Shine And Sparkle
The celebration of America’s Birthday inspired my reflection on independence and freedom. Simply by living in this beautiful country, we are offered an innate freedom. But in continued thought, I realized over time we experience pressure to conform to high-standard cultural ideals. We live in a society filled with pressure to continuously achieve…in everything.
Achieve in career and ambition. Achieve in relationships and love. Achieve in physical appearance and image.
And so, the very same country granting us freedom begins to strip it away slowly due to comparison and competition amongst society in the race to meet these cultural ideals. Inevitably, we become heavy balls of stress and tension muddling though life with our guard up. Afraid we will fail. Afraid we will not measure up.
But on a yoga mat, freedom exists again. There is nothing to achieve, nothing to master. All comparison and competition creating limits is removed. With loving-kindness in our hearts, we are given a chance to freely learn and explore our independent selves in mind and body.
Freedom is usually thought of as freeing oneself from something – pain, fear, sorrow, attachment, or even ego. Ego limits our freedom most. When we let go of it, we become free of doubt, judgment, and expectation. We then stop building physical limits realizing all bodies and bones are different. We remove mindless limits hindering responsiveness. Our thoughts, ideas, and beliefs influence not only the way we perceive things, but also the way we act.
"We are all living in cages with the door wide open."
True freedom is freedom of action. It is responding openly to the joys and challenges of every living moment. It is not discovered in meeting or beating cultural ideals, but rather in breaking free from the patterns limiting what we believe is achievable. It is okay to fail, okay to fall. It is then our ego is freed and we can powerfully get back up and continue learning and exploring. The more limits we push through, the more positive energy is released in our mind and body.
Simply put, we have freedom to choose to fill our lives with peace, happiness, and love. Live every day freely…and shine and sparkle like a beautiful firework.