How to hand over the mess.

Via on Aug 14, 2011
Zurab Tsereteli, "Janitor", Moscow, 2000

 This guy is ready to clean the temple.

The yogi realizes that his life and all its activities are part of the divine action in nature, manifesting and operating in the form of man… His body is a temple which houses the Divine Spark. He feels that to neglect or to deny the needs of the body and to think of it as something not divine, is to neglect and deny the universal life of which it is a part….The yogi does not look heaven-ward to find God for he knows that He is within, being known as the Antaratma (the Inner Self). He feels the kingdom of God within and without and finds that heaven lies in himself.” -Light on Yoga, B.K.S. Iyengar

But sometimes the temple is too messy inside.

Self-knowledge is not always comfortable. If we do not like what we find, we are, in all honesty, obliged to do something to alter it. [Isvara-Pranidhana] is the surrender, through meditation (dhyana) and devotion (bhakti), of the ego itself.” -Light on Life, B.K.S. Iyengar

Bhakti yoga practices can present a form of devotion cultivating Isvara-Pranidhana (surrender to the Divine).  The yoga of devotion inspires one to consider an external manifestation of worship and dedication, in the form of a Divine avatar.

After one has exhausted one’s own resources and still not succeeded, one turns to the Lord for help for He is the source of all power. The student prays: ‘I do not know what is good for me. Thy will be done.’” -Light on Yoga, B.K.S. Iyengar

When the inner tempest is overwhelming, find joy and peace in demonstrating devotion. Lay your mess down at the Divine’s feet and let the Great Janitor clean house!

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About Clare Polencheck

Clare L. Polencheck is a yoga instructor and portrait photographer in Minnesota. With an open mind and eager heart, she strives to live and write from a Christian-Yogic spiritual perspective, and is humbled to share tidbits of her lessons as a teacher of asana, a student of her students, and a pupil of Universe. Learning to go with God’s flow is her goal and mantra.

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11 Responses to “How to hand over the mess.”

  1. Katherine says:

    Ummm… the internal temple only becomes cluttered when you externalize yourself into the outside world. Worshiping something outside only weakens your knowledge of yourself and your own inner strength. Stop listening to those who wish to condemn you and know that the flaws they see are themselves, not you. The only way to clean house is to get the voice of holier than though out of your head. Recognize yourself as lovable just the way you are.

  2. Tanya Lee Markul tanya lee markul says:

    Thank you Clare. Beautiful message.

    Posting to Elephant Yoga on Facebook and Twitter.

    Tanya Lee Markul, Assoc. Yoga Editor
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  3. Confused says:

    in a lot of yoga readings (including this one) i come across the words … Lord, God…. are they referring to the Lord Jesus Christ? Lord Shiva? Does it mean our inner divine, not an external "person"?

    • yogiclarebear says:

      Hey there! Great question. In the scope of Bhakti yoga, the "person" is suggested to be an avatar that you hold as a personal "external" representation of that inner divine.

      For me, it is Jesus, the Holy Spirit, the Father of the Christian tradition. For you? That is only for you to answer if Bhakti is part of your practice!

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