In the Yoga Sutras, Pantanjali reminds us that ignorance (avidya) is the root cause of all suffering. In Light On The Yoga Sutras, B.K.S Iyengar identifies the seven states of ignorance:
1. smallness, feebleness, insignificance, inferiority, meanness
2. unsteadiness, fickleness, mutability
3. living with pains, afflictions, misery, agony
4. living with the association of pain
5. mistaking the perishable body for the Self
6. creating conditions for undergoing sorrow
7. believing that union with the soul (yoga) is impossible, and acting as though that were so
As I continue to work with women through my yoga classes and workshops, I see a common thread… A feeling of inadequacy. Whether it came from messages in our childhood, culture, or workplace, many of us learned to put others first, to stuff feelings internally, to compare ourselves to others. Think about the messages you may have or continue to receive: You are selfish if (fill in the blank), Who do you think you are if (fill in the blank), Why can’t you be like so and so?…
How much time, on average, do you devote to yourself on a daily basis? The two minutes it takes to brush your teeth? The 20 minute car ride into work? The 40 minutes during your child’s soccer/hockey practice as you converse with other parents on the sideline? The 1 hour 20 minutes for your yoga class if the kids aren’t off on Spring Break or a work deadline isn’t due?
Yoga provides a wonderful opportunity for me to see where the imbalances lie in my life. On my mat, I have countless opportunities to observe, without judgment, my thoughts, breath, and sensations. I witness, firsthand, when I overextend myself (stuck in past conditioning) or when I am not reaching my true potential (concerned or fearful of what has yet to come). While I can appreciate not everyone having the luxury of owning their own studio, taking time out of our day for ourselves is critical to personal growth and freedom. It provides each of us an opportunity to cultivate an awareness of what keeps us stuck, what continues to create suffering in our lives and what we can do to overcome these obstacles.
Take the challenge: Take 20 minutes out of every day just for YOU for the next seven days. Close the door to your bedroom if you have to. Journal, take a bath, take a walk. Come back and share your experience in the comment section below to be entered into a drawing to win some delightful Strawberry Hedgehog goodies.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are Powerful beyond measure.
It is our Light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves.
“Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?”
Actually, who are NOT to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not save the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so small
style=”" class=”MsoNormal” align=”center”>That other people won’t feel insecure around you
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to manifest the glory of God that iswithin us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
Have a beautiful weekend. I look forward to your sharing