Why am I here? What is my karma? I run the gamut of emotions daily. Sometimes I’m what my friend Ali call’s an “off the rack person” (this refers to someone who will buy anything that the newest designers are promoting – the items that are on the racks in Neiman’s, Nordstrom’s or in the local boutiques), this is the Lisa that loves to shop and shares her product reviews with you. This Lisa that run’s out for the quick fix of retail therapy. The one who’s (I must admit)heart beats faster when the new retail arrives at Barry’s Bootcamp.
At other times I’m someone who wants to donate any extra that I have. This is the Lisa that is constantly creating foundations, running and attending fundraisers and giving as best I can. At other times I am the yogic person who believes I can find the most happiness in friendships, yoga, cooking and other self-fulfilling activities.
I was born less than privileged (understatement). I constantly strived to be the best. I did not really give myself many choices in life – I tried to follow a path that would take me directly to the life I wanted (this is how I wound up as a CPA at KPMG for many years). Currently, I am very thankful to have exceeded all of “little Lisa’s” dreams – amazing family and friends, nice home with all the trappings of success. But I still often wonder – who am I? And how do I now define success?
For years, I’ve been defining success as obtaining the newest designer’s this-or-that. The fact that I could afford the latest hand bag or shoes was enough to make me smile. As I embarked on my yogic journey, I realized there was more for me in this life- a lot more. I am currently working with my guru Colleen Lila Bruckner to get to the heart of this. I believe many of us are searching for profound love and respect for ourselves. We seek to be free of karma. This is why I’d like to share my journey with you. Together, perhaps, we can figure it all out.
Colleen’s yoga teacher training changed my life! It took me from being someone seeking the most recent fashion trends to someone that questions “why is this?”. I have come to know myself better in the past year and a half than I have in the past 40 something years. Colleen has taught me all about Ayurvedic principals and how I can use them to help me and my students to become healthier and happier. If you are considering yoga teacher training, I cannot endorse her enough. I’m going to try and attend some of her sessions at Breathe in Chappaqua. If you feel like you are in the hungry ghost realm (seeking to get away from desire, greed, anger and ignorance), this program will help you to find your personal abundance, fulfill your dharma and feel great. It will also help you to perfect your asana practice and learn to correct yourself and others while flowing.
Yesterday we discussed the concept of the bondage of karma. We all have karma and lessons to learn in this lifetime. This is what makes us feel limited. This is what leads to attachment and aversion. Attachment, as defined by the Tantra Illuminated is “the conviction that we need something outside of ourselves to be fulfilled”. Aversion is the same vibration only inverted: the conviction that we cannot be fulfilled until certain things are eliminated or avoided.
Karma is such an overused word and feels like such an intense word. To me karma is defined as the sum of my actions and how this effects who I am. So for example, if I spend money on very expensive products instead of helping those in need, does that mean I will be punished in some way? I doubt it but I cannot give you an answer- only share with you that I grapple with this concept daily.
In an attempt to reach liberation, I’d like to stop being the person that these karma’s apply to. But am I capable of this? Getting to the root from which this all arises will be my key. The Tantra Illuminated states “It is the root, not the fruit, of an action that makes it selfish or not.” So, even charitable giving because it makes you feel good or for accolades is not the answer for me.
As I began on the yogic path, it brought up a lot of emotions for me. I thought yoga was going to be another form of exercise – something else to add to my arsenal of “get thin now” activities. Boy was I wrong. Turns out its more of a mind exercise- a “get calm and get to understand yourself” kind of activity. For me, I like group classes for exercise – I enjoy that team sport feeling and comradery. On the contrary, when I do a yoga practice, I’d much prefer to be on my own or in a very small group.
Through yoga, I have embarked on seeking the feeling of abundance by finding my path and purpose. Using a physical practice, I will remain present enough to tap into the truth about myself). I’ve realized (as Colleen put’s it)- “The Perfection Project” isn’t working. So, now what? Join me as I address the heart of the issues through Yoga. I will try to encourage you to do the same.
Today’s assignment- relinquish control and enjoy the holidays!
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