I think I have always had a natural inclination to spirit – to wondering about this experience of life. I was very isolated when young and didn’t really fit in to any group which gave me loads of time to watch and think. I moved to a Catholic School in grade 4 and would arrive early in the morning and while others were chatting and socialising I was in the church by myself kneeling in prayer and facing Mary or Jesus pleading for them to make sense of all this. During Mass I was told that I could ask for stuff which was a revelation (and totally changed my natural way of relating to them as sources of truth) and so I asked them to help me win a cross country race! I promised that if I won – I would always come to church and would do whatever they wanted whenever they wanted…
I won – by a really strange amount….Nearly 1km (I wasn’t that good!) and suddenly became popular and at the centre of social school life as a result, my ‘reflective’ time was removed. I became lost in regular life but was always a little odd and would blow situations up without knowing why at the time (an impulse to be left alone so I could do what was natural – to reflect on ‘why am I here’) and this continued until recently. I was lost in the wilderness for many years, questioning and yearning totally detached from source yet not understanding how fundamental this was to my very existence.
I finally turned once again in my early 20’s to my maker to make a deal…’you have 3 days to get me out of here otherwise I will end it – I’m out, finished and don’t want to live anymore – if you have a plan for me save me otherwise let me go’. It was at the realisation that I was addicted yet psychotic from excessive drug use and after a week bender of no sleep and too much of everything (drugs, psychic attacks, hallucinations, family fallouts etc.), I went to my quiet place (the toilet) and there I found a cockroach who was my only friend. I saw myself in it and it in me – we wanted to be friends but the judgements kept us separated and finally I saw how desolate, lost and alone I was. This was not living and I wanted out! Within 2 days I got a call from my mother who I hadn’t spoken to for ages (her daughter was killing herself and she had to stand by and watch – AWFUL) and she said we should spend the day in the country and go for a ride (we grew up on a farm with horses and at one point they were my world). I jumped at the chance and arrived at a rehab where she told me I was not coming home – I stayed for 2 years where I found yoga and saw myself for the first time in years. I started to remember that I was heard; seen and loved by something…I was not alone.
I find it sad that there is currently no place in our society to explore, navigate or develop our internal world – our deeper connection to ourselves and that if we feel impelled to do this it is seen as strange or odd particularly if you are young (like really young – under 10 and yet in India they say aspirants should take Diksha from 7 as this is the right time to start structured practices and inquiry) …. We worship and seek the external and if you are too inside – something is wrong but we fail to see or address the connection that something is missing and it shows up with 1 in 5 people suffering from depression requiring medication – that is tragic. While not all introverts are devotional or desiring union, I found this video a really lovely approach to supporting all our differences:
The more I practice and commit to yoga the more I find myself with more clarity, compassion, purpose and I want more. I decided it was time for no more distractions, no more flights of fancy that were temporarily appealing but that ultimately lead me away from why I am here (which I still don’t know but will spend my considerable focused energy in coming to know so that I can be of some use/ service). In December 2012, I had a conversation with my maker once more under the full moon and again struck a deal!
This time I have committed and devoted myself to being a vehicle to be used as is best served – if that’s in a life of renunciation within the Ashram then I will go wholeheartedly but if that is in the world…then stop me! If you need me in ‘regular’ life to serve, love and give then give me a reason or purpose that is not of my own making (not from my feeble and changeable desires) – that comes from grace and flows into my life with such clarity that I am unable to refute it and that helps develops me toward union. Oh and of course I have given a time frame – I am open minded, open hearted and my soul is alert for 1 year to see which way I should go (it takes time to align planets you know!) – if nothing, I will make the decision to move to the ashram indefinitely.
So this where I stand! I practice, I learn, I teach and I love with no attachment in either direction. I trust and believe that I am loved, seen and useful and as a result what will serve both me and the greater good will unfold as it should. I am complex and therefore my needs, love and life are unlikely to run main stream (however if they do and I end up with a station wagon (heaven forbid), picket fence and a family then so be it….though this would be karmically hilarious) – I have no expectations of structure or form and will work with whatever comes…This is my dharma which I have committed to completely and for the remainder of my life.
I am yours – now and always x