Looking To The Light

Looking To The Light

There I was on the treadmill again. No – not at the gym. I’m talking about the metaphorical treadmill of life. Wondering when the pace might slow down, hoping I can shortly power down the machine from a sprint to a leisurely stroll.
You know those days when the moment you wake until the moment you fall into bed seem filled with ‘doing’?
I’ve gone through a few of these recently and felt very out of my comfort zone. I can cope if there is space in the near distance – but if not…
The worst part is feeling like life is passing by without me really being present in any moment.

Then the negative thoughts kick in…anxiety, pessimism, criticism, fear.

We can blame anyone or thing that falls into our frame of reference at the time for things going wrong…that driver in the car park, our job, the planets, the weather, the ‘system’.
But how much of your attitude is your own manifest?

Lately I’m seeing how much my own attitude manifests life’s outcomes. This idea has been around for thousands of years but somehow the outside world took over as the ‘big bad’. We project out dissatisfaction ‘out there’ when what we are feeling is sometimes of our own making – mentally or physically.
It’s convenient to use something ‘unchangeable’ or ‘bigger’ than us as our scapegoat for suffering. It’s a great way out of personal responsibility.

When life seems overwhelming do you look to the light or the dark?
The ancient yogis named this light ‘jyoti’ and believed it was held within us all. It’s a point of reference for us in dark times – that little spark of faith within. Sometimes a curtain shrouds the light so we can no longer feel its presence. The great thing is – it’s still there! We just have to learn how to draw the curtain back.

So how do we come back to help ourselves, to finding the inner light?
Having space for reflection.
A walk on the beach, a surf, the treadmill, gardening, yoga class…. wherever we take ourselves into a new pattern (samskara) away from our ‘busy-ness’. Whenever we create the opportunity for reflection and give our minds a rest from their routine.

Without reflection it is almost impossible to understand the whirlwind we are often in. It’s like Dorothy in the tornado. We just get swept up and carried away to a false reality.
Unlike Dorothy, we don’t wake up realizing it was all just a dream. We have to work a little harder to see past the illusion.
The journey can be so rewarding if we put in the effort…and the bonus is we get to know ourselves just a little better!

by Jill Harris