Rebirth and Renewal

flower jeff

In my creative work, be it composing and performing music, singing, writing books or teaching workshops, I am inspired by a wish for each one of us, myself included, to find permanent freedom by connecting to our essential true nature. As we rest into our natural self, we connect to the planet, to all things and to the Divine.

The oh-so-very human ability to “fall off path” and discard any spiritual awareness when our ego gets triggered is both humbling and empowering. As Eckhart Tolle reminds us, when painful emotions are active, our “pain bodies” are alive. Consciousness is then temporarily eclipsed by our attachments to our small, divided sense of self. We close off from life, hide in our hardened self-created shell convinced that life is “happening to me”. We blame. We resent. We act out our suffering on those around us and in turn, we all suffer.

Through the experiences that challenge us, we are given the gift of a powerful fertilizer to fuel our spiritual growth. The process of rebirth, renewal is available to us in each moment, if we are willing to soften, open and be present for what is. It is entirely up to each one of us – and therein lies great power – to let go of our own attachments to our “pain body” and find freedom. Our ego however is not interested in personal transformation. It only has a limited perception, needs to feel better or worse than, and is bound to create pain. Though the opportunity for awakening is gifted to us in every moment, for those who are willing, spring and the time of Easter are rich reminders of this truth.

Amma, the great spiritual teacher and humanitarian from South India, points out that the perfect symbolism of the death of the ego is seen in the Christian cross – a strike through “I”. Jesus’s life showed us that through the death of the ego, we rest into the eternal freedom of new life. The kingdom of heaven lies within, and he shows us the way. As we die to this moment, let go of our need to be right, better than, worse than, feel hard done by, crave to feel loved, want things to be other than they are, we are born into the perfect, infinite now. We transcend the illusion of death, that is, the fear that “I” will die if “I” let go. As our precious sense of “me” dies, we find eternal life. The cross illustrates that we are neither the ego nor the body, but sacred beings passing through the temporal, rooted in the infinite.

Our essential true nature, beyond the grasp of ego play, is one with the Divine. In that, we find our inherent connection to the natural world and the life force that magnificently pours through it in order to sustain all. In this way, Easter and Earth Day are welcome neighbours this year. Nature herself graciously shows us year after year that there is life after death, that after the ice of winter, soft, new growth arises and blooms.

Easter festivities have fit comfortably throughout history alongside various pagan celebrations of new life that show up each spring. I find it noteworthy that the word Easter bears similarities to the names Eostare or Ostara, a Saxon and Germanic pagan Goddess of spring and rebirth. The Babylonian Goddess of the morning and evening stars Ishtar bears a similar name, as does the Jewish queen Esther whose courage is celebrated at the spring festival of Purim. The goddess and her cornucopia are richly celebrated at this time of year.

Whether you are Christian, pagan, Jewish, other or atheist, there are lots of reasons for celebration. Whichever way inspires you to connect to your true nature, may you rest into who you truly are. May we all join in giving thanks for the bounty we receive from our gracious Earth Mother, our planet. We are all her children and one Earth family.

Photo courtesy of Jeff Gerald, jeffgerald.com

Photos courtesy of Jeff Gerald, jeffgerald.com

Enjoy the gift of this day,

Parvati

 

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WHY YOGA IN THE NIGHTCLUB

I am often asked what inspired me to bring yogic expression into the club scene. I answer easily. Yoga In the Nightclub is a natural expression of who I am as a musical artist and dedicated yogini. Yoga is not a physical practice but a way of life. It is about learning to be present in all one does, to see the divine here, now, in this moment. As such, yoga is everywhere. It is about feeling connected to something much greater than our limited ego or will. It is about being in service to life, feeling interconnected to that very life force. Yoga In The Nightclub is a celebration of life and a reminder that we can find awakened presence everywhere.

Yoga in the West is mostly known as a series of bendy physical exercises. Yet there is much more to it than fitness. Yoga’s systematic breath and body exercises, designed to clear the subtle channels in our energy system, prepare us for meditation, through which we may experience a life inspired by our interconnected, multidimensional true nature. Our body, that once was seen as “mine”, is no longer our identity, but a gift on loan from the divine. We care for it, but we are not attached to it. The practice of yoga offers us the opportunity to experience the transmutation of matter into pure light, embody the multidimensional and rest in the eternal.

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WE ARE ALL CONNECTED

Hatha yoga, the physical practice of yoga, is just one of many aspects of yoga, which range from selfless service to astrology and prayer. The Sanskrit word “yoga” most simply translates to “union”, implying that the practice of any yoga will bring together our perceived sense of separateness. As a whole, yoga is an ancient science of life. It is a practical method of shedding excess and bringing us back from the self-delusion of separation from the divine so that we may realize our inherent interconnection to and ultimate oneness with it.

As we begin to understand that yoga is everywhere, we come to see how we are all connected in vast ways far beyond the limitations of our personal will and ego. What I do affects you, and vice versa. We are one earth family. At the heart of it all, we share the same heartbeat. Breathe to be. We are one.

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AWAKENED LIVING

When we are open, life blossoms, just as a flower opens to welcome the morning sun.  We see that the sun, though it is millions of light years away, has a tender yet powerful relationship with the flower, as do the rain and the clouds. From this perspective we see that we are part of the whole. Life is a symphonic masterpiece with which, when we are open, we are completely resonant.

As we come to understand our oneness, we can revel in it with wonder and joy. We can consider in awe how immense it all is. We can let go of the idea that an illusory, isolated sense of self could possibly be in control, and open to an exquisite unfolding of life in absolute perfection. Our actions become not about “me” but about the whole. Each moment is integrated within the whole. No one decision is separate.

When we begin to see that each decision we make affects not just ourselves but everyone and everything on the planet, we act with more compassion. When we have more compassion, we realize the impact of our actions and we naturally want less and practice more kindness. As stewards of the Earth, we each are called to learn to live in harmony with ourselves, each other and our planet. We all breathe the same air and live on the same living organism, our planet. Varied in race and creed, we are all one family, children of the same mother, the planet Earth.

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THE OPPORTUNITY FOR GRACE

In each moment, there is infinite grace. By becoming more conscious as we practice yoga on the mat, at work, at play or in the nightclub, we let go of the unnecessary and develop greater internal spaciousness which blooms throughout our lives. In this space new life and possibilities arise.

As we rest our awareness on the simple purity and grace of the breath, we realize - we are alive! We let go of wanting things from the future and the past and open to what is here and now. We feel as vast as the sky and rooted in the richness of this moment.

When we “breathe to be”, we understand our interconnection. We see that we are not the doers but a part of the whole, the same energy that is in the flowers and in the stars. We know that our essence is divine - from which we have come, to which we return.

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PARVATI'S NEW SINGLE - MARCH 2016
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I AM LIGHT

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Let me know how yoga and YEM have touched your life. You can send a link to a video by you if you would like. Comments may be shared on my website if you check the "permission to share" box.
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SHARE YOUR YOGA
I am light!

Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
Gone, gone beyond. Oh what awakening!
Gone, gone beyond. Swaha!

I am light, dancing in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!
I am light, in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!

Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
Gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi swaha
I am the light, liquid gold light
I am in delight! Swaha!

I am light, dancing in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!
I am light, in delight!
I am light, dancing through the night!

I am the light (gate gate), liquid gold light (paragate)
I am in delight (gate gate) transforming the night (paragate)

Gone, gone beyond (gate gate)! Oh what awakening! (paragate) (I am)
Gone, gone beyond (gate gate)! Swaha!

I am light, dancing in delight
I am light, dancing through the night
I am light, in delight
I am light, dancing through the night

I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light (gate gate)
I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light (paragate)
I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light, I am light

I am light!

© 2015 Parvati Devi
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