"Experience is the only source of knowledge." Some guy named Albert Einstein said this and I mostly agree. I was listening to a talk by Christopher Wallis, Sanskritist and Scholar of Indian Religion, yesterday in which he states that, in the West, "Data is King". I will ignore the grammatical error here (my university psychology professor was all over us about "data" being a plural noun and how nobody uses it correctly) and focus on the important bit that many people in the West need to know the facts and the research and everything relating to your mind before they will even consider trying something. In some ways this is smart; make sure you know what you're getting into, right? However, it is also quite limiting. The other side of this is what Christopher says tends to happen in the East where folks "Do in order to know". I'm calling this a state where "Experience is King". I find this particularly helpful when folks are considering trying yoga for the first time. They want to know all about it, the research related to the benefits and cautions, the reasons for doing it and so on. Usually I just say, try it and see how it is for you. You don't have to believe anything I say about yoga; just experience it for yourself. There are so many little adages relating to experience preceding (or at least greatly enhancing) knowledge. Here are a couple: 1) You can read about a mango, learn how to grow a mango, look at a picture of a mango, but if you haven't tasted a mango, you will never really "know" a mango. 2) You can read a list of alignment instructions about a yoga pose and see someone doing the pose, but you have to experience the pose to know what it's all about. Reading books and studying the research are a great way to learn and to know, but true knowing seems to come from experience. Yoga is about having an experience; it's about embodiment, revealing with your body your divine nature, your brightest light, the truest part of you. It's not something you can know just from data. Many things in life are like this. Love is the most obvious to me. Yoga is love (if I may be so bold). It is love with your whole body and mind and spirit.