The yogic spiritual path is really no different in a lot of ways to those on any other path. Stuff still happens, life goes on. Its the orientation to what happens and how you meet those things that is the difference.
People are prone to saying: “Oh, but you meditate. You should be so calm, never angry”. Well get this people – that state of calm that everyone imagines all people who meditate should have… isn’t that simple! That “everything’s zen” persona many people like to portray is usually bogus. Unless its not, in rare cases.
When I first jumped on this path some time ago now, I had this idea that having that floaty, happy calm feeling was the goal. That if I can induce that state (easy when around some of the great masters), then I was on the way. 😉
But guess what? This state, this sattvic (balanced) way of being can only be stablised 24/7 after a great deal of journeying – in some cases a life time. But always at least a good 10-20 years worth of practice for most people.
In the mean time, those moments where we experience that state (or something we imagine is that state) are precious and inspire us onwards. But then life gets in the way and we’re back at square 1!!
Not to mention, that sadhakas (spiritual practitioners) can and do undergo depression, sadness, anger and every other human emotion – in the process of purifying their karmas. However, the practices learned are meant to be applied to these states so that each time you do find yourself at square 1, its really not quite the same place. Instead of simply being reactive, there’s a process in place.
Remember this – its the birthright of every human being to eventually achieve enlightenment, even if its not in this lifetime.
And now to discuss “losing, letting go and surrender”. Yes I seem to lose a lot of stuff. My lunch – going from the bakery to my car. $15 in change whilst at a cafe. A button off a new top, a day after I thought I’d lost a button but really hadn’t. A prize of 4 movie tickets that I was awarded at my last job (whilst still in the building), between where the party was held and walking back to my desk. All crazy stuff right?
Over the years I’ve lost quite a few things I’ve had attachment to – great relationships, friends, pieces I jewelery I adored. And I have driven myself nuts fretting over those losses.
Then there’s my recent loss of pretty much everything that represented the “form” of my life. Those material things we all identify with. Kinda different to losing ‘stuff’ but not completely.
Right now as always, my spiritual path seems to be addressing this. Sometimes we just have to learn to relax and let go – surrender. Actually, its a little bit more like “struggle, struggle… surrender”.
OK, so I lost stuff I thought was important, I cared about or just bought/received. Each time I lose stuff now I’m noting my carelessness and how this could have been different if I’d had more considered awareness. And then I let go.
I still wish I hadn’t lost the stuff. But I’m saving myself from going crazy. And in three cases the ‘lost’ stuff I mentioned did eventually turned up. Like my lunch (down a space in my car), my button (inside the front door of my house – how lucky is that?) and my movie ticket prize (honest co-workers). But instead of spending the day thinking about what I’ve lost and draining my energy that way, I’ve thought about the pattern of what has happened. And that if stuff is meant to turn up, it will.
What can I say? It makes my day less stressful. And it makes me more aware of the little actions I take or don’t take.
Then there’s the common experience of struggling with traffic. We all do it. Get impatient, swear, shout, give dirty looks to someone we think is an idiot and shouldn’t be allowed on the road. Hmmm.
I started to notice the more I struggled with traffic, the more I was annoyed or tried to get around someone, the more strung out I was. Now I’m talking a pattern of days, weeks, months. I noticed that whenever I didn’t hold a vested interest in how fast the traffic was moving, things flowed better. Moment-to-moment stress about traffic is counter-productive and takes you away from what is – here I am in a car in traffic. OK. So its still something I have to work at but such a relief when I do just… relax…
Awareness, after all, is not just about meditation. Its about every darn thing in this world.