Hard to accept? Maybe your image of a ‘Yogi’ is of an individual who walks around in robes or without it, has a long flowing beard or long open hairstyle, long mala beads around the neck and wrists, moving around with a constipated look on the face and all other stereotypical forms handed down through constant messaging. Or for you a ‘Yogi’ would bring an image of an individual who can twist and turn his body in ways you cannot imagine you could possibly do yourself or a person who has special powers to read minds of people and see through their bodies. Then it will definitely be difficult to accept that you are a ‘Yogi’.
I think it is no more than an image and concept in people’s minds. Those things don’t define anyone.
If ‘Yoga’ means unifying then it cannot be ‘exclusive’! It encompasses all those who are and play a part in sustaining life in this universe.
Unfortunately, all the definitions handed down to us over years have been limited by the ‘language’ or ‘vocabulary’ and the possible subjective interpretations. For example, there is no equivalent in Tibetan language for the English word ‘emotion’ or ‘low self-esteem’.
So when you say the term ‘Yoga’ is about unifying then what I am understanding is an ‘all-encompassing’ ‘boundary-less’ state where no one is constrained by limitations of language and subjective interpretations. It’s possibly about ‘accepting’ your part in the ‘whole’ and doing it with all the joy as would a ‘child’ do before it learns the language. In the ‘child’ you see ‘Yogi’ at play and ‘Yoga’ in practice. You can see the power of a ‘yogi’ even in the eyes of those who are ‘dying’ as they limit the use of language when transacting with the universe. Both don’t feel the need to be bound by or fit the rules, conditions, categories, definitions, images and concepts of the world.
When you are not bound by the limitation of ‘practices’ you surely are a ‘Yogi’!