Is Inspiration yoga?

Last week I wrote I was inspired to create by Pink Snow.  I made a piece of jewellery that I hope will invoke cherry blossoms and all that cherry blossoms mean for the wearer.   

It started me wondering – what is inspiration and where does it come from?  Is it the same as motivation?  Or are they more like a pair…inspiration leads and motivation follows?  What about when we are inspired by a person? 

To me, there are nuances in meaning.  I can seek inspiration in many ways – through nature, by doing something fun, by trying something new, by reading or listening to music, or even seeing someone else’s creative work.  And when I say I am inspired by someone I admire or who succeeded at something I’d like to do, I am really speaking about motivation to be a “better” me; to reach for goals and aspirations; to uncover more of my character, of my self.   

Of course I had to turn to Wikipedia:

Inspiration may refer to:

  • Artistic inspiration, sudden creativity in artistic production
  • Biblical inspiration, the doctrine in Judeo-Christian theology concerned with the divine origin of the Bible
  • Creative inspiration, sudden creativity when a new invention is created
  • Inhalation, the movement of air into the lungs

Wait a sec….What was that??????    Inspiration can mean Inhalation as in breathe?! 

Indeed, under artistic inspiration, good ol’ Wiki offers this: 

Therefore, the invocations of the muses and the various poetic gods (Apollo and Dionysus, in particular) are earnest prayers for inspiration, for the breath of the god. (emphasis mine)

There it is:  Breath of the god = Prana – life force; Pranayama – control of life force through the control of breath.  Yoga.

Inspiration is yoga

Yoga is inspiration



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8 responses to “Is Inspiration yoga?

  1. Ahappyyogi

    I like that thought, that is inspiration.

  2. I love the etymology of words. It constantly fascinates me.

    For me inspiration means “in spirit” (and it’s not dissimilar to enthusiasm which Danielle LaPorte talks about in her Fire Starter Sessions and which literally means “god within”).

    I think when we are inspired, we’re connecting to the most authentic part of ourselves. I see it happening when I’m out with my camera. Something clicks in my head and I’m in the zone. The more that happens, the more magic happens with my camera.

    I think being inspired by someone else is about an internal recognition of their authentic self. I’ve looked at paintings that I love and feel an emotional wave come over me. On a television documentary recently, the presenter was looking at a church that Matisse had designed and built and you could see him experiencing the same recognition of that creative spirit. I think this creative spirit travels across time and space and it connects us in some way to the creator of the work. If you want to be really philosophical, it’s about connecting to creation as a whole because really we’re all from the same source.

    • Oh, Nicola, this is great! Love the connecting to our most authentic self. I also believe that the “god within” is also the god all around us. It’s what connects everthing. Your meaning adds to the richness. Thank you.

  3. Ahhh! I love this!! I’ve thought many “Yoga is…” statements, but I don’t think I’ve yet stumbled upon “Yoga is inspiration.” Perfect. 🙂

    • One of Bikram’s lectures is about how “everything” is yoga. He focuses on the physical in the talk, but the concept is indeed everything. Nicola’s comment below talks about the authentic self. Indeed yoga brings me to my authentic self…as does inspiration and creativity. So many routes to self.

      • Juliana

        That lecture was so epic. People asked the funniest questions. “So what is NOT yoga?” He was all like, “Nothing!! … you IDIOTS!”

        But anyway: I’ve been hearing dialogue in lots of different languages out here, and I always notice that in most languages – German, French, Italian, Spanish – the word for inhale is something like “inspirare.” Which leads VERY clearly to the same conclusion: inhalation = inspiration. Pranayama = taking in air = taking in life force, God, prana, or whatever you like to call it. Good stuff!!

      • Nice to hear from you, J!
        The boss is pretty direct when you don’t get something he things you should! Haha.

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