What I loved about ashtanga was the observation and realisation of the impermanence of my thoughts. How I could carry a belief around like an anchor and watch it dissipate with time.
For example, when I arrived at the second series, at eka pada sirsasana (foot behind the head pose), I truly 100% believed, no doubt whatsoever, that I could never ever achieve such a feat ( no pun intended). I would even try to convince my teacher, and other practitioners:
- because it’s incredibly difficult
- because my torso is long and my legs are short, it seemed physically impossible, square peg round hole kinda thing.
But I practiced, and one day my foot reached my ear. I kept practicing, and one day my foot slipped behind my head. Not gracefully, but it happened.
The impossible became possible.
It had me thinking what else in my life am I believing to be impossible that might actually be possible:
A successful business? Healing a broken relationship ? Overcoming an addiction?
It is this realisation that opened the door to Sri Lanka. It seemed impossible to leave, to leave my business, my family, my life.
But it happened.
SL was a mind trip on its own. After two months, I wanted to run back home. However, I also knew that if I stayed still, and didn’t panic, something might happen. And something did. God revealed Himself to me.
A few crazy moments had to happen before that divine encounter. Many uncomfortable moments. Coming face to face with my demons, my judgements, my beliefs, my fears.
There were times I ended up with people I didn’t know, in places I didn’t know, speaking a language I didn’t know. My mind would panic , trying to convince me, perhaps trying to protect me : “ok, girl, this is it, this is where they rape you, steal your bag and dump you in a ditch.” When I would actually come to understand the situation, it was usually something along the lines of : “we’re going to prepare you a special traditional Sri Lankan meal in your honour.”
I was constantly analysing situations and people according to my past, according to the beliefs that my culture and my experience have taught me to believe. I realised how many moments I must have misconstrued, and ruined because I reacted to these false beliefs. Both abroad and at home. Not seeing the situation or the person in their truth.
It was like that about Christianity, and Jesus. I tried everything to NOT believe. I did not want to follow a spiritual path with Jesus. Anything, anything but Jesus. I wanted to be a mystical Sufi, twirling and reciting poems by the moonlight. Or a yogi, sitting atop the Himalayas, adorned in prayer beads.
But He kept dropping me hints. I kept telling Him to go away, that He didn’t have what I needed.
I believed that only uneducated people or people that lived desperate, difficult lives believed in Christ. I believed that Christians were closed minded and were to blame for a majority of the suffering in this world. And part of it is true, but a true Christian, a true follower of Christ would not have done such atrocities. It took me a lot of time and research to see, to see through the ocean of lies around Jesus and true Christianity. To see through the falsities that have been created by people with an agenda, to lead us into fear based lives.
I understand that this is why I received a backlash when I launched my blog. They only saw what they have been trained to see. Jesus = bad , Christians = wrong, judgemental, dangerous.
We surround ourselves with people that think like us, that act like us. We hardly ever scratch the surface of different, because it’s uncomfortable. And people don’t want to be disturbed, they don’t want their lives shaken, their opinions challenged, their beliefs confronted. Because maybe, just maybe, they might find out that they might have been wrong about a thing or two.
And boy, oh boy, take it from me, it’s really messy when that happens!!!
So I am writing this post as a response to the backlash, not out of resentment because I understand you all completely. I was just like you. I simply want to clarify what Christianity is to me, what Christianity is in its true essence :
Compassion towards all, forgiveness, cooperation, caring and sharing with the poor and the oppressed, justice for orphans and widows, loving others more than myself.
Jesus gives me the strength to put my worldly desires aside and fills me with the desire to love and care for those in need, around me and beyond.
That’s just a tiny part. The whole point of this blog, of my life as well, is to demonstrate to others the beauty and uniqueness of Jesus. I pray that God will allow me to do that with grace and love.
May God’s peace and grace be with you all