I have always loved passing by fields of dandelions; their butter yellow petals declaring independence from the green leaves, stems, grass. To me, dandelions are the ultimate sign that winter can be formally termed a memory. Why these cheery and steadfast flowers have been targeted as a homeowner's enemy is uncertain. It is said that dandelions offer more healthy attributes than broccoli and more "antibiotic" properties than an apple a day. The roots are edible as well and make a potent tea that along with being good for you is said to bring out the psychic abilities of a person if the tea is placed by their bed at night.
I remember once doing a yoga theme about how much I love seagulls. And a friend said, Ugh, I can't stand seagulls! We all see things differently. I am sure many of you reading this are wondering how anyone can like dandelions while I wonder how can you not.
“I was a dandelion puff...Some saw the beauty in me and stooped quietly to admire my innocence. Others saw the potential of what I could do for them, so they uprooted me, seeking to shape me around their needs. They blew at my head, scattering my hair from the roots, changing me to suit them. Yet still others saw me as something that was unworthy and needed to be erased.” ― Nicole Bailey-Williams
Yoga poses, named after sages and animals and aspects of nature, symbolically help teach the yogi to take on the characteristics of the poses' name. In Warrior, can we be strong, steadfast and grounded while also being calm and malleable? In Chair pose, can we still reach high when life attempts to pull us down? There is not a dandelion pose that I am aware of but, if there were, here is what the lesson would be...
Are you adaptable to change?
See, some people try to dig their heels in when the winds of change come along. 'If I just stand strong enough, maybe it will pass me by and then I can relax back into comfort mode.' Did you know that dandelions will alter, if you will, the height their stem stands depending on their surroundings? Have you ever noticed that dandelions growing in a yard stay low to the ground; rather than growing up, they will actually allow their stem to grow horizontally. In a field of longer grass, the same dandelions will grow as straight up as it can.
Are you adaptable to your environment?
Did you know that dandelions are nature's barometer? The white flower heads will close up completely before a rainfall to protect the delicate seeds, the heart of the flower. It will not reopen until the threat of rain has passed.
Are you as adaptable to protecting the seeds of your heart?
And...did you know that the yellow dandelion closes up at night to reopen in the morning? Even the dandelion sets time aside for quiet, for rest, for inner reflection, perhaps?
“It gives one a sudden start in going down a barren, stony street, to see upon a narrow strip of grass, just within the iron fence, the radiant dandelion, shining in the grass, like a spark dropped from the sun.” - Henry Ward Beecher, 1813-1887
In the yoga sutras it says we are effulgent like the sun.