The light at the end of the tunnel is a metaphor that gives us hope. Our association of light with all that is good is deeply rooted in our biological survival instinct. The sun helps us to see and therefore feel safer in our environment, while also keeping us warm and growing our food. In the dark, when we cannot see, we are more often cold, vulnerable, uncertain, and afraid.
But we are not just biological creatures. The spiritual part of our nature contains the memory of an experience of oneness prior to the duality of light and dark, positive and negative, or even me and you. When this divine source projected itself outward in life's longing for itself* the opposites were born in order to create the infinite amount of expressions that we now see in nature, and in our humanity. If we ignore the negative or dark, we ignore half of the intelligence of reality.
In the last few months our yoga community has explored the wisdom inherent in the darkness of our Feminine Nature, our Spiritual Nature, and our Forgiving Nature. Each of these three potentials encourage us to be present with the discomfort and unknown of our inner world, allowing us an important opportunity for authenticity, feeling, release, healing, integration, trust and renewal. The wholeness we seek is every bit as much in the darkness of the tunnel as it is in the light on the other side.
The challenge we feel in the dark is very natural. Finding supportive, compassionate and loving guides is important, both in the outer world with people who are "just a couple steps further down the path", as well as in the inner world of meditation where we learn to awaken this within ourselves.
Meditation helps us develop and hone the skills to manage the discomfort of ‘being with what is’ in any given moment, as well as learn to hear and trust our inner guidance. With this practice, we can change how we interact with the world, beginning with creating space for our discomfort when we observe it within ourselves and our relationships. For many, our experiences in life have all but shut down our ability to feel our emotions, not to mention trust and be with them. This discomfort can be a sign that there is an unhealthy boundary we are being made aware of.
Learning how to navigate this is a very individual path. For some this will require the courage to speak our truth from a place of strength and love, or create distance from those with unhealthy boundaries. For others, we will need to let go of the need to please, to receive approval, or to fix, change or save others. Failure to build these healthier boundaries leads to the confusion, miscommunication, and situations that later require forgiveness.
Perhaps most profound for our community was the spiritual perspective that a difficult “other person” was merely a reflection of ourselves. It can be humbling but ultimately empowering and freeing when we recognize that the outside world is just mirroring back our internal vibration. We can use the energy of this discomfort to return to our own heart, perhaps starting with simple loving kindness toward ourselves.
A return to the heart helps us to be forgiving with ourselves so that we can feel patience and compassion for others. In this light, many of us have found it healing to connect with difficult people on a soul level by imagining them as a loving presence here to play a role of reflecting back our own discomfort and darkness. We can imagine their voice saying, “I am your dear timeless friend. I love you and that's why I have played this role for you."
These last few months have helped us become more familiar with the dark, and feel supported in our human experience of the natural and difficult emotions of living. When we do this more regularly, we clear the space for what our life longs to express through us. In the next two months of summer, we will carry this forward with a focus on strengthening our internal guidance system so as to find greater connection with our inner wisdom and intuition.
JULY: Hearing the Language of our Soul
AUGUST: Cultivating the Garden of Intuition
Please share this message with a friend and invite them to join for one or two months, or become a monthly supporter of this work. Each month of study stands on its own, and yet also builds on past months as our yoga community evolves together.
With Great Love,
Guiding Theme | Issue #108 | The Light at the End of the Tunnel
Yoga Philosophy | Issue #109 | Our Planet of Love in Form
Our Yoga Nature | Issue #110 | Coming July 24
Yoga Therapy Class | Issue #111 | Coming July 31