It seems like our lives are taking an unsettling turn all around the globe.
I wanted to step down for a moment into a reflective space and try to make sense of all this. Among all the thoughts and emotions that are alive now in me, I noticed that the sense of time has changed in my experience.
April, I thought, already!
In my mother tongue, Armenian, the word for the month of April is ‘’Abril’’ (Ապրիլ).
Which is also the verb TO LIVE.
What a beautiful realization it was when I remembered which month it was going to be, despite the very core of the pandemic was the deeply rooted fear of dying.
I quickly understood that I was going to have to make up my mind, and take a stand.
Was I going to focus on death, or on life?
The meaning of not dying and living is not quite the same anymore.
For many years I have heard Sadhguru say over and over again how we are not fully living our lives, about how important it is to not just go through life by somehow making it to old age, that instead we take charge and be fully involved, be fully alive!
Yes, this is what I wanted now, more than ever.
It’s not about being disconnected, nor about dismissing the facts and all the suffering and challenges around the globe. It is about deciding where to place my focus and energies.
Of course this is always easier said than done, as we are continuously being tested, it’s an up and down kind of process. After all, we all come with our baggage, perceptions, fears, and anxieties. This maybe challenging but it’s an empowering step to take.
So how did this decision impact me?
As an Isha Hatha Yoga teacher, a pandemic like this means stop teaching for the time being.
In the context of my profession as a social worker, it meant something very different.
I can't go into quarantine. I have to continue attending to clients, who are now in more distress, heightened states of anxiety and depression, more in fragile and at high risk situations than usual. I am being deployed in centers where outbreaks are happening.
Did I want this?
So far, in context of my work, even in other emergency situations, never my own life was at high risk. This feels different. This is where I had to make a decision and choose with what attitude I was going to go through this time of many challenges.
I quickly committed to making the best of the situation.
No more social activities, no problem (not that I had much time for this before!). Instead, I decided to focus on wellbeing more intensely on my daily yoga practices, take the early morning time and after work free time to be rooted in my practices. In times of change and chaos, it is so much more important to turn inward and center ourselves.
Bringing our attention within, conserving energy is most important, instead of dissipating outwardly (constantly listening to news, talk about pandemic all the time, be exposed to information on social media, etc.)
Already known, but what benefits of Sadhana I experience during this time :
Boost of immune system
Calming of the mind
Increased prana (life force)
Feeling more centered
Decreasing of compulsions
Time permitting, I also try to allow myself to rest more, learn and read, reach out to others virtually. We do not now how things will unfold, and how long this journey will turn out to be, therefore, I feel it’s important to establish myself to be able to go through this with as much grace as I can!
I chose LIFE.
In my case, I believe it means to put aside fear and do what is required.
We are doing this in various ways : whether by staying home and respecting guidelines, creating a loving environment for our family, supporting loved ones or total strangers in whichever capacity we can, or going to work if the situation requires it.
We may not have the ability to choose the outcome for ourselves, our loved ones or the entire humanity, but we can certainly guide our own personal journey and be empowered by our responsibility. We can choose what our attitude will be.
What do you choose?
What is supporting you through this process?
There are so many supportive tools out there.
But if you do not know where to begin, you can check out these free online Yoga tools : https://www.hathayogawithhera.com/free-yoga
Stay safe and stay strong!