Understanding Your Dharma
Why am I here? This is probably one of the most commonly asked questions in the world … it seems like such a simple question and yet we all know there are many layers to it. If you listen closely, you know intuitively there is an answer; the difficult part is trusting in this answer. Trust takes time and confidence to cultivate…we are always second guessing and double checking to make sure that what we feel and think is aligned with where we want to go, so that we can take the next step that is right for us. We all want to know what the next step is.
So what is your path, your life’s calling? In India, they refer to this as dharma. Each person has a dharma, and that is his or her obligation and responsibility for this particular life. It IS the reason we are here. It is the deep motivating movement that comes up frequently, the private one we listen to at night with our eyes closed but which we aren’t always quite brave enough to purse. This is your life’s work – an incredibly spiritual calling, no matter what that work is.
Your life path and purpose are also connected to your karma, which are past experiences and where you have gone up until this point. This karma seems to carve out a particular path for us to follow … the path of least resistance. If we can actually follow this path, then we can achieve a level of understanding where we can look back and say “ah, this all makes sense.” Drawing this perception into present life experience, you see that each decision leads us into the next. At the same time, these decisions almost feel predetermined, like we are just playing a role in a larger theatrical play. Potentially then, everything happens for a reason and as it is happening it is our practice to be present and take note.
Sadhana, your particular practice, is the means by which you can connect to your path. Commitment to a practice shows you the way to your dharma by gradually peeling back the layers of intention you communicate to yourself – through your actions, your words, your thoughts, and the general way you exist inside yourself and in the world around you. Within this community of yoga, we do physical postures, breathing and meditation as our practice. Each one of these techniques takes you deeper into the connection of why you are here which propels your forward into your life’s work.
So why yoga as your practice and not something else? It is important to ask the question why. To answer, you must look to what you feel as your intention. Generally in the context of yoga, there is a practice for impermanent gains for physical body or for a relationship. Then there is a form of practice that is for a more spiritual gain and focused upon yourself, so that the work you do is for you, for your own spiritual realization. And within this spiritual motive there arises a practice that is for the sake of others. You get on your mat or sit in meditation for the personal growth of others. One usually comes before the next; generally we must become selfish before we become selfless. This is a natural progression. The practice that you do, whatever it is, is what helps you to weed out and let go of that which is unethical or ego driven. When the distraction of the ego weakens we begin to see clearly the true reason we are here. It is a continuous cycle of letting go and realigning with our purpose, over and over again. The practice enhances and develops that which is grounded into the whole reason why you are here. In this sense, it doesn’t really matter so much why you are doing your practice – there is no right or wrong. But it is important to identify what the reason is, as this provides the fuel for your practice so that you can move forward on your path of realization and understanding.
Have a Blessed Weekend
Love & Light
The Spirit Way