It’s been a long time since I’ve written. I didn’t forget, I just have have been busy remembering other things.
Life is a funny, strange, wonderful, painful, confusing, joyful, amazing, bewildering, whirling dervish of lessons to be learned. They continue to surface time and time again until they are learned, often in multiple ways. Figuring out how to live and learn again and again and again is what life is all about, I guess, but it sure does have a tendency to make me stop and say, “Holy shit!”
Some of what I have learned (or am learning… or learning again) :
When someone shows you who they are, believe them. We all want to believe the best of people. We want to believe that everyone is good and loving and honest and straight forward with their intentions and motivations. The truth of the matter, however, is that this desire to believe in the goodness of people (that really *does* exist,) and the desire to ignore the bad parts (which also do exist) can cloud our understanding of reality. Reality: Actions speak louder than words. Believe what you see, not what you hear.
To thine own self be true. Almost everyone has something they do. Almost everyone has something to which they belong. Almost everyone has something in which they believe. Almost everyone has groups of friends, family, associates, and acquaintances. I am no different – I have all of those things, just as you do, too. Here’s the deal, though: I am NOT those things. I am more than that and so are you. If you find yourself constantly talking only about your job or your organization, it’s likely that you have lost (or lost touch with) the part of you that lives and breathes and shines without titles, without affiliations, without labels and connections. It’s really easy to lose that. Believe me, I know. Be who you are, not what you do.
Keep a little for yourself. Oh we yogi(ni)s are generous people. We give our time, our love, our ideas, our knowledge, our spirit, our philosophy, our energy, and almost anything else folks ask for / look at / need. There is beauty and grace in giving and giving selflessly, but no one ever said that giving it all away is a good idea. Probably because it isn’t a good idea at all! Ganga White talks about the heart pumping the best, most oxygen rich blood back to itself first before pumping it to the other parts of the body. Pretty damn smart, eh? Keep a little of what you have for yourself. You deserve it, you need it, and really, you’re probably the only one who will truly appreciate it. Folks can’t drink from an empty well.
We teach what we most need to learn. While it might seem a little contradictory to the above lesson, you have to teach from where you are. There are times I return from teaching a class and have that feeling of Oh holy hell, that was a horrible class. I wonder if the students thought I was phoning it in? Was I phoning it in? Where am I? What am I doing? Don’t get all worried -every teacher who teaches anything anywhere has had those feelings from time to time. We feel that way because we honestly care about what we’re doing and who we are teaching. It matters to us. That doesn’t mean, however, that we’re always deeply rooted in what we are trying to teach. Usually when I feel that way, however, it’s because I’m not in tune with myself. I’m not drawing from where I am but instead trying to be and teach from somewhere else. In the last few weeks, I have taught some good classes and a few extraordinary classes. 3 guesses as to which classes came from my deepest truths? Regardless if you are experiencing joy, confusion, pain, or fear, there is a yoga for that! Find it, live it, and teach it (you don’t have to explain your situation, though. In fact, please don’t.) Everyone will learn and heal together.
While this isn’t an exhaustive list, it is some of what has been going on in my little world on and off the mat. I have been keeping a lot of things to myself and not writing as much. While it’s helpful for me to have time to think and process, the truth is that I have missed writing here very much. I hope to be back to writing regularly, although I’m not forcing solutions or making any promises. I’m just continuing on the long and winding road, one step at a time.