The moment is all that exists. This is one of the most essential points of my Yoga practice. I have been practicing Sahaja Yoga for over a decade. Many ask me how it helps. I tell them about the love, the child like joy, the inner satisfaction, the empowered feeling that comes with practicing Sahaja Yoga. The instant that we go thoughtless, it brings us into the moment. Many find the idea of being thoughtless difficult. I understand them. My guru Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi who is the Founder of Sahaja Yoga calls the transition “The actualization of self realization.” So it is not something to be understood through a mental process but more like a state, to be in.
Why am I talking about this?
I sometimes observe sorrow around my circles. Having this knowledge, one wants to share of course. To be Joyful is, to be in the moment. The ability to detach from whatever is clouding one’s mind and to be in the moment is a great blessing. Problems are always there. I never heard of anyone who does not have them. How to deal with them is what matters. These are some of the interesting moments that I experienced lately. I was able to feel in the moment and detached from the rest of my life.
The Man with a Big heart
The other day a man was featured on the local news. They gave him an award, as he had been taking care of his disabled wife, who could not function below the waist. One of her arms would not move either. He had been taking care of her for 16 years. She said, that he had not been impatient or harsh with her for one moment, had he been harsh she could not have endured to live. The man’s daughter got Leukemia and he started looking after her too. He was the sole bread earner, doing all the house chores and taking care of his sick wife and daughter with love and compassion. One could feel the love he had for the family while they were interviewing him. He said, “No one would be surprised if a wife took care of her husband till death, I do not understand why people, judge me for doing house chores. I love my family.”
I felt touched by the love; he was capable of giving in the most selfless manner. Although one would think that he has a good reason to be sad, there was no sorrow in this man’s eyes, only love and compassion.
So perception changes everything. He did not believe that he had much reason to be sad. He seemed glad to be the help that he was, for his family. His selfless attitude could single handedly re-establish one’s faith in mankind.
The Bitter Sisters
I see sorrow in the eyes of some around me. It makes me want to dissolve the grief, instantly. I do not posses that kind of power. I can only try to cheer one up and maybe give them love. The strange part is that those in grief seem to have a good life. Health, nice family, financial stability, yet the pain in their eyes’ looks real. At times that the pain is disguised, it seems to manifest with bitter remarks. Actually my attempt to help them get to a joyful state brings out their desire to pull me down. They are insulted, and eager to show me what a terrible place the world is. They start the ‘ugly world’ demonstration by pointing out things in my life that I should feel bad about.
One cannot expect those who do not love themselves, to love others. An almost annoyingly bitter, personality that likes to pick on others comes out of this situation. Frankly, when up against that harassing type of behavior, I react. Then again, I realize that these sour people have to live with themselves and that must be the worst punishment. Their soreness is their warden. If only they managed to break out of that state, they would be able to enjoy the simple things in life, such as a simple good cup of coffee. Feeling love and sharing it, caring for others, enables one to be in the moment.
The Construction Worker and My Magical Coffee Maker
The other day as I walked away from such bitter people I came home and made myself a nice cappuccino with my espresso maker that I would like to believe has magic. (See photo) The miraculous attribute of this particular espresso maker is that, it makes me very happy, each time; I make myself some coffee with it. Would other coffee makers do the same?
No, I like this one and I am sticking with the explanation that it has some kind of magic.
It is when we stop believing in miracles and magic, that bitterness starts gradually taking us over.
So the other day, after I had some magical moments of day dreaming with my beloved cup of cappuccino, I left to go to the swimming pool. It was a bright sunny day. I was walking by the shore before arriving to the pool and suddenly rain started pouring down, like buckets of water at a time. Before I could take cover anywhere I was soaking wet. My dress was completely drenched and water was dripping down my face. Thank God, I was not wearing any make up. Some gentleman appeared out of nowhere and offered his umbrella, for me to hide under. It was too late. I was already completely wet. Standing would only make me feel cold. So I kept walking and enjoying the freedom to be messy like a child. Then I saw a construction worker lifting something heavy in that awful rain. I felt bad for him, and I kindly smiled. Of course I had forgotten what a mess; I was at the moment, totally soaked to the skin. The construction workers response was pausing for a moment and looking at my drenched outlook then he bursted out a very loud laugh at me. I must admit that I did look funny. My previously elegant cotton dress looked like a sack saturated by water.
Nature has a beautiful way of reminding us that we are all one.
In about fifteen minutes the rain slowed down. I went into a coffee shop and changed into a dry dress and a cardigan. What are the odds of having spare clothes with me?
I like fresh clothes after each shower so I had them with me for after sports. This is the sane explanation. The other one is that my magical coffee moment made me happy, therefore prepared for the mysterious events of the unseen future.
Yes! I know, I have access to the weather channel too. I love my fairy assessment of events, what can I say.
The Big Man
So on this rainy day I could not swim but a few days later I was swimming at my Gym’s pool which is not very big. Usually not many people swim at the same time so it does not bother anyone that it is not vast. On this particular day however a few of us were swimming at the same time. I do not clock, my laps, but like to measure the overall time I spend swimming. So I am not at all competitive about swimming or anything else really. On this day that we were all crammed in the small pool doing laps, I found myself swimming at the same pace with a very, very big man next to me. After a while I found myself secretly competing with him. I do not know what had gotten into me, the man was almost twice my size but like a cartoon character there I was on my secret quest.
It all went well, until he noticed. I do not know how he even realized. From under his arm he gave me this amused look with a smile and took a giant leap forward, I was left behind trying to stabilize from the wave he had created, as the pool is small. Now I really felt like a cartoon character. I do no know why these last few days I am ending up almost drowning under lots of water, looking funny. The big man kept giving me amused glances. Of course I completely ignored him, for he had not only discovered my secret competition but defeated me with a single move, and a smile that mocked me. Milan Kundera calls this situation “Litost” I think, or if I slapped the guy, yet loved him it would have been “Litost”.
Of course I did not take the whole thing serious at all but the moral of this story is that I always swim with the great pleasure. The moment I found my self competing with someone, other than myself, it pulled me out of being in the moment, into the moment of ridicule.
Comparisons, rivalry are just silly things that keep us from feeling satisfied with the present moment. One can improve without trying to keep up with anyone or even realizing anyone.
Most of us have our big desires but in the meantime, everyday small things also happen. Some choose to completely disregard the small moments as the are focused on a goal or busy being concerned on what they have or do not have. Not letting those moments slip makes all the difference on the quality of life and outlines the perception of one’s life. Thus a man with many troubles can look happier than a woman who seems to have it all.
Once we know how to appreciate, Divine presents us with so many special instants. When we add those moments up, that is our life.
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