Looking Back to Look Ahead

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As we prepare to step into the New Year I felt drawn to revisit my old posts that came at a similar time. It was like visiting the previous versions of me and how the felt sense of life has kept evolving for me, year to year. This year I feel fairly removed from feeling the years as separate blocks of time. The year ahead feels like a continuum, a knowing of how I am going to be changed as a person yet there is no rawness of curiosity in it. I feel focused and open for new directions.

Following post, first posted on Jan 5, 2017. I loved repeating this to myself, so I shed some more layers of confines I place on myself. 

Step into the New …You

It is too long that you stayed in that shell …to keep others comfortable.

There are some around you who have always loved you, with whom you are amazing and it is easy. You feel safe being yourself. Then why walk on eggshells in the rest of the world? Why numb and dumb down the goodness and brightness in you ? Sometimes to the point that you feel like the most ungracious or insensitive person?

Nobody realizes that you are trying to be just the opposite, or simply trying to fit in. You value them too much …more than yourself! They are getting used to that …your misery even. And you are getting comfortable with that. In your mind you are being nice to them …stop …just stop!

They are taking your appreciation and praise, for everything about them, as your weakness, or worse jealousy. When you soar higher than what they perceive you to be (and you are still nowhere in your perception) …what will you take their unappreciation of your journey as? How will you look at their lack of acknowledging of your existence?

Look at those who really ‘see’ you. You seem to do everything right towards them.

Break the shell, crack open …Do what it takes! It’s worth it! They will find others who feed their comfort. Yes, give them the shock …stop hurting so much!

They will have to step up, to be able to understand you and cheer you in your growth. They will have to know the pain you pay as your dues. The grace you are showing as you choose to crack open and take flight.

You in your truthfulness will mourn your perceived loss of some of them, because you truly cared about them. That’s why you kept them comfortable while you suffered being trapped in an unwholesome reality.

Yes, I know you also have done some things wrong to some. Those too will reach out to you or you to them, in your growth. Just that you are not accountable to all of them this very minute, so don’t judge yourself so hard.

Go ahead take that step, a small change, break open, fly. The ones ready for growth will grow with you, or even break some towards their own growth. Some will fall away, as you both cannot see eye to eye now.

Forgive yourself, forgive them, love yourself, love them, allow yourself to Be, allow them to Be. Trust me, trust me, trust me it’s worth it. When you feel stuck and choose to wiggle out, it hurts, it’s worth it.

The ones who care for you and the ones you care for, will have to accept you as you are today. Let them know you want ONE with them, you are one of them. But be stronger on your own path. Some of them Never let go!!

Break out of anything you are keeping yourself in …one step at a time!

Following post, first posted on December 31, 2017. I have picked lines of the poem to share here because I feel exactly the same in a very different way, as I look back to 2018 and head into 2019. Title is linked to full post.

Looking Back in Time & Curious Ahead

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My family at a beach on Kauai island, Hawaii – December 2017

Looking back 2016 had felt like a poetry
It’s rhythm evident towards the end
Miraculous intensities as if waves undulatory

Looking back 2017 feels like chunks of prose
Blocks of emotions riotous, faced to fend
Unbeknownst intensities dealt to come to close

Now I see tremendous success in simply Being
The freedom and liberation is sweet
Without the need to justify with achieving

A lot of life is hidden in the slow living
Follow into the next choice after deep listening

All the voices in my head that created turmoil
Most many of them were not mine

When I decided to do nothing
Exact things happened that meant something

Universe is becoming my family
Soul interactions touching me deeply

And there’s us souls committed to each other
Deemed as Family for this lifetime
We hold hands together in joy and trust
To make it through with our individual soul calling

Each of you dear one who reads
I wish you too a curious & glorious 2018 (now 2019)
May you find a ground steady as you tread
The waves of life with each twist and turn

May we all embrace the beauty with mirth
Of this finite vacation on planet Earth

Following post, first posted on December 31, 2016. Title is linked to the full poem.

Times that become the year

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My family at the Sand Dunes of Death Valley, CA – December 2017

 

I will be on a break from this blogging space for a month from now. If I don’t respond to any of your comments this is why. When I return I will resume my visits to your wonderful works that I am going to be missing 🙂 My heartfelt Gratitude & Love to all of you and this precious virtual space where we often have our most treasured conversations. 

 

 

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Innocence & Its Faces

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Photo Credit: Manish Doshi

Innocence is the face of a baby born
So also that of a person reborn
Each one has faced the struggle
To show up in the world

In their painful journey of birthing & re-birthing
Gut wrenching twisting and turning
Courage and surrender both have shown
To be able to breathe
And cry a cry of relief

That innocence has known survival
Not a scent of the vices of the world
The purity if they wish to retain
The reborn must keep the intent
To be alive & born to new moments
To die to each that has gone by …

We are blessed with many rebirths
In this lifetime alone
As much they make us weep & cry
Smile to welcome each one with joy

 

Note: This poem was first published on Dec. 11, 2015, when I was about 3 months into my blog on WP. The 4 bloggers that read it that time had felt so very precious to me. The poem itself was an emotional experience in response to a curious remark sent my way. Today this poem called me back as if to check in how and if it still fits with me. I felt it natural to share it again with all my new blogger friends.

This post is a contribution to ForgivingFridays on ForgivingConnects, a blog by Debbie Roth who profoundly teaches the art of letting go.

Beauty in Resilience

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Photo Credit: Atanu Chakraborty “Ladakh Old Lady – Hard Labor for Living”

Note: This is a narration of a true personal experience of a profound mental shift, I went through. This was originally posted on Infinite Living on December 2, 2015.

I was standing at the busiest intersection of Mumbai, India, just arrived from US, couple of days ago. It was the end of June and rains were expected anytime, unannounced. I was there waiting for my friend to pick me up, to take me shopping for some rain shoes.

I was much immersed in the experience of being there, soaking in life moving at a fast pace around me. There was a sense of impatience in the atmosphere as there were too many vehicles on the road, to be able to move fast enough. Mixed in, was the sun, moist heat, dust, pollution and the blaring horns from drivers.

I was going to be waiting there for 15 mins, my friend called.

My eyes lingered and then my gaze dropped down on a sight, about a foot by my side. Just inches away from traffic, on the footpath/sidewalk, on a tattered mat, was a mother tending to her newborn …maybe a month or so old. She had the baby on her legs outstretched, no clothes on the baby.

My mind drifted very briefly to some memories of how I had lovingly purchased multiple things to keep my babies in perfect health and comfort. I was again drawn back to the sight in front of me. Words came to my mind-  hygiene, safety, nutrition, sickness – but I was again drawn into the scene.

The cars and people zapped by. But the only thing real for me was the mother taking care of that baby. Perhaps just like the only thing real for the mother was her baby and what she could do for the baby.

Flies were hovering over the baby. The baby was clean. The woman had a rag in her hand and a half filled bottle of water by her. She would sprinkle a few drops of water on the baby and then wipe it off with the rag, every few minutes. It was her way of keeping the baby cool and the flies away. The mother and the baby looked content, and for what it takes, doing ok with each other.

I was filled with love and inspiration for the duo. What endurance and strength they have been born with! What beauty in that the mother making the best use of all that was available to her, to be able to give her baby all that she could!

This experience opened me up to a different reality altogether. The reality of our human arrogance that equates a good life and happiness with wealth and all that it brings.

I remember only 3 years ago when I previously visited Mumbai, I had a very different perception. I used to feel sad and have tears in my eyes as I walked past poverty and people living in tiny made up houses with their kids roaming around naked. I felt happy and also guilty about having a beautiful house and a bountiful life. I assumed they were suffering from poverty. I assumed I was happy and was supposed to be happy because I had all these material comforts.

In the 3 years in between, I went through a profound journey of self-discovery, transformation and renewal. I could now see the world through the eyes of people who have felt like their body has betrayed them completely.

People who have to show up for themselves, each day with tremendous courage to survive, what feels like their own death, day after day.

The ones that go through pain so intense that they have to continually keep tapping into the pulse of life itself to find faith, surrender and the means to help them inch towards the ability to thrive.  

Having a house, the food, the comforts, all become part of gratitude. Body and mind become the primary dwelling and the immediate place of turmoil and suffering.

There is tremendous beauty in the strength and resilience that people show, in showing up each day of their life, to make the best of what they have available to them.

To me this day, there was no difference between this mother and anyone else doing just that. Having a house is not enough. What you choose while living in any kind of house or under the sun is what makes you what you are.

In that baby I saw a beautiful being born with a purpose. One purpose was to open my eyes to this beauty. In the mother I saw a face of pure nurture and love. I felt a renewed faith that we are all very well equipped for where we are placed.

In that mother and baby, and all other contrasts around me, I see no suffering, only beauty, grace and strength!

 

P.S. This post is a contribution to ForgivingFridays on ForgvingConnects. It is in the forgiving non-judgmental perspective of our circumstances is where we find our strength and happiness.

New Beginnings

New Beginnings

Photo Credit : Manish Doshi “Sunrise”

Do you look back and wonder how you survived those times?
Those times that it made no difference whether day or night?

Do you look back and wonder what kept you living?
Those times how come you didn’t imagine dying?

Do you look back and see just how you chose to live?
Those times when it was death of a thousand kind?

Do you now see the brilliance of Life?
New Beginnings as if awakened by a beautiful sunrise?

Don’t ever give up, keep going …
It is a miracle all that is waiting.

 

Related post : Go seek that which is waiting for you!

PS : This post is a contribution to ForgivingFridays of Forgiving Connects.

I am a yoga teacher …actually I am not.

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Photo Credit: Manish Doshi “Be present as you make your way”

Question: What do you do?
My answer: I am a yoga teacher.

Just that I don’t identify with that answer ever.

So what do I do?

My true answer:

I create space for people to rest their thoughts, feelings and emotions, and help them access their own clear voice that leads them to their truth and joyful living.

That is the answer that feels true to my heart. When I begin teaching a class my name, different tags of relations and society, our acquaintance if any, all that disappears. I lead you through an experience that is called yoga practice. I help you tune in with your breath, energy, body and sense of being. We take a dip in the pool of Infinite Living.

The practice helps you get clear in your mind, truly knowing and sensing what is going on within. Your time with me is a safe space to allow all that comes up in your body, mind, and emotion- no judgments. It is designed to help you be attentive and listen in.

I help you build skills to navigate through all that and listen to what your truth is and where your joy is. It is not an hour mind vacation after which you walk back into the same stress you live in. You know something about yourself or your life better than before as a result of your own attention. This happens in a group class too.

Do I continue in this relationship, or walk out? How do I find joy in my continuing relationship? Am I content with my current health status and how my doctor is addressing it? Do I quit my job, or continue? Do my food habits truly nourish me? Does parenting really have to be this difficult? How supported do I feel through these life changes and choices? What do I really want? I am worried, I have depression, anxiety, insomnia …

I facilitate these above experiences for you, as you find your own answers. We vibrate together with the joys and tears of transformation as you find your own relationship with yourself. My utmost contentment is when you need to see me less often, for our private sessions because you are now skilled at finding your clear voice and true choice. Your chronic pain has disappeared, digestion improved, or any other body issue addressed through therapeutic focus of yoga.

We are like lone kayakers in this Infinite ocean of the universe. If we are very present with the life currents, then we are skilled at the navigation. We have but this short and sweet vacation on this beautiful planet. We meet with each other, sometimes in happiness and sometimes in misery. Each one of us has our own path to carve through.

I have been blessed with teachers, with whom I continue to hone my skills. I have been blessed with students with whom I can share this powerful work, so I can pass it on just like I received it.

Teacher, student tags are just our convenience. What I do as work is create safe space for your pain, feelings, emotions – no judgment – so you feel positively empowered, inspired and supported through life and choices.

 

 

P.S. Dear wordpress friends, I apologize for my absence on your work, that are my joy to read. I will visit you soon.

HeartBreak

Heartbreak

Photo Credit: Manish Doshi ‘Sunrise on Kauai’

Sunrise on Kauai – No matter how much the clouds of misperception take over, the true light of the sun manages to appear in all its glory and beauty, as the glowing orange pressed down and the golden lining on the surface. There is no stopping of the brightness leaking on to the cloud right above, in the vicinity, turned all gold and glowing, the beauty of it all is ours to see.

 

P.S. Dear Friends, I have enjoyed the process of creating these picture quotes a lot lately 🙂 This is the first that I am sharing with you here. Let me know what you think, I will keep sharing more.

 

Yoga – My Work & Life

I can Be This & You can Be That

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Photo Credit: Manish Doshi “The Labyrinth”

If I can be this and here
Whatever and wherever you see me
You too can be that and there
Whatever and wherever you want to be

Just ask those who had met me
Before I simply started living and being me
You will know how small and low I lived
Before I let go of the fear of not fitting in

They will tell you how hard it is to believe
Who is this and what really happened
To the one who did not have a clue
To the one, either too dumb or too loud

I only wish to keep being this and here
Centered in this labyrinthine life of desire
Immersed in what feels like flawless space
Living as the energy that happens to have a face

Evidence that you can be this and that and there
Whatever and wherever you want to be …

Related Post : Step into the New …You

Yoga – My Life & Work

This is a contribution to ForgivingFridays of ForgivingConnect, a work of acceptance, awareness and transformation by Debbie Roth.