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3:09 pm

Purna is Better Than Perfect

In “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty”, the main character lives a life of adventure and fearlessness in his daydreams. How often do we do the very same thing, though maybe not on such an exaggerated scale? How often do we consider possibilities, but never act on them? How often do we really employ the Nike slogan, and JUST DO IT? More importantly — what’s holding us back?


Blame it on perfection. Many of us believe that we can, and should, work to achieve perfection. The right job, the right school, the right clothes, the right life. If our teeth aren’t perfect, we get braces. If our bodies aren’t perfect, we diet/workout/get lipo. If our relationships aren’t perfect, we embark on fixing them or looking for other ones. This underlying current of perfection often causes us to live based on what appears to be right — not necessarily what is right for us.


Yoga teaches us that true perfection is only found in being whole. “Purna” is a Sanskrit word meaning “complete” or “whole”, and it describes the state we strive for through our practice. For the character Walter Mitty, being “stuck” and  lacking the self-empowerment to truly live his life kept him locked in his daydreaming world. “Stuck” energy manifests in many different forms, from our patterns of thought to the way we forge ahead on the required quests for perfection — our kids’ achievements, our lawns, our abs, our cars, our hair, our careers.   Yoga teaches us that everything in this world arises from one single energy, or Shakti (meaning power or empowerment).  This energy is always full, complete, perfect, and joyful. Author Sally Kempton notes, “That one energy (shakti) is as much in the dirty dishes in your sink as in the notes of a Mozart violin concerto. When we are in touch with that energy, all dichotomies—light and dark, good and bad, male and female—are resolved, and all apparent imperfections are revealed as part of the whole.”


For this week’s class, I designed a practice meant to help create shakti. With shakti, we can become “unstuck”, we can live more fearlessly, and we can cultivate purna. Because when we’re whole — we’re perfect.



Road – Nick Drake

Stay Alive – Jose Gonzalez

Replay – Zendaya

Jigsaw Falling Into Place – Radiohead

Dangerous – Big Data

Ways to Go – Grouplove

Far Away – Junip

Step Out – Jose Gonzalez

Dirty Paws – Of Monsters and Men

Sail Away – David Gray

Lake Michigan – Rogue Wave

Adore You – Miley Cyrus

Pink Moon – Nick Drake

This Years Love – David Gray

Waiting for my Real Life to Begin – Colin Hay

Quintessence – Theodore Shapiro


Author : Buffy Kelly
Buffy began studying yoga as a means of cultivating balance and ease in her life. She earned her 200-HR teaching certification in Tantra Yoga, studying under Hollace Stephenson and Johnna Smith. Today, yoga is an integral and deeply meaningful part of her and her family’s lives. Buffy loves sharing the power of yoga , and offers athletic, joyful practices geared toward developing happiness, fun, balance, and grace in stressful lives. Buffy is an award-winning Creative Director, Copywriter, and business owner. Her advertising agency, Tattoo Projects, was named Small Ad Agency of the Year byAdvertising Age Magazine, and #2 Fastest-Growing Privately-Held Company byCharlotte Business Journal. Her work has been recognized by Communications Arts, London's Contagious Magazine, Creativity, and Adweek, and has earned creative awards from international ONE Show, Philly Gold Awards, New England Hatch Awards, National ADDY Awards, New York Festivals, and many more. Buffy has been named one of the Top 25 Advertising Working Mothers in the Nation by Working Mother Magazine and Advertising Women of New York, and a 2011 Woman Extraordinaire by Business Leader. Buffy finds great joy in everything to do with her family, pets, and flower garden. She is a lacrosse mom, dance and gymnastics mom, and a daughter of the original McCoy clan, of the Hatfield-McCoy Feud, from Pike County, Kentucky.