This month the concept of gratitude is everywhere. I’ve felt grateful, but not particularly inspired. I knew I wanted to post something today, and I figured it would be based on the yogic philosophy of santosa, the second of the five niyamas (niyamas are the second of the eight limbs of yoga which refer to personal practices and self care). Santosa means “contentment and gratitude”. So a no-brainer of a platform, right? But everything I came up with just felt rudimentary.
Yesterday during my first of two yoga classes, friend and fellow teacher Cara Yakey ended class by bringing up the concept of aparigraha, one of the yamas (yamas are another limb of yoga which pertain to outward behavior and ethical practices). Aparigraha means “non hoarding,” or as Cara described, “taking only that which is necessary.” A welcome invitation and so applicable as we head into the holiday season. Personally I’m grateful for this “food for thought”, especially when the apple pie hits our table later. Yes…pun is definitely intended.
My best source of inspiration came during my second class yesterday with Vanessa Van Noy, another friend and fellow teacher who rarely ceases to inspire me. Vanessa pointed out, which is true for most, that finding sources of gratitude is probably not that difficult. For me, I live in a beautiful area, have a loving and supportive family, good health…all of my basic needs are met every day and then some. And then some more. I have a lot in life, I know this. Instead of focusing on these things, I am following Vanessa’s lead and asking myself how I can be that source. How might I move forward in thought, speech and action to be someone else’s source of gratitude?
Vanessa, if you’re reading, I hope you don’t mind that I am spreading your wise words. I only borrow from the best! Anyone else reading this today, thank you…I am grateful. Find abundance of peace, joy and love on this day and always. Happy Thanksgiving.