Sunday, July 12, 2009

Letting go of limited beliefs

Six blind men were curious to know about elephants. So they journeyed to visit an elephant and discover what an elephant really was.

The first blind man leaned against the side of the elephant and said an elephant was like a wall.

The second blind man felt the round, smooth and sharp tusk and concluded the elephant is like a spear.

The third blind man was near the trunk of the elephant. When he held the trunk he decided the elephant was like a snake.

The fourth blind man felt around the knee of the elephant and was convinced the elephant was like a tree.

The fifth blind man was near the ear of the elephant and upon exploring the ear remarked that the elephant was like a fan.

The sixth blind man grabbed the tail of the elephant and was sure the elephant was like a rope.

So the blind men argued about what an elephant was like and could not agree because each person had experienced a different part of the elephant and being blind they could not see the whole elephant.

How many times have we had this similar experience? We are all blind to a certain extent.We are often blind to the possibilities of another point of view, of another truth. We see what we experience and what is closest to us. The whole reality is often not what we believe.

How can we change that? How can we be open to the realities of others that may be their known truth? Looking at life from a particular perspective can predispose one toward perceptual error - toward seeing the partial truth as the whole truth.

In our yoga practice we may think a pose is complete. But have we explored all aspects and angles of the pose? Have we followed the breath? Have we created a strong foundation? Do we feel inner and outer expansion? Do we feel softness? Can we go deeper? Are we honoring our edges? There are many aspects that make a yoga pose fuller and more complete.

What is yoga? Is it just the breath? Is it just the physical poses? Is it meditation? Is it relaxing? Is it powerful? Is it connecting with a Divine power?

Yoga is a union of many things that may appear to be opposites. But these opposites together bring us closer to the true experience of yoga. Yoga extends beyond the mat into our daily lives. Practicing yoga on the mat is a vehicle for transformation in our daily lives.

Ask yourself: How complete is my Reality? The path to knowledge is like the layers of an onion. Each layer unfolds to a new layer, a new point of view. We need to let go of our limited view points to see the bigger picture. Just as one blind man's experience of the tail is not the whole elephant, our experiences are just part of the unlimited aspects of existence. Open your hearts and minds to the infinite possibilities that exist in each moment and allow more of the big picture of life to reveal itself to you.

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