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Ishvara Pranidhana | Finding the Wisdom to Accept Our Path in Life

Ishvara Pranidhana | Finding the Wisdom to Accept Our Path in Life

Welcome to the tenth and final post of the yama and niyama series. We're finishing things out with such a great tenant, Ishvara Pranidhana, meaning surrender. It feels like all the previous nine tenants have led us up to this final one of surrendering to what life brings our way. Let's get in to what the tenant of Ishvara Pranidhana asks us to bring into our lives.

The text we've been following, The Yamas & Niyamas by Deborah Adele, provides such a fantastic explanation of Ishvara Pranidhana. It states that the tenant of surrender proposes that there is a divine force at work in our lives. This can take on different forms for everyone, whether you attribute this higher being to a god, nature, or just some force, the belief is that this force is greater than we are and cares deeply for us. Surrender invites us to be active participants of our lives, being present and fluid with each moment, while also appreciating the magnitude and mystery of life. Ultimately, this tenant invites us to open our hearts and accept the higher purpose of our being.

Tapas | Staying With Suffering Makes Us More Resilient

Tapas | Staying With Suffering Makes Us More Resilient

Happy Monday, and welcome back to the eighth week of the yamas and niyamas series. This week, we're featuring Tapas, and no, it's not the amazingly delicious hors d’oeuvres you get at a Spanish restaurant. No, Tapas in its literal translation from Sanskrit means heat; however, it can also be thought of as self-discipline, change, or transformation. 

In order to create change and transformation within ourselves and our lives, we need to build heat through self-discipline in order to burn away our old selves and create space for an improved, better version.

Brahmacharya | Reversing Overindulgence by "Going After Brahman"

Brahmacharya | Reversing Overindulgence by "Going After Brahman"

Here we go, loves, week four of the yamas and niyamas series. This week we're covering Brahmacharya, or the tenant of non-excess. This one is interesting and stands out from the others, because when you translate it from Sanskrit, it literally means "going after Brahman." A Brahman in Hinduism is a teacher or guru, and some think Brahmacharya is meant to mean " walking with God," whatever God means for you.

Brahmacharya holds to an outlook of holiness, or the concept of sacredness, rather than indulgence. We talked about the concept of "enough," which goes hand in hand with this tenant, in last week's post. So, if you're interested in learning more about how to view your current life as being enough, I recommend reading that one, as well. This week's tenant asks us to walk through life seeing ourselves and all our experiences as being sacred, to be willing to "turn on to the wonders of life."

Loving our Dark Side

Loving our Dark Side

Hello Warriors,

Today I want to talk about our dark sides. You know what I'm talking about, that side of you that you try to hide, pretend it's not there, don't dare show to other people. Ring any bells? This can run the gamut from hiding a bad habit or a specific part of our personality to repressing a traumatic past or an addiction we're struggling with, maybe ways we've hurt others. Either way, the issue here is that we refuse to put our guard down, allowing others to see us for who we truly are and sometimes, we actually hide these parts of ourselves so well that we don't even see them ourselves. 

So, why is this a bad thing? We all hide things from people and show them only the parts that we choose, right? While I think many people do this to some extent, the shame in hiding part of yourself is the message behind it. What you're telling yourself while hiding is that your entire being isn't worthy enough to be accepted or loved by others. The bigger meaning underlying hiding our dark side is the problem here. It ends up leading to shame and a cycle of lying to others and ourselves.