I’ve written about remembering our ABCs before. This last month, I’ve added some more ABCs, which have important meaning as well.
Acceptance, Balance and Connection have been the monthly theme at my yoga studio. Focusing on one at a time (per week), each one became a part of my intention for practice and stayed with me throughout the day. Through meditation and asana, each one became embedded in my conscious awareness. As I have continued to reflect on each one, and then the three together, here is what I believe is true for me.
Acceptance is not easy. I read that “acceptance is the doorway to transformation.” I do believe that is true. Acceptance of whatever it is that is happening now…or whatever has happened that causes sadness, pain, loss, disenfranchisement or separation, is a messenger. At this point in my life, I see that is true. That I see it now, isn’t an indication that it is always easy. For I am human. I am capable of falling into old habits, of hitting the “default” button rather than the “reset” button. However, as time passes, and I begin to reflect on the event, situation and the person(s) involved, I find my way to acceptance. Seeing the message can take a bit more time and sometimes it is clear as soon as I get to acceptance. As a way of keeping peace, finding forgiveness and remaining centered, I find that acceptance is key.
Balance is also a challenge. Born under a Libra sun, I have heard it all about balance. I used to say that I was always working on being balanced. What I learned later is that we Librans tend toward the extreme, and we are learning balance! So the concept of balance is certainly not foreign to me. As I become stronger in my practice, I am aware of the importance of balance in asana and that always is translatable in life. Old habits of giving to others – of my time and resources – whether they asked or not is a clear indicator of the balance that isn’t there. If I perceived a need by someone, I worked toward meeting it. Whether they asked for anything from me was not a significant consideration in my choice to take action. There is a lot about an old habit like this that I could say much, much more about…perhaps in another post. The point is that when I am out of balance, I am generally not taking as good care of myself as I must. When I become aware that I am not caring for myself, I realize I have made a significant investment of my energy in the “other” – the other person, the other situation, the other activity, etc. Balance is key to leading a life of good health, joy and happiness.
Connection is what every soul seeks. I feel most deeply connected to another when I feel safe, seen and heard. We also find connection in community. When we are with others who see and value our being and our contributions, without attachment, we feel connected. Another very important connection is to nature, or to our belief about who we are – related to something greater than ourselves. Whatever we may refer to that power, for many of us, that connection is made in meditation. And, connection to nature can serve as a meditation in itself. Connection to ourselves is important as well and relates to how well we know and therefore care for or otherwise make time and space for our own needs. As I continue to deepen my relationship with the power greater than myself, to nature, I find I know more about me – my needs, what I love, what is important, how I give and what inspires me. Connection is key to our very being – alone, in community and in service.
As I have continued to reflect upon these three, I’ve begun to see that the absence of any one of these makes the others nearly impossible to achieve – at least with any amount of authenticity.
What are your thoughts, reflections and personal experiences with acceptance, balance and connection?
As you consider your relationship with these ABCs – acceptance, balance and connection – I offer a beautiful poem and an inspiring photo from the recent eclipse.
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
As an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
This photo was taken by Lori Coleman, whose images I share here with her permission. I encourage you to check out the Images page on this site to learn more about the gifted photographer who captured this image and others from the eclipse and nature. Many of her images are available for purchase.