Looking Deeply Within

As uncertainty continues to haunt many within my yoga community, on this day, which is Mardi Gras - following Maha Shivaratri, The Great Night of Shiva - I begin to turn my attention to the coming season of Lent...

When I used to teach theology, I used to tell my students that Lent wasn't a time so much for giving up things - like sweets or watching TV - but that it is instead, a time to acquire something. It is a time for interior growth and a time to cultivate a quality you would like to more deeply embody...

So today, I take a moment to reflect and prepare, by doing an "Examination of Consciousness," by engaging in a simple practice popularized by St Ignatius of Loyola, and here simplified by Jim Manney, from The Prayer that Changes Everything:

The Examination of Consciousness

Ask for light.
I want to look at my day with God's eyes, not merely my own.

Give thanks.
The day I have just lived is a gift from God.
Be grateful for it.

Review the day.
I carefully look back on the day just completed,
being guided by the Holy Spirit.

Face your shortcomings.
I face up to what is wrong - in my life and in me.

Look toward the day to come.
I ask where I need God in the day to come.

And while this is normally a practice to be done at the end of the day, I find it appropriate to consider it now, in this moment, almost two and half weeks after my Anusara yoga community was split apart.

Why? For these reasons...

I realize that I have failed, and I have contributed to some of the misunderstandings, miscommunications, and so forth that have engulfed us individually and collectively as a community...

I realize that I have misjudged others and misinterpreted information...

I realize I have been less than charitable at times and have contributed to fueling flames...

I realize that this situation is holding up a mirror to where I need to do some work...

I realize that I am not without fault in much of what continues to happen...

I realize that every time I think something or someone is a certain way - it is quickly dispelled or overturned... I am far from "all-knowing..."

I realize I have not truly been compassionate or forgiving...

I realize I haven't really and totally let go...

And I realize - that I must let go - and let God...

Today, on several occasions - I witnessed members in my community I hardly know - or did not care to know - open their hearts. I misjudged what was there, and for that I am wrong, and deeply sorry...

Today, I also experienced unconditional love from sources I did not expect...

I choose to enter into this season of deep cleansing, of healing, of transformation and growth culminating in Resurrection with compassion for myself and others - for our failings and our shortcomings...

What will be, will be... Yes, that is true. But we can choose how we will be, in all of it...

Comments

Doug said…
great lesson...thanks for sharing it!

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