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The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are.
– Marcus Aurelius
I love this quote because it so simply sums up the philosophy of yoga. First, we must calm the mind, then we can reflect clearly on what really is, seperate from the illusion and ignorance of avidya. But, as always, easier said, than done.
Two things that help me to keep an "untroubled spirit" when I find myself getting caught up in the illusionary drama of a situation.
1. I sit down and breathe a 5/5 ratio 5x (5 breath cycles of an inhale with a count of five and an exhale with a count of five.) If that doesn't work, I do five more rounds...and then another...another, and so on.
2. I think of 5 things that I am grateful for right now at this moment in my life and I think of five things that are going right. (These could be big or small. Sometimes it might be just being grateful that I am not out of milk for my morning coffee, or happiness that I am doing a better job flossing my teeth at night. I am not being cute here. When the chips are down it is important to remember that there are always some small, wonderful things going right and to be grateful for. We need to start there.
Please leave some comments and share some ways that you keep an "untroubled spirit" and a clear view of things as they are.