For many years I have felt that if I could just be disciplined enough I would be happy. People who knew me would always be surprised and respond, but you have so much discipline! And in some ways that was true. To be an artist, to be a classical musician and sing opera, I had to study a lot and master many things which took rigor and a certain type of discipline. Then the work I did in art education with Lincoln Center in particular, had a very demanding intellectual rigor associated with it's methodology and was quite broad in it's educational scope. (I taught ages pre-K to post graduate, working in tough urban environments as well as private schools, and universities, nationally and internationally.) Yet I was never content and felt very much distracted most of the time with the thought that "there must be something else to life."
Now I understand that feeling of discontent and distraction in the context of what I am learning here in the Bahamas at the Sivananda Vedanta Yoga Center. The lessons are not completely new, as I have been exploring the yoga and Buddhism path for a while now. Yet, now the teachings are crystal clear.
1) The distraction comes from my mind which is constantly seeking satisfaction from things that lie outside of myself. All satisfaction sought from things outside of myself are temporary and thus only continue to keep me distracted, always seeking something more.
2) All happiness lies actually within my true self which is already eternally happy.
I will be writing more about these two tenants of yoga philosophy each week as I move more deeply in to my practice of yoga.
Namaste (not me, you)
Photos of the Initiation Ceremony at the beginning of the Teacher Training that I am now participating:
The Altar in the Temple, the Hindu aspect of God known as Ganesha, the elephant headed diety prominently behind