Making the Shift

by Ashley Inguanta

Once a wise friend of mine said, “When you heal yourself, you help heal the world.” Yes, it all starts from within. When we transform individually, so does the world. We are parts of a whole, and that’s beautiful. Everyone has an individual life narrative, a life story, and this narrative can be your best friend or your worst enemy. Sometimes our stories can hold us back, can cause us to be stuck; but other times, our narratives can help us feel empowered. It all depends upon your perspective. The good news? Your heart—that deep place inside of you that longs to be understood and heard and loved—wants you to make that shift towards empowerment and authenticity.

When we study the ancient practice of yoga—union—we do not only study asana, but we study other elements of yoga philosophy: the guṇas, for example. When we lead with the guṇa of sattva, or beingness and wisdom, we learn to spend time with that deep place inside of ourselves. Some people call this place the soul, or puruṣa; others call it “the true self.” By practicing yoga, we learn that accessing this space does not have to be a struggle.

When we write our narratives with sattva, we learn to love our stories, to feel compassion towards our stories. The more we express compassion towards ourselves, the deeper we will heal.

May the concluding lines of Mary Oliver’s poem “The Journey” rest within your heart, inspiring you to dive into a profound writing and yoga practice.

 

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do--

determined to save

the only life you could save.

 

 

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