Loka samastha, sukhino bhavathu (happiness to all living things)
Om shanti shanti shanti (peace, peace, peace)
The Shanti Path (Peace Mantra)
The sun is shinning the sky is blue and the bog (wet lands) are full of bird song. It’s warm and peaceful, a pet of a day. I have three yoga classes to teach today, all of them lovely.
I walk the dogs, watch the pup jump into the clear water of the stream and them shake, sending droplets of water and light through the air around her. I still can’t quite believe my luck that this is my life now. My doubting side feels a bit guilty. It shouldn’t be this easy. I should be doing more. I constantly compare my work day to what it might be, if I was still in the language school I would leave the house at 7:30, instead I’m on my mat at 7:30, doing my own yoga. If I were in the school I might have an hour or less for lunch, and I’d work through until 3:40, or 4 or later or start later and finish at 8pm or sometimes 10pm in the evening. But that is not my life now.
I love teaching yoga teachers. I work some evenings on zoom but I finish at 9:30 and I’m home. I work weekends in the studio but not every weekend. I have a tendency to forget I’ve been working at the weekend and wonder why I’m tired. I have lots to do but most of it is a pleasure. I have a tendency to work too much and get over tired, because, maybe I’m not doing enough, if I love it and its fun, does it count?
I should do more. I grew up believing that working hard and doing more is a virtue. Sometimes I am not comfortable with that level of ease and joy in a world where so many are suffering.
It is not that I have never drunken from that cup of suffering. I know what it is to be very ill. I know what it is to grieve. I know that in those moments others feeling bad for me, did not help me. Some people moved away at those moments because my pain hurt them. Some stayed and tried to underplay their joy, dim their light. But their joy, their ease reminded me what was possible. Be that light.
If I was in a bunker right now I would be imagining a time when I could sit on the couch and have a coffee or go outside for a walk.
Today I am happy. I walk in the sunshine and smile. I hold a space for my students to feel peace. I center myself into joy and peace and write to you from here. I want to hold this space for you, for everyone whoever they are, so that we can all know what peace feels like, what simple joy feels like. Not the unconscious collapsed peace of an exhausted sleep but conscious peace full of colour, and life.
Today I could have written about bombs and refugees or the floods and fires of climate change, but I think you have already heard about them. I choose to focus on birdsong and sunshine and watching my neighbour walk up the field with his pig and his dog and a sense of timeless spring, peace and renewal.
I count my blessings and hold this space and hope that all my words and actions spring from there.
Wishing you peace, light and joy
Wishing everyone peace, light and joy
Resolving to hold a space of peace, ahimsa (non violence) and santosha (contentment) and act from there.
Om shanti, shanti, shanti
Om Peace, peace, peace