It took me so many years to develop my daily practice and there has never been anything that has transformed my life so magnificently. There is no real explaining it. It seems that practice allows my essential goodness to take a front seat and then the sweetness of life infuses my daily life more completely.
Just the other day as I was preparing to order my aquatic body work pool on line when I received an e mail from Katy my student. Her teacher from college, who practices water massage, had sent her a message. It just so happened that our meeting was ordained. He was dismantling his pool and wanted to find another home for it. He and his wife were downsizing. I was ordering a pool. We both got what we most needed. He can continue his love of water massage close to home and I won the perfect therapeutic pool sweepstakes!! It is a the perfect size. It has been tried and the bugs have been worked out in our climate and it is recycled. When all the pieces fall into place like this it is hard not to be a believer. We realize what we focus on and my practice helps me to focus on the essential goodness of this precious human life I have been given.
Seeing how life is instead of how we want it to be leads us on the path of transformation.
Mothers and teachers can fall into the habit of telling us how we should be… oh all this shoulding makes one want to flee! I see as I move deeper into the study of yoga, the yoga of the ancients, that it is much more useful to expose the “realities” of life. We must discuss the struggles we all face in our search for fulfillment; the way things are rather than the way things “should” be.
This begins with the harsh reality that pain is a part of every human’s life. We deny our pain in a variety of ways until we are overcome by it. We so fear the power of pain and sorrow that we shy away from exploring the roots of our suffering and its crippling effect on our lives. Patanjali tells us that suffering “does not walk into our lives alone, it is accompanied by unending likes and dislikes, denial, attachment and carelessness as we rush to get away from our suffering.”
The afflictions which we must attend to, if we wish to ease our suffering are: “our unwillingness to examine the validity of what we believe to be true (avida); unwavering faith in our distorted self identity (asmita); attachment to what appears to be us and ours (raga); aversion to what poses a threat to what we are and what we own (dvesha); and fear of losing ourselves and our familiar world (abhinivesha).” These afflictions have become a living part of us. They influence our thoughts and feelings therefore our actions. These unconscious actions strengthen the afflictions increasing our pain and suffering. All this serves as an opaque cover of our redeeming grace: at our essence we are pure beings able to transcend “all traces of pain and sorrow. Discovering our pure being is our birthright. There is no higher achievement… and not greater lose than dying without knowing this truth. When we discover our pure self we become aware of our life’s purpose. This fills us with the power we need to pursue and define our purpose. This can free us from attachment to the past and uncertainty about the future. This is the ground of lasting happiness.”
The hero’s journey begins. The heroine is not afraid to explore life’s afflictions; the dark side of life that dims our radiance. Having courage to explore our shadow side can free us from our suffering. Armed with love and determination we go forth.
This was inspired on my second read of the introduction of:
Pandit Rajmani Tigunait, P. (2017). The Practice of the Yoga Sutra, Sadhana Pada. Honesdale, PA: Himalayan International Institude of Yoga Science and Philosophy of the USA.
Taken from The Eleventh Hour; the biography of Swami Rama by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait
What you need to renounce is the unwanted part of yourself, not the world….A failure is more rewarding than a success providing you learn something from it. See how subtle are the causes of emotion. Ultimately, they stem from ego, the awareness within you that does not want it image to be disfigured. From this ego come attachment, aversion, desire, and anger all of which create delusion. Delusion is damaging to memory and the power of discrimination, attachment aversion desire anger delusion, loss of memory and loss of discrimination are children of the ego, they eclipse the intrinsic wisdom of the soul.