With Easter Sunday having just passed I have been thinking a lot about death and rebirth, about letting go of the things that no longer serve me and about holding on to the things that do. I’ve been thinking of the idea of resurrection, of a revival, a renaissance. I am reminded that each day brings the possibility to resurrect my best self, to restore my values and to stimulate my senses, to let my light shine and to let the light of others around me shine even brighter.On Easter Sunday I went to Eddie’s class at Yoga Soup which I sometimes lovingly refer to as “church”—it’s usually the same sermon about the truth of our shape and letting our physical self “die” so that our spiritual self can radiant, uninhibited by the mind, the body. The first words out of Eddie’s mouth on Sunday were “today is quite possibly the best day of the year to practice yoga”. I smiled because I couldn’t think of a better place to be that day than on my mat. For me, yoga is my chance at redemption.
This idea of redemption, of resurrection then led me to think about my everyday life. I began to think about the things that serve me like yoga, and writing, and rest, and the things that don’t like anxiety and stress. I thought about the things I have yet to do and the “30 before I’m 30” list that I’ve gone over again and again in my head. I questioned what “the truth of our shape” truly means and I imagined what it would be like to let go of the physical self, to quiet the mind chatter, and to truly exist from the heart center on and off the mat. To be ecstatic, blissful, free. To be able to approach daily life with the same sense of ease I find on my mat.
I’ve thought about this idea of lent and giving up something that no longer serves me. I thought of my friends who have given up chocolate or alcohol or co-dependency and am inspired by their dedication and will. Several times over the past 40 days I’ve asked myself: what am I willing to give up? Maybe I can give up beer for a month or all processed foods. Perhaps I will say “no” to red meat or “no” to carbs. Then I started to really get curious and flipped it around, what if instead of saying “no” I began to say “yes” more often? Where could “yes” lead me? Instead of restricting, confining, punishing myself, what if instead I opened new spaces, affirmed what does serve me, and dedicated myself to that? What if I said “yes” to more yoga, more greens, more love, more writing, more “me” time? Saying “yes” to the things I love reminded me of Sutra 9 “The Heart of Space” and how wonderful it is to live in duty to the things that serve us, to live in a sense of awe, of wonder, in a “yes” state of mind.
Since I missed out on giving up something for lent, I’ve decided to say “yes” to something for the month of April—to more kirtan music, more chanting, more kundalini, more mantra. The other night I went to a yoga class led by Brett Land at Yoga Soup and accompanied by live music—quite possibly the best way to end to a Monday, ever— and we did a few extended ohms alongside the live music. The vibrations filled the room with energy, brought me back to a space of deep relaxation and gratitude, and nourished every cell. This is what serves me I thought. So this month I will listen to more kirtan music, maybe on my drive to work or when I’m falling asleep and entering dreamland. I will seek out different kundalini classes in town and will make time to let the kundalini work its magic. Maybe I’ll check out the crystal singing bowls or sound healing ceremonies at the Salt Caves. Whatever it may be I’ll let the vibrations, the music, the sound, open the heart of space.
Sutra 9 “The Heart of Space”
The senses declare an outrageous world —
Sounds and scents, ravishing colors and shapes,
Ever-changing skies, iridescent reflections —
All these beautiful surfaces
Decorating vibrant emptiness.
The god of love is courting you.
Every perception is an invitation into revelation.
Hearing, seeing, smelling, tasting, touching —
Ways of knowing creation,
Transmissions of electric realization.
The deepest reality is always right here.
Encircled by splendor,
In the center of the sphere,
Meditate where the body thrills
To currents of intimate communion.
Follow your senses to the end and beyond —
Into the heart of space.