Are you a quitter? I've quit many things in my life at different times; alcohol, sugar, eating animals, watching TV, unhealthy relationships... I have grown to believe that when I want or need to do a thing, whether for work, or money, or health, I am disciplined, I will be able to just do it. Ive got the evidence. Right?
Not always. In fact, not so much RIGHT NOW. So, I feel inclined to contemplate exactly what happened to me that shifted the locus of power from "out there" to "in here', how I accessed the belief and experience that I am indeed able to create the results I desire, to shape the landscape of my life into what I want it to be.
There were years of my life when the state of my mind, my inner thoughts, were dark and bleak. I did not like, much less love, myself. And I felt powerless to make changes. I was identified with myself as a creature that was not lucky, or happy, or lovable, and I did not know that I had the ability within to change any of it, to choose to be different. I felt like I just was the way I was, I was born that way, and that was the way things were meant to be for me. I lived in that state for many years, and overall my life and the will to continue on seemed to spiral downward. Truth be told, I barely made it out alive.
Looking back I see that I had to come to the end of that version of myself, small and finite. When I did, I did not just disappear...a new experience of mySelf was born. Slowly, over the course of time, everything has changed. Bit by bit, choice by choice, a new life, a new landscape, defined by different qualities; peace, purpose, happiness, joy, (yes they are different!)faith, humility. These days , when I want to create change, it seems like the power to do so just is.
Here in the third week of January 2021, I am NOT exactly where I want to be, in some ways. I am taking some time to reflect more deeply on what I want, and why, who in the world I think I am. I am looking at what is needed in the world and how I can make moves to be part of a hopeful future. While I feel challenged to keep daily disciplines, I realize it is because I have outgrown a particular version of myself. Where I am going, this old me does not belong. Time for new thoughts, new behaviors, new inner conversations. I realize I am excited to meet the new me.
It's official, my friends. 2020 is in the rearview mirror. As we head into the second full week of 2021, it is clear that the challenges last year brought did not evaporate on January 1. While we humans are primed to take dimensional leaps forward to create new systems that benefit all, we don't all yet agree on the path forward. Wherever we stand politically and personally, there are others that believe in and stand for values that are different than ours. Some may actually seem to oppose ours, creating a force to be encountered and, hopefully, overcome. It's basic physics. Science. We watched it happen in real time this week; opposing forces creating chaos.
But move forward we must. We are, always and eternally. And to paraphrase Einstein, the solution for how to move forward with compassion and power, into a brave new world of equality, will not arise at the same level of consciousness that created the old oppressive systems. To create a more evolved system, we have to evolve. How we do so, consciously and intentionally, is both simple and complex. Simple because we do it one breath, one decision, one action at a time. Complex because the effect of these decisions, day after day, year after year, can and does create an entirely new landscape, the brave new world we desire.
So here we are, week two of 2021, building a new world together. To be more deliberate in what we are building, I encourage cultivating the habits of self-awareness, reflection, and right action, all paths within the sophisticated wellness system that is yoga. While yoga is a lifestyle, the asana practice is one step on the yogic path. I hope you will join me for practice this week