song, and mythological storytelling together with related quotes and lyrics. This is the language of the heart that you combine with the practice of embodiment.

Why Trust the Universe?

yoga themes and trust

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You are here for one primary reason.

This is to allow the purpose of Love to express through you. How that primary purpose is manifested in this world is your secondary purpose, which might be that you become a teacher of yoga.

Yoga means ‘union.’

This is the direct experience of union on different levels:-

  • Human with Being.
  • Personal with Transpersonal
  • Time with Eternity.

This union requires the foundational yoga life skill of trust and allowing. The deeper the trust the deeper the connection to Source.

Your purpose is to live Love’s Purpose – Guy Finley

Poetry as the Language of Trust

yoga themes and poetry

I will explore the journey of trust by reflecting on one of my favorite poems by one of my favorite modern-day poets.  Poetry is the language of the heart that is the gateway to union with Divine Presence.

A poet is someone who can pour light into a cup, then raise it to nourish your beautiful parched, holy mouth. ― Hafiz

The poem I wish to begin with is Sweet Darkness by David Whyte. I take this poem from the anthology of poetry House of Belonging.

Sweet Darkness
David Whyte

When your eyes are tired
the world is tired also.
When your vision has gone,
no part of the world can find you.

Time to go into the dark
where the night has eyes
to recognize its own.
There you can be sure
you are not beyond love.

The dark will be your home
The night will give you a horizon
further than you can see.

You must learn one thing.
The world was made to be free in.
Give up all the other worlds
except the one to which you belong.

Sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet
confinement of your aloneness
to learn
anything or anyone
that does not bring you alive
is too small for you

I love this poem. Let me now share with you ways in which this poem speaks to me through exploring what I think are some of its key themes.

Sweet Darkness

yoga theme sweet darkness

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You get to experience darkness when you lie down and close your eyes in savasana or corpse pose. This is my favourite yoga pose. I explore this yoga pose in-depth in my key practice that is yoga Nidra.

For many people exploring darkness may not be an inviting idea. However, darkness is a womblike state. It is not negative. This is a feminine dynamic of allowing. It is the dynamic of birthing.

Darkness is that state of unknowing through which Creation can birth the revelatory state of KNOWING through you and as you.

When everything is lost, and all seems darkness, then comes the new life and all that is needed.
Joseph Campbell

For me, this is why I think the poet refers to darkness as being sweet. It invites you into the dark where you might lose the way, but that leads you to take the road less traveled by or the road not taken. (Robert Frost)

This is the road that makes all the difference. It is the road of revelation and yoga.

Trust and Vision

yoga theme trust and vision

The KNOWING of the Light

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Sweet darkness invites you into a paradox. This darkness is a state of unknowing whereby you are KNOWN through.

It is through the dark that you invite the KNOWING of the Light. The darkness is not negative. It is a state of birthing.

When you move into inner darkness of unknowing, you allow yourself to be KNOWN through. You become a SEER. A seer is one who sees beyond separation. This isn’t their vision. It isn’t a goal. It is how they allow Love’s purpose to express through them.

This is the seeing through the third eye—5th Chakra.

With a glimpse of seeing through the eyes of the Divine, one thing is certain. You now KNOW the direction you intend to follow.

Self Assurance

yoga theme and self assurance

I’m Learning to Fly – Tom Petty

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In these shifting sands of time, it is a blessing to FEEL assured that you are headed in the right direction. This is an assurance beyond belief. This is not your personal opinion.  It is not a goal. It is a pull toward transpersonal revelation.

You feel assured you are in alignment with universal intention. You are moving from the darkness of personal separateness and suffering into the Light of At-One-Ment and the end of suffering.

This alignment comes through your willingness to embrace sweet darkness or self-emptying (kenosis).

Time to go into the dark
where the night has eyes
to recognize its own.
There you can be sure
you are not beyond love.

Assurance comes from an inner KNOWING and not from a belief in scripts or creeds.  These are mere pointers along the way.  They invite you to take the journey beyond belief.

Letting Go and Letting Love

yoga theme and letting go

Entering the Sweet Darkness is the practice of letting go. It has different names and involves different practices.

These names include:-

  • Kenosis or self-emptying.
  • Surrender
  • Detachment

All the above involve practices of moving from the will to personal power to alignment with the Will to Love. (4 chakra)

Sweet darkness, for me, is the commitment to following the Lord’s prayer where I affirm, “Thy will be done.”

This invites your entry into Sweet Darkness, whereby you are in the dark. You no longer dictate the agenda. In the words of a Beatles song, which is a modern-day Western-style mantra, you “Let it Be.”

Alone into the All One

yoga theme of trust and aloneness

Looking toward the Light

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Do not equate aloneness with loneliness that is of epidemic proportions during these times of myriad communication.

There is communication but what most people want and need is communion and a sense of intimacy. They wish to be seen—into me see. They wish for acknowledgment.

See me, touch me, feel me. – Pinball Wizard – The Who

Aloneness is different. Aloneness is where you enter what the poet David Whyte calls The House of Belonging. The mystic poet Rumi refers to it as The Heart House.

This is where you intentionally create space for communion with the ALL ONE. This is the direct experience of AT-ONE-MENT. It is the invitation to union. It is the true purpose of yoga.

Aloneness is where you go along the unique path that is yours to travel alone in trust and faith. You intend KNOWING the truth. This is not truth as something to believe in but as a paradoxical experience of NO-THING from which everything is expressed and lived from.

Then stirs the feeling infinite, so felt in solitude, where we are least alone.” ~ Lord Byron, ‘Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage’

We avoid aloneness because we fear feeling empty inside.

The mystic reaches the other side of emptiness that is forever full. The prerequisite for this experience of fulfillment is the paradox of entering the void.


yoga theme savasana

From the Mud of self to the Revelation of Self

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Most yoga classes end with the practice of savanna or corpse pose. This is a lovely way to end the class.

Expand this invitation of resting in the body by inviting it to be a practice of alignment and self-emptying. Make it an invitation to the Sweet Darkness leading to revelation.

This is the revelation that yoga intends for you. It is the self-emptying into union with the Self—union with Love. This revelation is the end of suffering.

Not that life will not be challenging. It means that we recognize the reason for most of our unnecessary suffering.

Self-surrender embodied in the practice of Savasana is the practice of learning to trust the astonishing light of your own being by entering the paradox of Sweet Darkness.

Trust is the 1st step on the journey that is the gradual process of spiritual awakening

This is where you are reborn into the True Self. You experience a rebirth within the depth of the Sweet Darkness within you.

Tony Cuckson
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