Arms Out Stretched
Published on March 18, 2009
Yoga Sutra #45, Book II:
By total surrender to God, samadhi is attained.
Isvara pranidhanam is a life of dedication, of offering everything to the Lord or humanity. Why do I add humanity? When we want to offer something to God, where and who is He/She/It? Is God sitting somewhere waiting for us to give Him something? God made the world out of Himself. The world itself is God. All that is outside us is God. When we dedicate our lives to the benefit of humanity, we have dedicated ourselves to God. Whatever we do can easily be transformed into worship by our attitude. We can do anything and everything as long as we do it with the idea of serving the world at large. We can serve our tables, our chairs and everything around us. If we don’t pull chairs mercilessly from one corner to another, we are serving them. If we drag them, they cry. Anything handled roughly will feel pain. There should be a gentle, Yogic touch with everything–even our spoons, forks, plates.
from The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
-translation & commentary by Sri Swami Satchidananda (pages 149-150)
“Now begins the practice of Yoga.” Remember that?!?! I used to say it all the time. I still do, but lately my life has been so nutty, that I let my Yoga practice slip from me. I let all my good habits slip from me. I stopped taking care of me, and instead, just been going through the motions of existing. Even blogging, something that I feel helps keep my sanity and creativity thriving, I’ve neglected. But slowly, in the last few weeks, I’ve awaken and taken control again. Control of the things I can control…like my Yoga practice, what I eat, when I sleep, what I do to nourish my spirit. But the greatest lesson I have been needing to learn again and again lately is to surrender. Total surrender.
Total surrender means accepting the not-so-pleasant aspects of life. Total surrender is understanding that what I do during these times is also Yoga, also relevant to me, as well as the world on a whole. Total surrender is realizing that these moments when I want to give up the most, is when surrendering actually requires the most strength of all. Strength to release control while at the same time grabbing hold of the things in my life that I can control….such as my attitude.
Giving up is not surrendering. I recently gave up. Just didn’t want to do it anymore. You know—life, Yoga, taking care of myself, even power juicing!
Surrendering is an action. A motion into the Universe. An act that takes great courage.
I haven’t figured it out just yet. But each day, I try to surrender just a little bit more. Instead of worrying, I make an action of surrender to release those thoughts and just let the situation be. Yeah, can you imagine that? Next time you find yourself worrying….surrender to the now…let go of those thoughts or at least treat them with a gentle, Yogic touch…and then observe how everything at that moment is actually ok. Maybe even better then ok, if you start counting your blessings in replacement of worry.
Peace & Love.