It was a Sunday afternoon after my weekend workshop at Kripalu where I experienced a huge heart awakening, due to the beautiful and open-hearted participants in the workshop, the amazing assistants and support I received, the powerful teachings of the Five Elements and transformational Tantric philosophy, and the fact that my heart has recently caught fire with my newfound soul mate who was with me at Kripalu.
Pleasantly exhausted after a full weekend of teaching, we decided to take a walk down a dirt road through the forest near my house. It was a damp and misty day, raining lightly, yet the sun illumined the clouds from above which cast a glorious greenish/yellow hue on the trees, ferns, and daffodils burgeoning with the powerful life-force and vitality of Spring.
It was a perfect moment. I could feel the power of new growth, restoration, and healing energy arising from the earth. The dirt road beneath my feet was softened by the mist and my beloved by my side, walking hand in hand. The warmth of her hand filled my heart and soul with love.
We both noted the exquisite and breathtaking beauty of the colors, fragrance of blossoms, sounds of the many birds, and the feeling of grace in the air. The earth was simply doing its thing just like every year. But I was present in a new way this time.
Filled with the feeling of contentment, fulfillment, and awe, I was aware that each step I took, brought me deeper into the magical moment of Purna, fullness. My mind was open and calm, my body flowing, and my heart pulsing with the bliss of deep soul connection to myself, life, and my beloved. This was a moment of utter perfection that I never wanted to end.
We continued down the road to the bridge that overlooked a stream surging with fullness. We first looked to the right to see where the river was coming from. Although we couldn’t see the source, we noticed it was raging, twisting and turning, flowing more swiftly with more rapids and current than on the other side.
We walked to the other side of the bridge to see where the river was going. It was calmer and broadened out. There were fewer rapids yet the current was still very swift in the middle.
Then a light went off in my head. Life is like the river. In the beginning, we need to forge our way through life to find our purpose and explore the openings and closings of the heart. It can be tumultuous and chaotic. But if we continue to flow downstream, there comes a time when deep in our heart, there’s a settling. From experience we draw on the pool of heart wisdom where there’s an inner knowing of the nature of life.
I was flooded with gratitude for all of the work I’ve done on myself, all of the support I’ve received, all of the sadhana, and all of the pain and suffering I’ve experienced that pointed me closer and closer to the center of the stream of life where the current of grace is swift, where I can let go and allow grace to carry me. My life has broadened out, become more calm, and I’ve become more centered and clear about my purpose and the gifts I have to give.
In that moment, I realized that self-effort is absolutely needed throughout the journey of the heart to discern what I need, who I am, and create the pathway to get there. But after a certain amount of toiling, I need to make my way into the current in the middle of the stream – the threshold, between my individual effort and grace. And that learning how to let go, surrender, and open to the support of the goddess brings the most amazing joys in life.
This feeling of overwhelming joy brought a new perspective on the teachings. My mind opened up and a flume of teachings poured out. They went like this:
I am complete.
I am fulfilled.
I have everything I need already inside of me.
Grace has my back.
Life is happening for me, not to me.
Everything in life is for my awakening.
I am held in the arms of the divine goddess.
All is well and all will be well.
My heart burst open with tears of fulfillment, gratitude, and love! May you take some time to tune into the power of Spring renewal. May you surrender, let go, and allow the current of grace to carry you.
I hope to see you on the mat soon!
Todd and the Ashaya Team