I’ve heard that Saturn has been kicking up dust lately, causing unrest for all of us with its planetary pull.
This summer hasn’t been the easiest and most carefree. And as much as I wanted to plead with the universe that this just wasn’t the right time (although when is the right time for hardship?) my instinct was to, as best I could, consciously move through it and see what timely lesson was there to be learned.
When the surface is disturbed, it’s because something underneath is shifting, and these moments are meant to be taken advantage of. Whatever outer circumstances we are facing, it is a reflection of what needs to be resolved deep within ourselves. Outer stability comes from continuing to cultivate inner alignment.
As a yogi it all begins with turning the attention inward to attend to what is coming up in order to gain clarity on how to proceed. They call is self study, and it’s an inside job.
Ah the inner work. So aptly named.
No one can do it for us as it’s extremely personal, yet it all comes down to the same universal roots—realizing we are confined and stunted by the fears of being less than perfect, of being alone in the world, and let’s not forget, our inescapable death. We can study these deep seeds for a lifetime…and it’s work, because it requires diligence, acute attention to uncover what wants to stay hidden.
The inner realm is elusive and murky, and peeling through the layers, undoubtedly, utilizes every ounce of our resolve to stay with it and not become fickle, to keep ourselves from becoming distracted by what is more cut and dry, and on the surface of things.
No task is trickier. In fact, I’m almost certain I will be happier doing anything else: working more hours, rearranging the furniture, picking fights with my loved ones…anything that is simple and direct, that I feel I can accomplish and complete.
Yet, I’m not happier ignoring and shoving down the disquiet that calls to me from the depths of my heart. As much as it would be easier to stay with the status quo of placating inner unrest with numbing devices and staunchly blaming others for my inability to get ahead and for disrupting any chance I have at knowing peace, I just can’t.
I want more than that.
I want to express my truth fully and to have my actions come from a place of joy and a sense of freedom to be who I am. I want to alleviate myself of what is weighing me down and hiding my light in the shrouds of oppressive fear. And the power to do so lies in my commitment to asking and listening, to creating the time to explore the inner worlds.
My confidence to step up comes directly from my steady engagement with the yoga practices. They are so much more than exercise or a chance to burn off steam, they are the tools and the armor needed to walk through that inner door and meet my own demons. They encourage me to sit in the unknown until I realize that this is where I can know myself best. They offer a vantage point that puts everything into perspective.
The inner work is our life work, it is what then allows us to be who we want to be in our relationships and opens the doors for our life’s path to be fulfilling and impactful. And it is time to go back to work. (It always is!) Make a plan, sit for meditation regularly, set yourself up, and then show up, to make good on the opportunities that every day offers you to dig in deep.
Author: Julia Pearring
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Meg Wills/Flickr