We talk a lot in our yoga practices about intention. Set an intention for your practice. Set an intention for your day. Make your moves with intention. Approach your practice with intention.
I think intention, in this context, is closely related to mindfulness. Being aware of and in the present moment. I think intention, in this context, is also very closely related to an aim or a plan. There's another meaning for intention in the medical context.
In medicine, intention is associated with “primary union” or “first intention healing.” An example of wound healing by primary intention is a surgical incision. It's a direct union of smooth skin edges. It's a bringing together of two parts that have been separated.
I'm going to try to bring this full circle.
We try to approach people and situations with good intentions. Sometimes we fuck up. We all do. So in life, as in yoga and in medicine, our intention starts with an aim or a plan. It is carried out mindfuly and with awareness. Implemented correctly, all is well. But when we wound ourselves or others through our actions (unintentionally), there is another application for the word intention.
We can bring the separated parts back together, using a primary union to heal the wound.
When dealing with personal wounds, this is - perhaps - a relatively simple process - perhaps not. Look deeply and be mindful of the wound and bring the parts together.
When dealing with wounds we've delivered to others (unintentionally), it is likely more difficult - but not necessarliy. In this instance, it may be more akin to a "second intention" process. In a second intention the wound is more extensive and the skin cannot be brought back together. Still, it is possible to heal.
I'm pretty certain I've missed the clarity mark here. But I tried.
My point is this: Approach your practice, your friends, your acquaintances, your life with good intention. Act with intention - mindfulness and awareness. When wounded be willing to look deeply to bring things back together through first intention - primary union.
It's that simple. It's that difficult.