Searching for Peace
“To be or not to be. That is the question…”
Shakespeare couldn’t have said it any better.
Lately that is where I find myself, at a crossroad between the external realm and all its demands ( business, work, social life, community involvement, etc) with the practices that keep me sane( yoga, mindfulness, exercise, stillness, nature, routine, etc). And trying to find the balance between these two worlds.
It’s quite easy to be “blissed out” when you’ve got the time to practice, but what about when there’s so much to do, the thought of sitting still just makes you anxious!
How? In the midst of all the busy-ness and having to get things done, can we maintain our peace of mind and physical well being?
The other night on our monthly full moon hike, my friend Christine Petit led us through a silent mindfulness meditation walk. I was really looking forward to it because my life these days have been pretty non stop( I’m sure I’m not the only one). That particular evening, I was on the search for silence, nature, and peace.
Well, when we started our walk, let me tell you! It wasn’t easy. My mind was racing with thoughts and I was feeling quite anxious about having to walk so slow. To be honest, quite frustrated. I wasn’t used to walking at a slower pace. And these days with trying to get things, done. In the back of my mind, I think I just wanted to get through it!Like everything else! So, I sat with what was presenting itself and I walked on staying connected with my breath and each step that I took. *A step most of the day that I may take for granted.
About 20 minutes later, I felt a shift! My breath became easy and I felt a lightness all over my being. It was as if I forgot I was walking. I was completely absorbed in the moment and wasn’t doing anything, but just being.
I awoke the next day fully refreshed and with a new perspective on life!
This walk definitely inspired me once again to slow down and let things “just be”. Life isn’t always about trying to get anywhere, but more about being fully engaged and present with what’s in front of you, in that moment. Our culture is so goal oriented, that we may constantly feel like we have something that we must accomplish. It’s almost as if we are always waiting for something to happen, when its already happening!
How to find Peace
*The next time you are going about your day, take a moment to check in with yourself. Are you rushing about trying to just get things done? And is there any way that you can give your full attention to the current activity at hand? This alone might be enough to fully nourish you and get you out of your busy mind. When we are fully focused on one object or activity we become so absorbed with it, we become one with it. This is called Dharana ( concentration) One of the 8 Limbs of Yoga.
*It’s also important to maintain your daily routine (exercise, tea in the morning, daily abhyangha, etc) and be consistent, and do it well. This will keep you grounded and centered, even a midst all the chaos that might be surrounding you.
*Remember to take a moment to s~l~o~w down and b~r~e~a~t~h~e. Our breath is a reflection of our mind state and it is directly linked to our nervous system. Yogi’s understand that if they want to calm the mind, first calm the breath!
So, to be or not to be: I choose to be!
Cuz’ that’s the only way to peace!
May we all be at Peace