Yoga with Mirella Nicholson

Yoga with Mirella Nicholson

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The sun will come out tomorrow...

It's been challenging to find the time to post regularly. In addition to the regular craziness of my life I'm currently in the middle of a year long Ayurveda Lifestyle consoler program. I'm loving every minute of the course and wish that I had more time to devote to it. I honestly feel like the information is life changing. Hopefully once I earn my certificate I'll be sharing more about Ayurveda but for now I have something else I'd like to talk about.

There's 2 things rattling around in my brain that are most pressing. Let's see if I can combine them into something that makes sense.....

Last week-end I had the privilege of offering a workshop on the moon salutation. Afterwards, I felt like I wasn't clear enough about the idea of setting intentions. What I want to say is that setting an intention isn't simply setting it and forgetting about it. When we make the commitment to do a 30 or 40 day sadhana we are committing to actively working on the intention we set for ourselves.

Let's say that our intention is to not get stuck in our emotions. The intention is set, planting the seeds for what we want to grow, then each day when we do our sadhana (spiritual practice) we reaffirm the intention. As we go about the business of our lives we water the seeds of our intention by being conscious and noticing when a strong emotion comes up. With the intention fresh in our mind from our morning practice we can chose to either let ourselves get stuck in our emotions or we can chose to recognize how fleeting they are and let them go.

Each time we make the conscious choice to reaffirm our intention by our actions we are feeding the seeds and our intention gets stronger. The stronger our little seedlings get, the more beautifully they will flower. Like our gardens, the seeds we plant with our intentions need to be tended to in order for them to bear fruit.

The example I used of not getting stuck in our emotions is the second thing I wanted to talk about. A classmate of my daughter's killed himself last week. It breaks my heart to think that this young boy felt such despair that killing himself was the only solution he could think of. How sad that he couldn't see past his current state of emotions to the fact that he had his whole life filled with endless possibilities ahead of him.

No matter how desperate our situation seems in any given moment we must remember that it's temporary. I'm remembering the story of the little hungry caterpillar. "Just when the little caterpillar thought his life was over he turned into a beautiful butterfly."

This tragic event reaffirms for me my intention of fostering community. No one should ever feel so alone and desperate that suicide seems like the only option. Asking for support is not a sign of weakness... in fact it takes great strength and courage. It's also important that we pay attention and be present in our interactions with others. Maybe the text message asking if you want to go grab a beer is actually someone reaching out for support. Don't be too busy to offer some support, even if it's only a quick phone call.

So when you are planting your seeds of intention be sure to plant seeds which will bear fruit that can be used to feed and nourish others as well as yourself.

Om Shanti Om!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Durga Ma give me strength.....

"All that evil needs to succeed is for good people to stand by and do nothing"

The last few weeks have been particularly intense. There has been a tremendous amount of harshness. I've hesitated writing because my emotions have been pretty raw and I have been accused of being hurtful and unloving at times when I speak my mind. I've been questioning the value of speaking my mind.

After much self-reflection, and examining the role of my ego in regards to recent events, I can honestly say that my motivation for calling people out on their appalling behavior is coming from a genuine desire to protect people from getting hurt.

Over and over I'm told that I need to be accepting and forgiving of others. Over and over I'm told that love is the only answer. Durga's love is the answer we need right now. Durga is a fierce warrior Goddess. She is also fiercely protective. I very much feel that intense Durga energy.

"All that evil needs to succeed is for good people to stand by and do nothing."

Admittedly, I'm no expert in Hindu mythology but I have read and heard many stories over the years. The stories tell us how the Gods and Goddesses had to stand up and fight the righteous fight and destroy the demons that were terrorizing the people.

My fear is that the good people have this misconception that they must learn to love and accept evil. 

Here's the thing.  At least as I see it.

Whether we want to accept it or not, some people are evil.  There are people in this world that want to do harm to others.  Yes, I do believe that God is in everyone and yes, I do believe everyone needs love.  However, that doesn't mean that good people need to invite evil into our homes.  That sure as hell doesn't mean that we should give evil any position of authority or leadership.

Good people need to engage their inner Durga Ma and stand up and fight for those who are unable or unwilling to fight for themselves.   A long time ago, a teacher told me that Durga creates a protective shield around you and fights for you until you are strong enough to stand up for yourself and fight the righteous fight along side of her.

I have a strong connection to Durga Ma....I'm ready to stand alongside of her to protect the people I love and care about.  I used to worry that my fierce protective nature goes against the teachings of yoga but then I remembered a quote that David Newman shared with our ytt class...

"You can kick someone out of your home, just not out of your heart"

I can still feel compassion for the evil people as they clearly don't see their own Divinity but that doesn't mean I want to invite them to lunch and that doesn't mean I'm going to stand by and watch them bully and terrorize people.  Doing nothing is no longer an option.  Recoginze that by our inaction we are playing a part in the success of the evil people's actions.  

Om Hrim Shrim Dum Durgayai Namaha!!!