October 23, 2013

Need direction? The Simple Map to Life.

Have we lost direction?

Remember: life is a beautiful cycle of play. Life is action! We are the hands and feet of the beloved. We spend our energy wondering: “What should i do? How should i live? Should I be doing this? Am I doing this right?

All spiritual paths are about stepping into this play without being bound by it. Action without re-action. One definition of yoga is moving from lower desires to higher desires. We all have the desire to want to do better, but how specifically can we do this? The Serenity Prayer aka Kriya yoga is the best way, in my opinion—we can live our life and enjoy the divine play at hand.

The map of living is simple, which is why it has been adopted by 12 step programs and yogis  for centuries.

The Serenity Prayer

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;

The courage to change the things I can;

and the wisdom to know the difference.-

~ Reinhold Niebuhr (1943)

 Kriya Yoga (1861)

Kriya Yoga is a practice of Isvara Pranidhana, Tapas, and Svadyaya.

Isvara Pranidhana: the ability to surrender the things that we cannot change. Offer it up to the Beloved(whatever that is to you.) “ACT as if you trust God.”

Tapas: the little things that we do every day to change the things that we can; this is our work in the world. “Tap” means to burn. This is our inner fire that keeps our desire for change alive and burning as we wake every day with an intention to “act.” To carry out our love in this play.

Svadyaya: this is the wisdom to know the difference. By studying our lives, thoughts and patterns, against sacred text, we begin a self-discovery and discernment that allows us to respond from the higher mind, rather than “re-acting” from the lower mind.

This prayer and practice is a map to the essence of realization and moving in harmony with each other. The “yellow brick road” to the emerald city of the heart is paved, both for us and because of us.

“Whoever travels without a guide needs two hundred years for a two-day journey.”

~ Rumi


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Ed: Catherine Monkman

{Photo: Flickr.}

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Dani McGuire

Dani McGuire AKA Vani (meaning Saraswati) has practiced yoga since 1995, having studied Integral, Tantra, Ayurveda, Yoga Therapy, Prana Vinyasa, and Ashtanga. Her teaching is an alchemy of eastern philosophy and modern living. Using both life and practice as a way of inspiring self awakening, love, and devotion. She is creator of Sattva Vinyasa and Sattva Therapy. Vani has published 2 DVDs as well as mini online classes for your ayurvedic constitution. She is a columnist for elephantjournal.com, and founder of PranaYoga School of Yoga and Holistic Health, and PranaYoga Foundation. Dani leads teacher trainings, retreats, and workshops around the world as well as offering marriage, birth, and end of life support.