Here in New England we’ve had a lot of rain over the past two weeks that has broken meteorological records and submerged roads, houses, and caused bridges to crumble under its mighty force.
In my yoga studio, I have an automatic sump pump installed and since the rain started falling it has been working overtime.
Usually it switches on for a minute and is a gentle soothing trickle, however the last few days have poured a lot of water from the sky and the pump was quite audible on several occasions.
Most of my students have been attending classes at my studio for months and even years and have learned to filter out distractions and focus on the peace within. Their peaceful composure and ability to stay “in the Flow” is a credit to their dedication to practicing all the aspects of TriYoga.
This week though, I was reminded about an incident that occurred about ten years ago. I attended a workshop held by another teacher and at the end of the session one attendee complained to the instructor about the noise in the next room; the footsteps, the doors opening and closing, and the conversations.
To me the noise was very minor and no more distracting than cars outside in the street, planes flying overhead, and the chirping of birds in the trees.
In rented space it is often challenging to have the perfect environment which is one reason why I created my own studio, but few things in life are ever truly perfect.
Perfection lies within.
Anyway, the attendee who was complaining did not see that the problem lay within their very own self, rather than externally. As yogi’s we learn to live in the world free from distractions and to maintain single-pointed focus.
Which brings me back to this week.
I was delighted that my students were able to filter the external noise; some students even thought it was soothing and a deliberate choice on my behalf to enhance the water element theme of the class!
However it was a particular comment by one student, and echoed by the class, that I want to share with you.
Remember, there has been and still is a major amount of flooding throughout New England and residents (including my students) have had boilers, washing machines, computers, and basements ruined, to name but a few items and have spent hours salvaging what they can.
At the end of class, one student said:
“Thank you Margaret, for having the sump pump and giving us a warm dry studio that we can come to, to practice our yoga. We need to be here.”
That was such a wonderful thing to say and a reflection on the inner peace and transformation that is possible for all of us, despite our own problems and the difficulties that we see around us.
Practicing gratitude, following the peace within, and focusing on what is good and beautiful and right with the world rather than what is wrong and being unhappy enables each one of us to remain strong and be a force of light when problems do occur.
Gratitude remains a powerful tool to remain contented and happy. If you are new to the practice of meditation you will discover that it will help realign yourself with light and love and relinquish the hold of emotional irritation, unhappiness and even anger.
It does not mean looking at the world through-rose-colored glasses, but about releasing fear, fault-finding, and doubt.
Instead of looking at a rose and focusing on the thorns, be grateful that thorns have roses.
See this earlier posting on How To Meditate
Sitting in a comfortable position, allow the eyes to gently close.
Slowly inhale, filling your lungs completely with air.
And continue, slowing the breath down.
Follow the breath from the tip of the nose to the base of the lungs, and slowly release the air.
Draw the navel in with each exhalation to assist with removing the impurities that are carried with the breath.
Release attachment to thoughts and emotions, focusing on your breath.
Continue as you allow the body to relax and the mind to be quiet and still.
Draw light in a column through the body in front of the spine.
Exhale, and see yourself surrounded by the light.
Continue for 5 slow and steady breaths.
Now, with each inhalation draw awareness to the heart center.
See light emanate from this sacred space.
As you exhale, allow the light to cleanse you and remove impurities, both physical and subtle.
Feel yourself glowing with the pure light that both fills you and surrounds you.
See the light flow effortlessly from your heart center.
Bathe in the light, feel it cleanse and renew you.
SAY WHAT YOU ARE GRATEFUL FOR
In the beginning it may be challenging but like all things, with practice it get SO MUCH EASIER and you find that you have zero problems finding subjects to be genuinely grateful for.
Continue to bathe in the light. Feel the warm embrace of peace and light.
When you feel that your meditation session is over, slowly allow your eyes to open.
Demonstrate gratitude through prayers, through acts of kindness, and by monitoring your thoughts and subsequent actions to ensure that you are truly thoughtful with every word and action.
No matter how you say it, giving thanks and showing your gratitude is a positive emotion that unlocks the fullness of your energy.
As opportunities open themselves up to you, you will be able to recognize them and act upon them. You have the power to influence your thoughts.
Meditation is often described as a mirror to your Self, revealing to yourself the reality of how you are really doing in living your life with purpose. You will know that all is well when peace flows through you and stays with you for longer periods until your whole life is peaceful.
Think gratitude, give gratitude, receive thanks and love.