Monday, April 23, 2012

Cultivating the Opposite

I had such a wonderful weekend - a yoga weekend. After two full days of yoga therapeutics training, I taught my Sunday night class. I felt so open and sharing and loving. The idea of helping others, of course, brings such joy. For some reason, within one day, I found myself angry and frustrated. I easily found reasons to be upset at work and at home - distracted by how things "should be" or "could be." I am consistently amazed at how quickly our minds can change our mood within a short span of hours.

I have come to believe that our minds sabotage our work. At the end of the day, I know that I have to work, not assume that I can change without work. After days like today, I come back to Sutra II.33, "Upon being harassed by negative thoughts, one should cultivate counteracting thoughts." I understand that it is ok to be angry and it is good to be with my feelings. I feel, however, that these feelings are not helping me. After being with my feelings, I know that I also have to cultivate the opposite (pratipaksa bhavanam).

I was particularly bothered by the words and actions of a few people. I have to realize that while no one is perfect, we are all made of the same piece of perfection. My work - looking beyond the surface level, what I can see, and instead think of what is common and perfect about all of us.

I will think of the following to overcome this:

          svasti prajabhyah paripalayantam
          nyayena margena mahim mahisah
          gobrahmanebhyah subhamastu nityam
          lokasamasta sukhino bhavantu

"May all of humankind be happy and well. May the great noble lords protect the earth in every way by the path of just virtue. May there be perpetual joy for those who know the real nature of things. May al the worlds be happy."

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