Sarasvati contemplation cards

You already have everything you need within

You don’t have to search anywhere else.

The freedom you seek is within. The happiness you seek is right there too.

The truth about your being and reality, which maybe you did or maybe you didn’t know was part of the puzzle, is right there as well. The truth of your path, your dharma, is within you.

How do you find out what there is to know if it is within?

You have to be quiet.

You have to quieten the busy mind and drop back from it.

Ironically, if you really want to know your path, if you really want to experience freedom within, you have to be willing to surrender the need to control and know.

When you give up all the mental habits and desires you may well find a sort of profound joy and okay-ness.

And then perhaps a glimmer of insight as to your path will bubble up and become apparent. Where you are right now is perfect for now. Sometimes it is perfect for later on too, but we all know that change is inevitable. Maybe in stillness we get a little nudge about moving in a certain direction. And if you listen quietly maybe the message gets clearer or maybe it fades away.

I have always found that projects and ideas have presented themselves, and rightly or wrongly I have tended to follow the little nudges. Some have been more outwardly ‘successful’ than others but I always grow and learn from them.

The nudges I have followed are many, here are a few:

*Do yoga teacher training (way, way back in 2001!)

*Teach meditation as well as yoga

*Teach mother and baby yoga

*Teach yoga for breast cancer 

*Write a book

*Buy our house in Mordialloc (moving to the beach from the eastern suburbs where we had spent most of our married life)

*Create yoga off the mat contemplation cards

*Blog and chat about the contemplation cards

*Create an online course that takes people to a state of inner freedom

Some of these projects had a natural duration and others continue. The thing I have found is to stay open and to stay tuned in to the inner voice, so to speak.

Life presents us with opportunities as well as what might be seen as challenges. These are the ups and downs of any life. How we accept and ride those waves is up to us. Spend some time tuning into your inner wisdom and you might find that everything really is okay. You really can feel a sense of inner joy and okay-ness. Maybe even great bliss and love. That is always my wish for you.

Much more meaning than is teased out here can be taken from these cards, this is just a starting point.

You can purchase your own set of these ‘Yoga off the mat, contemplations to enrich your practice’ cards from the store HERE and postage is free in AustraliaThey make a perfect gift too.

The gorgeous original picture on the front of each card is by Gayle Stone Art.

*If you are interested in the possibility of experiencing more inner freedom in your life, then my online course Fluff-free freedom might be just perfect for you. Find out more HERE

Yoga off the mat contemplation cards to inspire your practice

Reality is more acceptable than fantasy

The work of yoga is the work of understanding Reality.

It is the work of understanding the truth of who we are.

The work of recognizing that the mind-generated sense of ‘me’ is limited and isn’t the sum total of who we are.

The work of feeling into the one big connected being.

Feeling into the ocean of one-ness and recognizing ourselves as the little droplet as well as the whole ocean.

Accepting the reality of how things are is real and truthful.

Being okay with reality is the work of yoga. Being present with what is real right now is yoga. As my wise teacher Swami Shantananda always says, ‘You will never win an argument with reality’. So I guess that means we might as well accept it!

Fantasizing about some other moment somehow being better than the one you have takes you away from the present and into mind-generated fantasy.

There is nothing wrong with using your mind, that is one of the tools you have to live your life.

But thinking that there is a fantastical life where everything is somehow better than it is now waiting for you some time in the future – that is pure fantasy.

That is not real. Reality is accepting the life you have right now. The circumstances you are in right now. That is where you do the work of Yoga. That is where you can find freedom in everyday life.

Much more meaning than is teased out here can be taken from these cards, this is just a start. I’d love your feedback and look out for my blog about the next card soon.

You can purchase your own set of these contemplation cards from the store HERE and also my book Yoga off the mat, freedom in everyday life HERE and postage is free in Australia.

The gorgeous original picture on the front of each card is by Gayle Stone Art.

Drop the ‘me’ and just BE

A series of blogs arising from picking a Contemplation card from my deck

‘Me’ is so familiar to us that we don’t see it as an entity that the mind has created.

It feels so real to relate as ‘me’, yet it is a package of thought processes. That is hard to comprehend.

When we drop the ‘me’ that the mind has created, maybe we can experience ‘being’ without the mental overlay, without description.

Aaaaah, peace, bliss.

Ezra Bayda tells a story in ‘At home in the muddy water’ where a zen student says to the master ‘There is something terribly wrong with me. I think I’m a dog’. The master asks how long he has had that thought, to which the student answers ‘Ever since I was a puppy’.

We can see how ridiculous it is to believe this idea of being a puppy and a dog, it is easy to see how thinking doesn’t reflect what is real, yet we find it hard to recognise that the thoughts we believe about ‘me’ or abut things happening ‘to me’ are equally misplaced.

We are often not even aware of our deeply held beliefs.

These beliefs, including the mind-constructed ‘me’, can keep us unaware of our Self, of our own true nature.

We are conditioned from a young age into this fundamental mis-identification. The work on this spiritual path is to realize the whole of your self and see where ‘me’ fits in. Just a mind invention, useful in communication, not as important as we think!

Of course the mind is useful, it is a great tool for living life. Use it for what it can do. When it comes to meditation, or realising the truth of who you are, the best thing to do is to drop back from the thinking mind, and have the experience of being. Aaaah, so peaceful and expansive.

In class we have used this as a mantra to take us to meditation, it seemed to work well.

Give it a try and let me know how you go, repeating over and over to yourself, ‘Drop the ‘me’ and just BE’.

You can purchase your own set of these contemplation cards from the store HERE and postage is free in Australia. The picture on the front of each card is by Gayle Stone Art. Much more meaning than is teased out here can be taken from these cards, this is just a start. I’d love your feedback and look out for my blog about the next card soon