Friday, 18 May 2012

Hidden gifts

Hanuman is one of my favourite deities. He’s the monkey god, the gods are reflections of ourselves so it’s not that surprising I’m drawn towards the monkey man.

All good things start, as my mum would tell me, with the mother. In Hanuman’s case this is Anjana. Anjana was a very devout woman who wanted nothing more than to be a mother. To this end she prayed and practiced daily. The wind god, Vayu, heard her prayers and resolved to help Anjana, to this end he sent some grains of rice with his bird friends to Anjana. As she reached into the air with her hands in Anjali Mudra the birds dropped the grains of rice into her hands. Knowing better than to question the gift she’d received, Anjana simply opened her mouth and tossed in the rice. As soon as they hit her stomach she became pregnant.

When we first start a yoga practice I would say it’s pretty normal to want everything straight away. To become a master or at least have a list of things we want to tick off, so we can say we’ve done it. Or at least that’s how I was and secretly still am. It took a long time for me to realise that this practice isn’t linear, sometimes it doesn’t make any sense and sometimes we feel confused and demotivated. The thing about yoga is that we get exactly what we need and we don’t get to decide what that is. We must, as Anjana did, show up, every day, clean the mirror of our deepest Self and accept whatever we are offered. In our society, that’s not so easy, staying in the moment with what is isn’t easy. However, when we do play in the present moment life gets a whole lot simpler and happier.

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