Embodying Middot

We can infuse any embodied practice, including Yoga, with an awareness of qualities which might deepen our spiritual growth. Each trait can be invoked in any and every pose we do. Practicing these qualities on the mat helps us integrate these qualities into our being. This gives us a greater chance of continuing to exude the qualities we’ve cultivated in the world beyond our mat. There is no ‘perfect pose’ for any given middah. Rather, we can take the same exact sequence any given day and infuse the practice with whatever kavanah (direction or intention) we wish to cultivate within ourselves.

Click-through the buttons above to explore three middot, Anava, Menuchat Hanefesh, and Netzach, through various postures (images at bottom of page).

Each of these middot must balance with its opposite to work in harmony together. To cultivate only one quality to its extreme is detrimental to our growth and antithetical to the idea behind cultivating and developing character traits in the first place. In the Mussar tradition, we each have our own life’s curriculum, with our own strengths and our own challenges. The goal is to create balance by engaging with our traits as we grow and change.

When we approach these qualities or middot by strengthening our kinesthetic understanding of each principle, we are able to engage with these middot in our lives from an organic, embodied, grounded place.