In the quietude before dawn, when the world is still enveloped in shadows, we find a moment untouched by the complications of modern life. It’s a sacred sliver of time that many of us yearn to fill with ritual, a spell where the spiritual meets the elemental. A yoga mat unrolled on a dewy beach, a series of postures synchronized with the birth of a new day—these acts become more than exercise; they morph into a profound dialogue with the universe. Yet, it’s crucial to remember that the sacredness of these moments lies not in the motions themselves but in the authenticity with which we perform them.

Sometimes, amid our quest for spiritual elevation, we encounter charismatic figures who promise shortcuts to enlightenment. They offer us ancient mantras, intricate asanas, and a community that sings the same hymn. For a while, it feels like we’ve found our tribe, a sanctuary where everyone speaks the same spiritual language. But what happens when our inner voice starts whispering doubts, when the sanctuary starts to feel like a prison, and the tribe appears to be under a spell we are no longer in? The unraveling of such illusions can be both liberating and unnerving, leading us back to a path that’s uniquely our own.


I remember dawn, a sun greeting on the shore,
the tide’s rhythm my only guide, asking for nothing more.
But then I entered sanctum doors, where an all-knowing guru sat—
promised higher states of being, yet left my soul shell shocked, flat.
Beachside mornings turned into rooms of ceaseless chant,
my body bend in asanas, in a spiritual recant.
The sun I once greeted now rose without my view,
as I was tangled in a web of devotion, knotted askew.
I wore my service like a shroud, sewn with unseen tears,
trading ocean’s horizon for walls, laden with veiled fears.
What was once a dance with the day turned obligatory rite—
my free-will offering now coerced, morning light dimmed to twilight.
Mantras that once held magic turned monotonous and stale,
an eerie chorus to a guru, who behind charisma hid a tale.
Bathing in his words, I felt adrift, no longer myself but part—
of an orchestrated devotion, that estranged my yoking heart.
I’ve left that ashram’s haunt, its incense and facade,
stepped out into the open, where authenticity isn’t outlawed.
The ocean calls me back, as I unlearn and reframe,
no guru dictating postures, no doctrine in my name.
I greet the sun anew, though its light touches scars,
my practice now a whisper, not a mantra stretching far.
As I fold and breathe and stretch, reclaiming every lost part,
I find a new horizon within—my soul’s true restart.
Now each dawn’s a reclamation, as I sink my feet in sand,
a rebirth, not in scripture, but in sea’s unscripted land.
With the sun a silent witness, I embrace a yoga free—
from a guru’s heavy doctrine, to a practice that’s just universe and me.

(11/01/2021 © Julia Delaney)


Follow your heart.

Be Alive 🌱
Love ❤️, Julia



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