The first post of this series can be read here.
I stayed at a fellow yoga teachers house for a getaway relaxing weekend recently. He is an older teacher, by about twenty years. He was a great host, taking me to all the local spots and treating me.
I noticed something about my mind and emotions over this weekend trip. I was uncomfortable. The thoughts that arose were hazy memories and scenes of my stepfather. A deep discomfort, and hesitation with men, especially when this fellow teacher was showing me kindness by treating me to meals. I felt I had to give something back, that I owed something, and part of me did not want to put myself under the power of another person.
It was always that way with my stepfather. If he gave you something, or did anything he deemed nice, he remembered and held it against you. When I would do something he didn’t like, something he did not want me to do, or sometimes just for no reason at all he would hold these ‘gifts’ against me and try to control me with them. He did it to everyone in his life, friends and family.
I made myself aware of the undercurrents of emotions on this trip, knowing I was not in danger, and releasing each thought with “Wahe Guru”. The experience brought to my attention how uncomfortable and unresolved I am with men, especially older men. My capacity for holding the discomfort also seems to be thin at times. I still feel that fear of displeasing. It is is I am back to being a child again, helpless, unable to escape the every day fear.
These are the classic results of physical, mental and sexual trauma. Iv never had this discomfort with men my own age, though I think I worry too much about pleasing them in romantic relationships.
Giving and gratitude is cyclical. It can wear the face of another, but it is still divine. It still attracts that grace and abundance we all desire. The Universe gives us the gift of life, what can we give back? Sometimes we do not see these kind of traumas as gifts. Yoga is easy (although getting on the mat to do it can be hard at times) because yoga yokes us to the divine, to truth, and our spirit.
The practice of yoga gets past all thinking, all needing to resolve things, and puts us in a place of purity where we can give, move beyond trauma, and heal shadows. Allow and accept the gifts in your life. Take the time to recapture your radiance by dedicating time to your own practice. The time you take is for you, though the people in your life will benefit from it, you do it for yourself.
With this monthly mediation we pray chanting Ardhas Bhaee. Be in the moment of prayer – let go of what you think you need, release your desires. See the grace that is already with you, use mediation to see it.
Thanks to Simrit Kaur for her generous music contribution.[cta id=”4902″]