A few months ago, I used a fancy GPS system. I was skeptical and afraid of getting lost. If I trusted this device and still got lost, would I lose faith in trust itself? What would I lose in the process of getting lost? I decided to hang in there the first couple hours and follow what the GPS told me, until I decided to test it. I took a wrong turn, and I was magically re-routed! I tested it some more and we developed a solid dialogue with one another. I love GPS!
This gets to the heart of what non-dualism means in seeing the world holistically; its challenges, and its ease. In yoga, we can be sthira (stable, strong) and sukhum (flexible, playful) at the same time, instead of pitting strength and flexibility, effort and happiness against one another.
We All Get a Little Lost
We can apply this to all aspects of our lives; for instance, how do we forgive when we are hurt? How do we balance strength and flexibility in the poses? How do we stand bravely but with heart?
Einstein says, “The rational mind is a faithful servant. The intuitive mind is a sacred gift. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” Even Einstein says we need to tap into both our intuitive and rational mind at the same time. One is not better than the other.
We can apply this same principle when we get lost. We ALL get lost sometimes. We lose track of where we are in our lives. We forget why we are doing the things we do. Those of us practicing yoga, meditation, mindfulness — we are seekers. We see we are lost and want to be found. We don't punish or judge ourselves when we get lost, we simply do the work for reconnecting to who we really are.
The thing is…we are born awake. First thing we do when we enter the world is yell out and take a look around. But as we go through life, we add so many layers on the outside that we lose sense of who we are underneath all the layers and packaging. And if we can no longer see outside ourselves, this will also make it difficult for others to really see us either.
It’s kind of like finding the car keys you lost: They were there all along. We simply forgot where we put them. Yogically this “waking up” is referred to as Shaktipat. Traditionally, this wake up call can come in a number of different ways:
- Being in contact with an enlightened person
- Spontaneous occurrence
- Experiencing some grand natural event
- A major life happening
This coming awake is also known as the 'Awakening Principle.' It incorporates anything that wakes us up to really knowing who we are underneath all the "packaging." Then, we are able to see the world as it really is.
You see, being lost is not bad. It is just part of the whole spectrum of who we are. Perfectly imperfect, and simply amazing human beings! So take time on the mat to find your own balance: more ease, more playfulness, more discipline, more strength….find all of it. Love yourself, love your day, love your life!