This afternoon I had the great privilege to teach a yoga class with an incredibly inspiring guest speaker. Sabine Becker is a survivor of the Thalidomide disaster of the sixties and seventies and was not only born with “little arms” but also survived and recovered from a severe stroke in 2012. As a motivational speaker she shares her story to spread the message that giving up is never an option. As a survivor of a life threatening car accident and a person who recovered from near paralyzation I easily relate to Sabine’s story and message.
Two teachings in my yoga practice of the last nine years have given great solidity to a structure that empowers my own belief that giving up is never an option. Of course there are slight caveats to this philosophy yet the foundation is sturdy because for me giving up means stealing from myself my greatest chance for true happiness. It is in Abhyasa, returning to the practice, that I am able to strengthen my resolve and this discipline that gives strength to muscles of steadfast determination required for success when facing what presents as insurmountable challenges and odds. The practice of Vairagya, non-attachment, lends itself to continuing with consistency no matter what the final outcome will be because the motive and desire are more important than the outcome. Of course there are many layers to the values and variations of the practice that serve these two teachings as well as my own specific aims and motivations. Yet at my most basic desire to live a happy and peace filled life of love without condition, these two practices are cornerstones that carry me though the turbulent waves of life that I cannot control as well as the sweet flavors of satisfaction that I brought to fruition.
However someone gets there, finding the power within that empowers your life is the juice that turns the most frightening and harrowing trials into the gifts that make our lives something of meaning and value. I bet Sabine would agree with me that no one who has faced death would wish that upon another as a way to find what you are truly made of, but it works. Rather we share our stories, find ways to deliver our messages that are inspiring and influential, and hope it helps. I teach yoga, Sabine gives great talks and presentations. If you are interested in hearing and by proxy being inspired by her story she will be presenting her talk Empowered by Perseverance; Sunday, March 15, 2015 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm at Lenny Foster’s Living Light Gallery (Suggested donation $10). I of course can be found at Shree Yoga Taos tomorrow morning at 9:30 and on Wednesdays and Fridays at the same time for inspired shenanigans embodied in a practice of incredible power.
Ultimately, in the end, this life is not without discomfort and challenge. The most difficult things to face are the ones that strip away our illusions of safety, which we would never voluntarily choose. Challenging ourselves to rise to the occasion of facing our discomfort with non-attachment on the mat translates off the mat. Returning to our practices no matter what we feel like enables us to sustain a perspective of willingness when life happens and the result is great satisfaction, fulfillment, and knowing what we are made of. The outcome of living with the philosophy of never giving up is inevitably tasting the bliss of the sweetness of your spacious spirit because you followed it’s invitation to make most of this opportunity of life. While we are breathing we still have the time to choose our course with courage and heart.
With Love, Always, In All Ways, For Giving, In Joy,