An Invitation to Letting Go

I find a moment to steal away to the river less than an hour before dusk. My heart has wanted to come here all day, to ponder and reflect...

It is cold and a bit windy, and I sit by the rocks in my boots before I wade in by the launch site...

I want to go into the water and feel the comfort and familiarity of the river's embrace - but it is not meant to be today. But just sitting by its banks for a few moments is enough. I am able to sit - and just simply breathe...

I breathe in the air - I breathe in prana - I breathe in the very essence and spirit of God...

I reflect on unexpected news received yesterday that will alter how I practice for the next two months, eliminating even some of the most basic poses. For the first time I have to experience letting go of all that I had taken for granted - the most mundane and fundamental poses. Yet this is nothing in comparison to other news I receive on this day, of a dear friend and musician suffering a major stroke...

I wake up and decide to go to a beginner's yoga class taught by a friend who is also a yoga therapist, and listen intently to all that she strongly advises me I should not do in my practice: no Dog Pose, no Uttanasana or standing forward bends of any kind - basically nothing where my head is below my heart...And all along I was thinking that I would only have to eliminate poses like headstand and handstand, and pincha mayurasana! Both this friend and my teacher emphasize how this is an opportunity to work with other things - and with some poses much more deeply...

My friend's theme is is "letting go" - which she poses as an invitation to her students. There are so many opportunities waiting for us when we let go...

I sit in class, absorbing everything in, and practicing with a beginner's mind, alongside beginners, having to forgo even doing a child's pose...

This year has been all about letting go, and I realize the lessons are not nearly over. There is always another layer to be unpeeled - revealing deeper and deeper ones nestled within...

There is so much we need to let go of to realize our true purpose in life - which is to recognize and embody our connection to the Divine. Yet it is not an easy lesson to lean...

I think of Yogananda, who wisely counseled a devotee who wanted to go the Himalayas to find God - to experience God instead in his work, relationships, and in every aspect of his every day life, in addition to devoting himself to meditation. This would be a more proper path - for him - and for most of us...

I cannot deny that on some level my heart is heavy, but on another level it is light. I know that the limitations of my body do not define who I am and will never cage my spirit or divine nature. I feel blessed that I truly believe this, for life could not be endured otherwise...

I step into the river and connect with its essence, and for a brief moment, we are one...

Comments

Rachel said…
The words, "there is so much we need to let go of to realize our true purpose in life" speak to me. Your letting go blog was a gentle reminder from the Universe at a perfect time for me :)
Thank you again for inspiring me!
Olga Rasmussen said…
It is a lesson that keeps coming up for me - and so many over and over again. Blessings on you!

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