How to Find the Gift in Crisis and Meet a Pandemic with an Open Heart

As I live mostly in isolation in my music studio these months to complete the music for GEM: Global Education for MAPS, I feel for the many people who need to live in isolation due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic unfolding all over the world – some of whom are very personally dear to me. I pray daily for all who are struggling with, or have lost loved ones due to, this virus. This unprecedented time makes inner peace more relevant than ever. We are called through COVID-19 to awaken interconnection, in order to reactivate our personal and global immunity. I will have lots more to say on this subject. This week, in support of your inner peace sanctuary and deep immunity, let’s take a look at how to let go, the third step of the three-step process of transformation that we have been exploring.

There are many things we want to get rid of in our lives. It could be an old pair of skates, outdated electronics, or worn-out shirts. Likely, we either push them back into the corners of our closets and garages where they collect dust, or we gather them up and bring them to the appropriate donation or disposal site so that they are gone from our homes. We tend to be the same way in how we treat aspects of our personalities that we do not like. We try to push them into the recesses of our minds, only to find that they now congest our internal space. Or we try to gather them up to throw them out by pushing them away, only to find that somehow they remain driving forces in our lives. Either way, we do not get the results we want. Why?

When we are ready to discard an object like a torn pair of shoes, we do so because we recognize that it does not serve us anymore. We have likely had the shoes sitting in the bottom of our closet for a while. Perhaps each time we opened the closet to get dressed, we have peered at them, noticing how we still like them, but can no longer use them. We may consider all the dances we enjoyed in those shoes, and the memories they hold. But as we understand that they no longer serve, and we witness their now passing place in our lives, we let them go and move them along.

We must practice the same three-step process—understanding, witnessing, and releasing—with our painful thoughts and habits. We need to first realize that they do not serve. Then we witness the ways we are attached to them. Because we understand, we can be in a witness state, giving them no more energy. Then the letting go becomes automatic.

Why Can’t We Let Go?

We cannot and will not let go of something we still consider valuable. So if a painful thought or habit continues to show up in your life, in some way you still want it there. At a practical level, it may seem incomprehensible that you give value to this thought or habit. For example, if you are staying in an abusive relationship or eating unhealthy foods, likely your conscious mind understands that these are not good for you. Yet you have to look deeper at the root of your attachment to them, so that you can free yourself from them.

For example, when you understand that you have been unconsciously seeing your boss as your father, from whom you deeply want love and approval, then you can witness the way you have not actually been present for your professional relationship. Once you see your boss as quite simply your boss with all his imperfections, and witness him as he is, then you can let him go—however that takes shape. It could be that you find a new level of peace while continuing to work with him. Or it could be that you see this is not an environment in which you will thrive, and you find a new job.

The Message of COVID-19

Today, more than ever, we are being shown the power of letting go. The COVID-19 virus is like a toxic relationship. It shows us how we have been living disconnected from our true selves. We have been taking from nature, living out of balance with the whole. Now, we have a virus in our midst, and many are suffering from its direct effects. It takes—cells, breath, even lives. In so doing, it reflects to us our own disbalance.

Faced with this pandemic, we are afraid of our own mortality. We fear we will not have enough food, water and basic resources to survive. We fear we will be attacked, and that we are not loved. And yet, when we pause to look deeper and become truly honest with ourselves, have not these fears been driving our lives all along? Have not these fears been the cause for us living in disconnect?

What makes us want more than we need? What makes us take, when living in balance will ensure our survival? It is not love. It is not health. It is not kindness. It is not neighbourly. It is not the practical reality that we all share the same air and must treat it with respect and dignity. The consciousness born of feeling separate from the whole causes illness in ourselves, our families, our communities, and our environment. Now we have a chance to understand how we have participated in those tendencies, witness our attachments to them, and let them go at all levels in our minds, bodies and spirits.

As we meet the coronavirus with an open heart, in the presence of our inner peace sanctuary, we see that it does not need to summon the death of our bodies. Instead, we can let it be the death of our fears, our resentments, and any of the ways we may have been living as takers, just like the virus. It has come as a mirror of these things. As we understand the ways we have been out of balance, as we witness our attachment to being that way, we have the opportunity through the coronavirus to let go of all that which does not serve our highest good. Today, more than ever, as we practice the three steps to transformation that give us inner peace, we can experience a total life makeover for the good of all life everywhere. May it be swiftly so.

From my heart to yours,
Parvati

PS: A while ago, I suggested you set hourly reminder chimes for yourself to take a moment to breathe and be present. Please keep doing that. Visualize your every cell filled with golden light. I am currently creating a guided audio meditation to help with this. Sign up to the GEM mailing list here to get your copy as soon as it is available.

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I loved reading this Parvati! I found it really helpful and have passed it on to many more 💖

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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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WHAT LIGHT GETS YOU THROUGH YOUR DAY?

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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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