Today I had help with my morning yoga practice. I sat down to begin, and the cat came up desperately needing to be nuzzled. I patted and stroked and nudged him. Then he needed to be fed. I went upstairs, fed him, let him out, and started the coffee. Then I came back down to the mat. This time the dog followed me. I knelt in Virasana (hero). He sat down and leaned against me. I put my arm around him. Then I chanted the invocation to Patanjali. The dog was melting into my side. When I was done, adding “Om shanti shanti shanti om,” he went upstairs. It was a pretty nice start to my practice.
(My brother’s first dog was named Shanti, and I always think of her when I chant for peace.)