Tonight at dinner my daughter asked me why I haven't been posting anymore. "You should start posting again, I liked reading it." she said. So... Here you go, Tayler.
In January, I decided that this blog had come to an end. I felt like there are so many people in yoga-land speaking so many words that it seemed pointless for me to add to the whirlwind of words.
I'm still not sure I have anything worthwhile to say that others haven't already said more eloquently than I but Tayler's words inspired me.
Words have power. The way we use our words matters. Interestingly, I've been learning about the power of words by keeping quiet. Silence speaks volumes. It's the act of listening that teaches us the power of words. I feel the power of them in my gut. I've been using my ears as filters. I have the power to choose which words I take in and digest and which words I let just pass right on through.
In yoga-land, we use mantras. Mantras are sound vibrations that have specific energetic effects.
We have thousands of years of evidence to support the effect of mantra meditation. Chanting the names of God brings you into a stream of consciousness that washes away your worries. The effect is powerful and undeniable.
Have you considered the energetic effects of the words you use all day long? I work in a busy office. I talk to people for 8 full hours a day. Some days, by 5pm I'm sick of the sound of my own voice. I've expended so much prana and yet I wonder if anything I said was of any value at all. Do me words improve the silence?
It's in the silence that God speaks to us. How much time do you spend in silence? What does it feel like?
Sometimes, like tonight, someone inspires us with their words. Other times, the sharp, piercing nature of someone's words make us contract.
I used to take everything so personally. I wore my feelings on my sleeve. Every harsh word would feel like a knife in my heart. When I'm present and aware, the harsh words or criticism from others do not hold the same power. I'm certainly aware of the abrasiveness but it doesn't feel quite so personal. I rely on my internal filters to discern what to digest and what to release.
I spent many years in a relationship where words were used as a weapon. By contrast, over the last couple of years, I've felt the "armor" start to melt away. I no longer live with daily verbal attacks. I no longer need to keep my heart guarded.
I find myself unprepared and vulnerable to harsh words. The abrasiveness of words feel a little sharper now, without the armor around my heart. I need to remind myself not to take them personal. When I'm in the present moment, I can recognize the suffering of the person speaking sharp words.
The Goddess, Saraswati's gift is the gift of sound. She gives the gift of sound and the gift of discernment. Interesting, don't you think? She gives us sound and discernment. Through her power of discernment we can choose our words. Through her power of discernment we know what to digest and use as fuel for growth and what to release as "waste". Through her power of discernment we can choose when to speak and when to listen. Do your words improve upon the silence?
Saraswati, brings order to chaos. How does she do that? Through knowledge. How do we learn? Through listening. When we speak we are showing others what we "know". When we listen, we open ourselves up to receive the gift of knowledge.
What I know for sure.....
Words have the power to inspire or crush the spirit. As I close my eyes tonight this I pray:
Grant me the strength to speak my truth with integrity and grace.
Grant me the wisdom to know when to speak and when to leave words unspoken.
Bless me with the power of discernment so that I may know what words serve a higher purpose and when they serve the ego.
May my words, be your words.
May my hands be your hands
May my life be an instrument of your Divine will.
And remember: "You don't have to say everything you know."