THE LONGING FOR THE SOURCE
There is one thing all human beings have in common; we all want to feel at home. Now, what is it that makes us feel at home? Home is a place of love, a place where we feel connected with our surroundings, where we are at peace with ourselves and where we can let go. Ultimately, home is a state of consciousness and an expression of the source. For me, yoga is being at home with ourselves and our surroudings. A regular Hatha Yoga and meditation practice gives us support to transform and recognize our true nature.
Our true nature never changes. Just like the seasons change and everything in nature is in constant flux, so do we eternally change as personalities and bodies. But that background of being, the very force of nature behind all movement, that power is unchangeable! In yoga, this unchangeable background is called Shiva. Everything that changes, and the energy and form through which we can experience this invisible force, is called Shakti.
The power of nature, is the same power that runs through our veins and inspires our minds and hearts to express ourselves in joy and freedom. That joy and freedom is in intself more valuable for me then anything that we can acquiere. My friend Tara reminded me today about the fact that when we die, we don’t take any material items with us. So rather then looking for happinness through material achievements, I like to remind myself again and again, that happinness can only be found here and now, right at the source!
Although, feeling at home seems so natural and easy, so why is it that so many of us are struggling with feelings of alienation and seperation?
Noisy mind and inner stillness
Just like the sun is always shining, but we may not always see it because of clouds, so is our source always flowing, but we may not percieve it because of our noisy mind. We all are probably familiar with that ‘monkey inside’ that continually jumps from one thought to the other. And the more we fight with our minds and try to forcefully still it, the more tense we become. So, there must be another way... What if we let the mind do its thing and recognize ourselves as the witness? Who is it that sees the thoughts? This I consider the most valuable aspect of yoga; detachment from thoughts. Of course, it is much easier to write and read about it, then to actually apply it to daily circumstances. I would like to invite you, and remind myself, whenever we get entangled in stress, reactivity, stories, to just take a breath and find spaciousness within. This spaciousness is an expression of the source and it will bring peace, happinness and prosperity to what we do.
Alienation from nature and coming back home to Mother Earth
The fact that so many people nowadays experience depression, loneliness and alienation has much to do with how we live. Billions of people are living their lives without ever bearly touching Mother Earth, with breathing poluted air and by watching cement and brick buildings, rather then seeing nature around us. Although, many people are truly inspired by what cities have to offer, the probability of becoming out of tune with the forces of nature, elements and plants, while living a city life, cannot be ignored. Luckily, governments are starting to recognize more and more the necessity of greenery and nature in cities.
Can you recall the feeling of watching an ocean, mountain view, sunset, or walking in a lush forest? For me, this is life in its fullest expression! Nature has been evolving on earth for millions, or billions of years. Everything we see around us in nature, is the result of every other event that has ever happened in history! Nature is naturally intelligent and perfect. By simply being present with nature, we are tuning in with the Source itself. We don’t have to visualize rainbows, intergalactic beings and download the voice of arch angels to feel Spiritual. Spirituality for me is being expressed in every moment when I am present, when I drink from the spring, feel the earth under my feet and the sun on my skin. Because in nature, nothing is seperate and everything is part of the hole existence, an expression of the source...
Conditioned behaviour, and habits
What is mind? It can be seen as a bundle of conditionings, habits and impressions that thrive every action of our lives. Everytime we don’t react upon an impuls, we weaken that specific conditioning and we can start replacing it with a conscious reaction. Let’s say: whenever our housemate gets stressed and makes an unwelcome comment to you, we may be conditioned to take over the stress and get into an argument or fight. Now, what if we learn to observe our own mind and then make a conscious choice, while remaining in touch with ourselves? It doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be angry or upset. We simply bring awareness again and again back within. This way, we can start to replace unhealthy patterns with conscious choices. Another example would be, whenever we have a craving for a cigarette, alcohol, sugar, etc., observe that feeling for a moment before giving into it. This doesn’t mean that we have to struggle with our habits, judge ourself or live in a duality state of good versus bad. It simply means that becoming aware can open the gateway to spontaneously letting the decision over our action come from an inspired and tuned in source, rather then conditioning. This witness consciousness and detachment from thoughts is the essence of Yoga.
Social media and television
Excessive use of social media greatly enforces our identification with our Face(book) and Ego. Do you know that feeling when a post gets many likes and positive comments? I defenitly do. It somehow gives us an ego boost that tends to initially feel good. But the more we get entangled in this way of seeking satisfaction, the more we become a slave to our Ego and we will see ourselves as seperate from the source and others. And one day, sooner or later, our face will get wrinkled, will lose its youthly glow, or may get scared. So, making our happiness depends on our Face(book) is a guarantee for suffering, even though it may at first feel really good. Of course, social media can be useful in its own regard. Personally, I rarely look at a television screen, as I am blessed to be living in a place where there is no television around for at least a few hundred metres. But whenever I look at a TV-screen, there is a very good chance that the message will be one of fear (war, Covid, fires, murder,..), covered up with the final good news about football. It may be usefull to know as well about the ‘dark’ side of planetary existence. But if we don’t activily do something about it, what is the point of vibrating on the vibration of fear, rather then inviting peace and harmony inside? Because only when we feel connected to the source and live in peace, can our actions truly be inspired and beneficial.
Competition versus collaboration
As children, we all started to distinguish ourselves from others. This seperation seems somehow to be an essential element to evolution. To be successfull in business, or in our carreer, we all somehow learn to distinguish ourselves from others and show others how our services are superior to those of others. This behaviour can help us climb up in professional life and give us name, fame and wealth. But the more we identify with our name, fame and wealth, the more we have to continously fight with our environment, others and ourselves. Biologists like Darwin used to emphesize the importance of the survival of the fittest, and the natural selection in which only the strongest will survive. This way of thinking has penetrated into every aspect of our society. But there is another way, the way of collaboration. Any culture or tribe that lives in harmony with nature will express themselves more through collaborative behaviour, rather then competition alone. The same can be observed in a forest; trees have way more symbiotic relations with other plants and micro-organisms then they do fight off each other. So, what if we learn to open up to each other in trust, knowing that abundance is not achieved through fighting, but through a truly inspired mind, that is connected to the source within.
There is a natural gravity that pulls us back to the source. Whenever we see ourselves in an uninspired or depressed state, we can ask ourselves what made us feel cut of from the source. Then, we can start to invite healthy habits into our lives and each moment remember the sacredness of our being. This sacredness is not just a mental concept, it is awareness itself. Every breath and step we take from awareness, tunes us naturally in with the forces of nature, cosmic intelligence, and helps us recognize our true essence. The source is not achieved in the future when you have done this and that course. The source is here and now! This is for me the beauty and essence of Yoga. Welcome home!