Open your eyes to the Earth and the Sky, close them now. Do you still see the magic between the two? And feel that smile of the inner joy?
I loved standing at the center of this labyrinth, as if a journey inward & then looking outward. If you could get a wider view, right behind me you would see the Golden Gate Bridge over the San Francisco Bay. This photo was an unplanned surprise. While a couple of other visitors and I enjoyed walking the labyrinth, my husband decided to hike up a nearby hill and take some pictures.
Little did I know that this picture would become the cover photo of my first article published in a magazine. Getting an email from the editor saying that my article was live on the India Currents magazine site was as novel an experience as beginning to publish on WordPress exactly 5 years ago. Yes that’s right it is 5 year anniversary of my blog today!
I soaked up the feeling of being published, it was like crossing a threshold for me. I was writing after a long time, also something that was more than poetry and inspiration. I was writing the personal story of how I happened to develop this relation with poetry and inspiration. I was opening up a lot more, with surprising ease, to a wider world than before. I hope this is a beginning towards more open authentic writing that would serve its purpose, God/Universe willing.
It does feel like a sliver of courage to bring this article for more people to read. I would be honored to have your time on it and perhaps get to know if you have any thoughts for me.
Here’s my article:
Poetry was never something I imagined to become this significant to me, it was not even a sliver of a dream of an unimagined future …read more @ A Poet Born Through Healing
These delicate stalks peeking out from a gap in a fence as if called out to me. As I stood there for seemingly long, in admiration of the beauty and contrast, a lot was being said to me. I listened in.
This was more than a week ago, when I went on a last long walk around my neighborhood, before we went into shelter in place to stay safe from Covid19.
These are uncertain times of many unknowns. Everything is so transient, all that we cling to as normal and accepted, and also all that we are wishing away. The air today seems filled with gloom, a shift from a fast moving energy of chaos and confusion in previous days. Just like every big shift that shakes the ground of reality we walk on, we hope that this is temporary before everything goes back to normal soon.
There are many including myself who are able to relate to the personal and visceral experience of every habitual way of being gotten stripped off of everyday living. It came with different experiences of loss or tremendous change with respect to our health, relations, or finances. We coped, survived and then thrived as we discovered the power of gratitude for what is present, what serves in the moment, acceptance and continual surrender to new normal ways of being and living. Peace, joy and amazing new avenues of life became available unlike ever before.
These are certainly times when we are called to appreciate the luxury and preciousness of every single thing available to us on a day to day basis. This experience of having to go out of the comfort of habit is now a collective experience and not lone parallel journeys in the midst of dominant normalcy in society.
It gives a first hand experience in how much kindness, empathy and compassion make a world of a difference. It is bringing to the forefront how pity, sympathy and indifference hurts the heart, soul and spirit of tremendous courage. It is painful, it is messy, it is calling us to tap into our human resiliency, to trust our hearts, to have faith in a higher power and to peer into the beauty of existence.
Something always finds a way to bloom on the other side of it all. Always. Anchored in this trust, I join the flow of uncertainty into the unknown. I stay present to my capacity and limitations to carry this trust and space of peace in my heart, allowing the waves of all other human emotions to pass through when they do. Wisdom of teachers, their work, my personal practice, support from family and friends is available for me.
New amazing normals emerge, miracles and possibilities await to become evident, lot of our imagined and un-imagined dreams magically come true. They do.
Wishing you health, healing, happiness, joy, ease, gratitude and peace _()_
P.S. I am now offering virtual sessions for breathing, meditation, guidance, listening with confidentiality/witnessing. Complimentary offers available.
Please reach out through http://www.yogasaar.com
There’s a message within me that I am holding on to.
There’s a purpose within me that I am holding on to. There’s an inner reality within me that seeks to pervade the outer world. There’s an outer reality that I am continually attempting to merge with from within.
I still see inner and outer realities separately.
So I know that I am not as mature yet to feel integrated consistently. It is a work in progress on a daily basis to access this integration through my yoga asana, conscious breath, meditation practice, study of the universal principles, time with trusted teachers & noble friends, choosing actions out of deep listening for clarity and intention.
I am often sloppy and imperfect in how I live this.
Any time I have attempted to do any work from a place of want, I have had to cut through the noise of how it should be done. It takes up a lot of energy to clear out the pressures and fears that come with goal oriented choices.
My greatest power to be of value to myself or anyone has been my innocence.
It is those things that I had no idea of What and Why I was doing it, that have given me the most beautiful, joyful, nourishing experiences and expressions of life. I seem to have accepted what was coming or given to me, then aligned and equipped myself to be the best contribution I can be. This holds true for everything from motherhood to blogging.
The illusion of knowing a lot more than ever now takes away my innocence.
It takes away my capacity to accept, explore and live playfully. It makes me take refuge in my comfort zone and resist change. I am now seeking to be more deeply anchored within – from where I find the strength of a mountain and the child like innocence.
I affirm here to listen intently for where I am called and show up consciously.
I lay down to rest all that I think I know and want. I remain present for what needs to come up for the moment, the day, the person, the situation, the project, the intention. A structure arises for me to work with, from what looks like a chaos that overwhelms at times.
It is not about what I want. It is about what wants to Be and Come through me.
It is not about what I want. It is about what wants to Be and Come through me.
Did I go on a long break?
I have been on this unintended and unplanned break from this blog space. Sometimes I thought I knew why I was away and sometimes I wondered why. It feels more like being in response to the Greater Continuum of Life. It is surrender to where and how I am called to be, on a daily basis.
I am so grateful for the loving kind inquiries on my well being and whereabouts. You, my friends from this blog world, are as real a contribution to me as any other. You truly nourish the soil on which I find my ground to be Here.
The beauty of the space I have been in
I found myself letting go of all particular ways of how I spent my time of the day. It led me to venture into new avenues of life and become more consciously present & engaged in the familiar avenues of life. It gave me clarity on exactly how I am a contribution to my relations, my intention, how my purpose is getting shaped. I kept wanting to be back here in time, I had so much to say, yet no urge to write.
My ability to allow life to come to me and follow exactly as guided from within, has deepened more than ever. I finally feel no judgment over what looks productive, or not, in the world out there. The choice of simply Being, living life without the pressure of Doing, is coming more easily to me. I found myself in a profound wave of contemplating, clearly seeing, digesting and integrating all aspects of my life and being, towards a sense of coherence. It is unfolding in incredible ways. It is amazing.
I feel the process of grounding and the blooming of ease & joy alive in me. There is no rushing about this process. It is slow and luxurious. It yields abundantly with the time and space it provides me to grow and just Be.
My first blog post was dated October 5, 2015. All this time seems to be magical and unreal. I entered this space not knowing what blogging meant, what it took and what could be done with it. I simply needed a place to rest the force that was pulsating within. A trusted friend suggested WordPress, dear husband set up this site for me in one day and I posted my first poetry. The name of the blog, the description of About page – all of it came without any thought or plan. I put my fingers to keys and the words simply came. The description on the About page feels so innocent and newly, deeply meaningful to me today, as I celebrate 4 years of being here, on October 5. 2019.
It took a while for this space to change from a scared place to a sacred space for me. The love and understanding I received from interactions here, wrapped around my heart and helped me thrive.
That was a time when poetry had become a living breathing part of me. Poetry doesn’t visit me anymore as of now. Poetry, as if lovingly conveyed to me that it was time for me to visit life in a different role. I had felt a lot of grief when I thought poetry was leaving me. I even wrote a poem named “What if poetry never comes through me again” (https://pragalbhadoshi.wordpress.com/…/what-if-poetry-neve…/). I did write some more poetry after that as the flow trickled to a stop.
I love the richness of this yet another new life that I am living and also look back at my poet self fondly. Poetry knows the perfect time to come through again.
I trust the process
I am in the process of integrating all parts of me into one self and embarking on this training ground for compassion, kindness, love, acceptance and courage to live with the truth of my being. It does take me through difficult bends, unskilled as I am – they are lessons I am supported and guided through.
Comfort is not a requirement, and joy is guaranteed in choosing alignment with universal humanity.
I now allow all different realities of life unfolding into one beautiful, magical, miraculous tapestry of life and its expression waiting to be channeled through me.
I would love to hear your thoughts my dear friends. I will find my way to your work and get to as much as I can. I truly missed you all. I will post next when the inspiration strikes me again! 🙂
Letting go of results does not mean denying the gifts of your labor. It means letting go of the idea of what the result looks like. Goodness comes in ten thousand and different ways. We fixate on having it come a certain way.
Be open to receive what’s coming to you. We shut ourselves off from what is coming to us. We do that with our busyness or often with feelings of unworthiness. Always filling the spaces available to us with ‘doing’ and ‘trying’.
We then go into judgment of self, and rest of the world. That is a sure way to find a million upsetting things in our life. Things, not even in our immediate life, upset us. We go about finding glory in all the suffering we endure in all our pursuits.
There are so many things that need not define our life. There are so many pre-organized structures that don’t really work for us. We seem to think it is comfortable to make ourselves fit into them. We imagine it would be our success to show growth within those structures.
There are some given structures that are nourishing to us. Those that give us certain joys, stability and security. Those are our gifts to receive from, and find our worthiness through them. There are some areas of our personal growths that need the freedom of creation.
Be willing to create, express and offer exactly what you want.There are no barriers in the space that is not restricted by definitions. Most things come to us in ways we haven’t ever thought about them. Don’t lock yourself up in finite ways of achieving things.
Keep your self-reflection with kindness and compassion. Have a willing contribution towards your pursuit. Let go of the idea of how it should be coming to you. Letting go of results does not mean denying the gifts of your labor.
This post is a contribution to ForgivingFridays of ForgivingConnects! You will find this blog very inspiring.
Yesterday while walking along the ocean, the fallen woods called me to play on them and I found myself an experience of the strength and spaciousness of The Warrior. The strength felt is a very subtle inner power.
The warrior may have an ocean of emotions churning within, the warrior allows space for them. The ground the warrior stands on may not be wide or is a shaky one. The warrior has strong grounding through the legs and open arms to receive to the fullest – the breath and from life itself.
Later in the day I found myself contemplating- what does Yoga mean to me?
Yoga is about:
- cultivating positive energy and joy for our daily life.
- dropping the effort and developing the skill and focus for everyday ease.
- building our ability to sustain our productivity and functions for the long term.
The postures and movements may or may not be physically challenging for you. The effort is in the attention to cultivate a long smooth breath, that gives us the ability to be balanced in our body and mind. It helps cleanse the effects of stress and pain, physical and emotional.
The challenge is in maintaining focus of attention where it is required, often true even in our daily life. Yoga trains our mind for that focus, and to meet challenges with clarity & skill.
P.S. This post is a contribution to ForgivingFridays of ForgivingConnects.
I was so conditioned
to not being
But then most company
did not give me
that I can now
find on my own
Note: This is the longest I have gone without posting and I am not on a break from this blog space. I have grown more silent in my heart and mind than ever before. I am enjoying and appreciating the spaces in between everything than ever before. I found myself engaged in some rich experiences & ordinary yet special moments in those spaces. Genuine connection with family, people, nature and self happens in life when we allow these spaces.
I did hit upon phases where I encountered some layers within, of unworthiness and self-judgment for how productive and creative I could be with my life. I appreciate the space that I could create between myself and those painful thoughts. I can let them pass through me. That is how I find another layer underneath, of peace & contentment.
Please check out https://earthfamilia.org/ A noble friend brother Pancho is on a One Earth Family walk. I had the privilege of joining him on some sections of the walk as he crossed our city.
This post is a contribution to ForgivingFridays of ForgivingConnects that models forgiving and self-acceptance as a practice.
A note to my blogger friends & readers:
This could be the last quote image of 2018 from me. I have had so much fun creating these. Check out all my quotes at the Inspiration Gallery that I am so grateful for coming to Be. It is the gift of 2018 to me and my gift to all of you who enjoy it.
Pairing the words that came to me with pictures was like a meditative treasure hunt always. Pictures came from our family vacations and often browsing through sites of my photographer friends Atanu Chakraborty & Vikram Phale, who generously allowed me to use them. None of the collaboration of words and pictures were ever planned. Pictures were taken without agenda and words were gifts of the soul of the Universe. Rare few times the pictures prompted the quotes and other times the words took me on the trail to the right picture.
The first quote image I ever made took me about 8 hours to get the final version right, playing with all the tools, fonts and placements available. I was like a kindergartner getting my alphabets right on the blackboard. So much patience shown with me from my friend Vikram Phale with his coaching to visualize the aesthetic aspects of the images, his honest feedback always, and help in the technical aspects of editing from my husband Manish Doshi. Today’s quote above found a picture and got designed in under an hour with no help 🙂 and I love the feeling of that.
I started this blog with a lot of poetry and occasional articles. I dreamed of making quotes but didn’t think/trust I would be doing them. A blogger friend Josiah Harry of Skylarity gifted me some quote images that he made from my poetry lines that he so preciously picked. Oh the joy and gratitude with which I received his gift of these quote images! (Images created by him are included in the Inspiration Gallery)That gave me the boost of a beginning to create my own, though it took me about an year after.
My quote images seem to have replaced the process of my poetry. Poetry has become a occasional kind visitor to me in my work, some articles, some thoughts, some quotes, some long pauses, that’s how I am flowing in this blog space.
PS : This quote image is a contribution to ForgivingFridays of ForgivingConnects. Choices come with ease when we work with forgiving and acceptance.
Gratitude & Joy are on my mind a lot lately.
My understanding of gratitude and joy, how it has evolved and grown for me, is on my mind a lot lately.
The quality of Gratitude and its power became known to me during the seemingly toughest times of life when I found myself naturally leaning into all that was available for me to depend on – people, basic necessities, nature – every single thing that I was receiving anything from, to help me keep going. Genuine Gratitude swelled from my heart for every perceived blessing, every kind word, every new day, each genuine smile, each laughter that became possible.
Joy was the gift and the jewel that came as the core fragrance of Gratitude. It felt the most amazing to wear on me – something radiated brightly with just Being in this state of Gratitude and Joy.
Then came the awareness that my Gratitude for roles people played in my life was taken for granted and seen as my neediness alone. I wrote a short poem to give this an expression.
On further self exploration, I recognized that deep down I have always felt unworthy and undeserving, having to earn any regard, support from any one else. There was a feeling of indebtedness. I felt obligated to become everything I can for their comfort and be available to pacify any of their struggle. Result was a lack of boundaries, lack of self-compassion and honoring my own needs in favor of what was required of those others who had made any contribution to my life. I had a tendency to disregard any unfairness towards me, constantly justifying it as their humanness.
Eventually I was able to separate my heartfelt gratitude from the feeling of having to give up my true sense of being in return for approval and appreciation. I felt empowered, free and actually very unselfish. I am now available in my best possible ability to be of good service to anyone, when I am truly being myself. No amount of taking on other people’s suffering is going to lessen their’s.
That lead to the awareness of the guilt that permeated the joy available for me. Guilt about how much some other people had not still caught up on the true simple pleasures of life and how they needed to be supported in that. With time I realized, I can honor each person’s journey, feel the tenderness of their suffering but the Gratitude for what is available to each, is their’s to find.
Grief brings us in touch with the core of our being, empathy brings us in touch with the core of humanity.
Each one of us is responsible to use our emotions skillfully and compassionately towards self and others. No matter how many tantrums I threw about the sometimes seemingly treacherous life, I had to live out my own until I was able to choose the right perspectives that led to more Gratitude and Joy. There are so many people that I am grateful for, for showing up to help me keep steering powerfully in the right direction. I just needed to keep the strength to NOT let go of the wheel, and depend completely on others to carry me. The direction I am headed towards comes from within me.
Gratitude is a means and also the gift received through the means. Joy is something that flows through our veins and becomes a natural expression that shows up in relationships and life experiences. There remains no need to stage and create moments of happiness. Joyful moments keep occurring naturally. This happens with looking at some excruciating times of life in the eye – with the eye of Gratitude.
I am finally free to celebrate Gratitude without forever feeling indebted or undeserving of what life offers me through people and opportunities. I am still learning to express joy without the guilt because of how much suffering humans hold within. I share my Joy when moved to do so, in an attempt to inspire more people to move in that direction, share in this pure juice of life and genuinely celebrate life with each other.
This post is a contribution to ForgivingFridays of ForgivingConnects. Debbie Roth’s work on this blog is a wonderful inspiration.