Sunday, December 4, 2011

Joy for the holidays

The holiday season is certainly upon us. The holidays carry a joyful bhava (bhava is a Sanskrit word meaning "emotional flavor" or "feeling"). However sometimes I feel myself getting disappointed when I experience  more stress then I do joy. I have to remind myself that I am already a busy person and when holidays come I try to do so much. If I wake up without much thought and go about my day it is only natural that my emotional flavor will be of stress. Joy is something I have to make my intention and I have to remind myself of that intention everyday. When I keep this in my awareness then even busy moments like holiday shopping or family dinner juggling I can delight in the flavor of joy. How great it is to be around family! How great it is to make offering to the ones I love! Even finding some joy in being stressed (its all part of the pulsation).

Below is one of my favorite quotes from The Yoga of Discipline by Swami Chidvilasananda widely known as Gurumayi an enlightened spiritual master and John Friends Guru:

"The sunrise of supreme bliss shimmers
in every particle of the universe,
so why not drink a fresh cup of JOY every day
and become inspired with new perception?
Remember, love and respect
must be renewed with each dawn."

I have been reminding myself of this quote and have read it in some classes lately. The part that is standing out to me recently is "why not drink a fresh cup of joy every day". This idea that we need to renew these bhava's daily.

Last week in class I focused on twists. Twisting out stress so we can renew our joy each day. I focused on the difference between a twist and a turn. A twist has two counter actions going on, like opening up a pickle jar. If you use one hand and turn the top one direction the whole bottle will move that direction and you wont open the jar. You need to use both hands twisting one hand one direction and the other hand the opposite direction, then wa-la! You can delight in eating your pickles. Same goes when we twist the body, from the belly button up you twist in on direction, and from the belly button down you twist in the opposing direction. I thought twists would be appropriate after thanksgiving festivities. 

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