I am a cradle Catholic. My yoga strengthens my faith in all ways. I have never felt like I had to choose between one or the other. I appreciate the interplay and invite their wisdom and guidance in living my best, most compassionate life.
We just started Lent on February 10th where for 40 days until Easter, you give up something.
In preparation I went through the normal study of what “can I give up?” And I came to realize that having given up caffeine, meat, gluten, low vibration foods on a day-to-day basis there was nothing there to offer up. I looked deeper.
In Yogic philosophy this could be considered Brahmacharya with the intent to refrain from 8 types of indulgence known as continence. In the Upanishads, “This soul is realized only through constant practice of truth, discipline, perfect knowledge, and continence.”
When we feel a longing or a bondage to things then we create our own misery and unhappiness results. As yogis we take only “enough.” We do not over indulge for it implies a scarcity mentality and taking more than we need.
“To preserve wealth without utilizing it for the good of others is sheer selfishness and lack of sympathy for others needs and distress.”
– Yoga Sutras Translation Swami Aranya
In his annual Lenten message, the pope writes, “Indifference to our neighbor and to God also represents a real temptation for us Christians. Each year during Lent we need to hear once more the voice of the prophets who cry out and trouble our conscience.”
Describing this phenomenon he calls the globalization of indifference, Francis writes that “whenever our interior life becomes caught up in its own interests and concerns, there is no longer room for others, no place for the poor. God’s voice is no longer heard, the quiet joy of his love is no longer felt, and the desire to do good fades.”
He continues that, “We end up being incapable of feeling compassion at the outcry of the poor, weeping for other people’s pain, and feeling a need to help them, as though all this were someone else’s responsibility and not our own.”
Let us be inspired and lead the way of Compassion. The Bhakti way, the way of love.
For Lent Give Up:
Recommit yourself to caring and having concern for your human family. Demonstrate compassion for those suffering. Then go beyond this to include being responsive to all living creatures great and small. Ultimately accept responsibility for the quality of life for all our brothers and sisters.
Together this lent let’s give up the globalization of indifference.
Love yourself, love your day, love your life!