Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Niyama: Tapasya (austerity)

As I write this blog post, the thought pops into my head:  "who are you to write about austerity?"  Some days, I think I live a simple life.  We have no children, no tv, no debt.  I feel very content most of the time, especially concerning material things.  I have few wants.  But is my life simple?
Today, I would have to say "no".  Today's to-do list won't fit on the dayplanner page, so I'm having to look at what MUST be done today, and what can wait.  I have spent the day (again) making phone calls to the landlord, the gas company, two different computer guys, and returning phone calls for people who are interested in trying yoga.  I've taught 2 yoga classes, gone to two meetings, cleaned some at the studio, and it's not even 2 pm.  I can't say that's simple.
But that's life these days.  Any of us who don't practice our yoga in a cave somewhere have to deal with the different directions our lives pull us.  We have obligations, responsibilities, and to-do lists.
I think this Niyama is at least partially about how we deal with it all.  Simplicity in life, in knowing our values.  Simplicity in what we know to be True, Right, and worthy of our time and efforts.
When we love something, and devote much of our time to it, I believe that is simplicity.  The things I value most in life are:  God, my husband, my family, Mountain Yoga, my practice, and our numerous pets.  This week, I have made time for each of these.  Not as much as I would like.  But when I look back through my week, I have spent the majority of my time on what I value. 
I believe there's just a little simplicity in that.

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