Flipping through the copious beautiful quotes in Yoga Gems for inspiration, I found the perfect reminder for myself of one of the goals of the yogic path.
This is the ironic nature of spiritual realization. As we progress spiritually, we begin to see how we, ourselves, are the primary and ultimate cause of our own sorrows. Paradoxically, this is good news! It means that we can also be the cause of our relief, our release, and our happiness. –
I know this. I believe this. I have experienced this in the past. It sounds so simple but is extremely difficult to implement. Anger is such a powerful force, it clouds everything.
There is injustice in the world. There are hurtful people. Bad things happen. Our power is in our reaction – not allowing that action to break us down into less than who we are. No one causes us to feel anger, we choose to be angry and we can choose not to be angry. This is no easy feat. Anger can feel so good. It’s a drug with a quick high but a long, slow, destructive low. Who it affects the most, who is hurts the most, is ourselves.
Releasing from anger is a deep liberation. Then we can focus. And that focus can lead to great things as well as our own peace. The goal of yoga is peace.
Discerning our reactions to the outside world and how they affect us is the beginning of the path to diffusing those effects. Looking deeper at the root causes of anger takes us into further understanding. Compassion is the key to unlocking the heart and letting go of the chains we have imprisoned ourselves in.
Allowing ourself to let go of the anger doesn’t mean an injustice wasn’t done and it doesn’t mean we disengage from the world – it simply means we are better able to interact with the world – in peace. We can see clearly where disconnects lie, miscommunication, misunderstandings. We can remain objective, be helpful, and remain at peace within ourselves. We can save ourselves and in doing so bring more peace into the world.