As yogis, we strive to be fully present in every moment, and I guess the word “alive” can serve as a surrogate for that concept. I studied religion in college and I remember reading the following quote by the theologian, Howard Thurman: “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” It certainly took me a long time to learn that the world wasn’t going to serve me in the way that I wanted it to. Yoga was a catalyst, allowing me to focus my intentions internally. We are lured, however, to live externally-focused lives. There is a beginning and an end, but somewhere in between those two points we will reach our full potential. We strive to arrive at that point in the future when we have successfully balanced it all – our careers, possibly a family, a sophisticated social life, a yoga practice. But what if being alive weren’t so complicated and wasn’t associated with achievement and acquisition? It’s very hard to resist that view, right? I have to admit, I consistently muse over ways I can make my home more functional and aesthetically pleasing. My most recent purchase is a hamper that has three divisions. Darks, delicate, and whites – I have a simplified a home ritual! I am so proud; I can’t wait to get home and separate my laundry! I can literally see myself stepping back to admire my work. I’m sure we all have these moments when we think we really have it all together. The career or love life coalesces and we say to ourselves, “yes, I’m here.”
But where is “here” really? (I apologize for the cliche but it just works here).
Despite my new found laundry prowess, I still had not mastered the art of time management. Honestly, I wasn’t as frustrated with myself as I am making it seem. The eager students at the next school were waiting
patiently for me when I arrived (only five minutes late). All was well and I had grabbed for myself a little bit of of life.