“By construction, the fulfillment of a woman is motherhood; and motherhood does not mean that she gets pregnant and delivers a baby. If you understand her total behavior, you will understand her motherhood. Her motherhood is service, her motherhood is sacrifice, her motherhood is relationship. When she knows motherhood, she is fulfilled.” – Yogi Bhajan
Värskele emadele on võimalik tulla koos oma lapsega joogatamas. Sellel sügisel alustame 14. november, kokku 5 tundi, neljapäeviti kl 10-11.
See on väga ülendav kogemus lapsele ning emadele suurepärane võimalus oma kodune rutiinist välja tulla ja olla teiste emade seas, kellel on samad küsimused ja mured kui sinulgi ning tuleme üheskoos et omavahel toetada ning tõsta oma vibratsioonid et meil oleks beebidele ja perele jaksu.
Rohkem infot Beebi ja emme jooga tundide kohta SIIT
This is the title of a set of Yogi Bhajan’s lectures back in the 1970’s or 80’s. I don’t remember exactly and as I am writing from bed with Theo in my arms I don’t bother searching.
The oriental woman in contrast with the western woman. That’s what he meant. As he came to teach in the west, America and Europe, in this respect is practically the same. Values of women have been completely lost. Maybe it was in the process of industrialization, feminization, globalization, capitalism and all those evil zations and isms out there.
Yogi Bhajan ( I prefer to call him el Maestro), el Maestro taught us to be like the oriental woman. He told us we should be like the oriental woman. But what he meant it remains unclear, and as I travel the world I always ask again and again what he meant by that. I get all sorts of answers, yet I know in my intuition exactly what he meant, but it’s too hard for many to take.
El Maestro was an advocate of women. He hated to see how we had downgraded and sold ourselves as sexual objects called ‘chicks’ instead of the powerful and graceful eagles we could become. He would teach women day after day how we should value ourselves by being a woman instead of trying to be something else, instead if going out there and search for everything. Things will search for you when you are a woman.
The oriental woman has one characteristic which I haven’t found in either American or European cultures, getting also lost in Mexico and all over the world. It is the virtue of devotion. It is a virtue which makes life soft, beautiful, divine, loving. A virtue you cannot understand or perceive fully if you don’t have a beloved to which devote yourself. This devotion I am speaking about is a divine devotion, which bridges that incredible dark gap we have in longing to belong. This hole- sometimes it is very real and physical in the chest- is something we all experience as a desire to belong. Some more than others, but it is part of coming into this life, being born and separated from that oneness, and becoming human. Nobody escapes that longing. You can call it a human condition. We all want to feel again whole, being part of that clan, that heaven which we once knew. Suffering comes when we either negate that longing or we cannot find our beloved or belonging to which belong. There is a metaphore of the wife/bride looking for his husband/groom and when she cannot find him she cries in despair, lost in the dark night, hopeless and broken. That is the state in which our soul looks for being completed, being happy, being whole. The soul inside of each of us yearns to be part of that Infinite it once knew, and here in this game called “earth” we come to find the way to do that. To win by playing within the rules. To defeat the game by playing by the rules.
So in this game, devotion comes in handy. It has the power to connect us with that beloved, that infinite, to set our anchor in the right place, to place an altar to that infinity, to realise that our wisdom has a purpose, and so we can feel Whole and One once more. In life, constantly. Not be lost like that soul bride in an empty bed. To feel the joy of being part of the One, that one which is actually inside of you, but in order to connect we need to find a path, an inspiration which will remind us of that light within. Technically, most religions started that way, to reflect that wisdom and connect you with an image of that inner reality. Many got lost in the way, but devotion is something that at least in some way has remained- in the oriental woman. The oriental woman as I see her, and as I am inspired by (and this is an image, may not be related to geographical surroundings or any “orient” in particular, but who said that El Maestro meant any geographical location?) is humble, is serviceful to her husband (her real husband but mostly her divine husband), is always accompanying her husband and walking softly behind him. She is a subtle inspiration, a light breeze which blows softly in the twilight, pointing to the right direction of the way. She is that woman who gracefully and patiently waits for her husband to awaken, making him lovingly food every day. She is that woman who is constantly in prayer, living in compassion and acting with kindness with everyone and in every situation. She is not in contradiction with a strong woman, in fact, she is stronger and steadier than any screaming and pounding woman. For her strength lies in her wit, in her inner wisdom, in her forgiveness, in her vibration, in her prayer. She devotes time for herself in deep meditation, sometimes while still serving others. That is the fulfillment of her self as a woman. And that is the highest blessing we women can awaken. It does not mean that we are not strong, powerful entrepreneurs or global women, it is not in contradiction. The same way she is a warrior when giving birth, she is a warrior without having to be in the frontline of battle. We don’t have to choose between one or the other. What we do have to choose is to do it consciously, by choice and not by imposition.
As a woman, just know that your power is a subtle one, and your light will shine through your service for others. The more lights you can awaken, the more your prayer works. Without that you have to move an inch.
This is probably the most important thing I have learnt from the master about parenting. Although he said it directly only a few times, this concept resonates within all of Yogiji’s teachings on parenting.
And it is actually a very simple idea, easy to remember, yet takes a lot of courage and practice to apply. I like to call it god-like parenting.
In your parenting, act like god. Talk to your children like god would talk to them, heave like god, dress like god, act like god, love like god, forgive like god, be compassionate like god, be humble like god, graceful, radiant and patient like god.
But what does that mean exactly? Well, to me god is the existence beyond any limitations. It is the limitless, infinite, liberated part of me (and of each and every one) that escapes all descriptions, all faults and flaws, in one word- all limits. In other woes, god is the experience of the infinite within. That vast source of ecstasy, of boundless love, strength, courage, and all qualities you find in the realm of the higher self. God, in a way, is the exponential potential you, your great potential expanded exponentially.
So to say that as a parent (or as a person really! In all your actions) you must be patient like god, it means that your patience must not be limited. This is easily brought to light many times having a nursing toddler who is tossing and turning trying to fight imminent sleep. Just remain patient when you feel your patience reaches a limit, just reach out for your god-like backpack of infinite patience. And believe me, it works.
And do the same with each and every quality you attach to the word god.
Do not believe me, just try it.
You will surprise yourself of how great, magnificent, kind and graceful you can be.
In humble service of the divine within all,
This week has been a great test of grit, character and endurance. It all started in ah honourable setting sharing the teaching space with Shiv Charan Singh. We had the last six days of kundalini yoga teacher training and I was to teach the last two. Few days before that I fell ill with a strange flu virus. Spent some time recovering and some time in the teaching space, my time was now to teach. I did not question it for a second. I tuned into the golden chain and surrendered my head, my aching and feverish body into the flow of teachings. Although my voice was not the best, and
my head not the brightest, I allowed myself to accept that state and be grateful for it. In any situation, that’s the first thing to do. Thank god for this virus. It gives me an opportunity to reconsider my present, to be in tune with my biological body, to settle down, to simplify, to bring down any masks, to be authentic.
Any challenge brings forth an opportunity to reevaluate.
And each reevaluation can bring a hidden treasure.
That is what Shiv Charan Singh means in his sutra “from virus to virtue”: to turn around misery into opportunity, disease into healing beyond the physical, from the dust to the blessing of that dust in my forehead.
Yogiji said we should always live in an attitude of gratitude. Every situation, turn it into a virtue. See the good side: thank you for this wonderful blissful virus!
Blessi gs to all
In humble service to the divine
Becoming a mother is an act of surrendering. During the first months of the pregnancy, the psyche experiences a partition, an energetic and pranic division when the “I” no longer exists as it has been before, and it gives into the “you” or “we”. When the mother focuses her consciousness and can lovingly and humbly give her prayer to the child, that partition becomes a “thou”. During birth, the first and most physical separation between mother and child begins, leading into the second division of spiritual bodies and marks a path into the consciousness of the woman and child. If the mother is meditating, conscious and they experience a loving birthing process, the sacrifice of giving up the “I” into the “Thou” is smooth and conscious. The bond is created and reinforced by closeness, complete peace and a calm and elevating, loving environment (supported by father and other loved ones) in which mother and baby can totally be skin to skin, with the mother’s milk being the new physical link between mother and child, uninterrupted and without scheduling.
The first months of life are laying the fundament for a lifetime. They shall not pass lightly. Specially for first time mothers, the act of surrendering becomes strong during this time. Lack of sleep, complete dedication into the child’s needs, giving up the ego-self and the life she had before are a big challenge which needs to be faced in a conscious and loving embrace.
In the contemporary society, the act of surrendering has got a negative connotation, usually related to history where we were imposed a sacrifice by a regime, a ruling party or religious authority. True sacrifice and surrendering comes from the wish of the soul to merge with the divine, and is an act of love and compassion.
There are many ways of describing this state of surrendering: Sacrificing the ego for the light in the soul, surrendering to the higher self, obeying the truth in all, trusting one’s destiny, humbly accepting and agreeing to what the universe brings us, and seeing them all as gifts in our spiritual growth.
Guru Nanak wrote a very beautiful description of this surrendering in four paurees or stanzas of the JapJi Sahib (12-15):
Your state of consciousness cannot be described when you surrender and agree with your path and destiny. Anyone who tries to describe this will be sorry he tried. There is no paper, no pen, no writer who can sit and reflect on this. Such is the Naam, it makes you pure. If you surrender and agree, you gain experience and align your mind with your soul. (12)
When you surrender, you gain the power to listen and intuition comes. When you surrender, you gain all the wisdom of the universes and realms. When you surrender, you will not be slapped on the face and you will be respected. When you surrender, you will not die into this world. Such is the Naam, it makes you pure. If you surrender and agree, you gain experience and align your mind with your soul. (13)
When you surrender, no obstacles will come your way. When you surrender, you will go home with honor and radiance. When you surrender, you will not wander in worldly paths. When you surrender, you embrace the Dharma. Such is the Naam, it makes you pure. If you surrender and agree, you gain experience and align your mind with your soul. (14)
When you surrender, you find the door to liberation (your 10th gate opens) When you surrender, your family is liberated and goes across with you. When you surrender, you cross over the world ocean taking the Guru’s Sikhs with you. Oh Nanak! When you surrender, you do not wander as a beggar. Such is the Naam, it makes you pure. If you surrender and agree, you gain experience and align your mind with your soul. (15)
My experience during the first six months of Theo’s life in this earth was the most intense surrendering. It was an act of love, and a conscious decision to surrender and become his guide. It was not an easy task, specially to let go of what I was, what I am and what I will be, as an individual, as a professional and as a teacher, in order to gain a new level of experience in the consciousness towards the divine. Sometimes, when I thought that this job as a mother was “useless”, e.g. holding sleeping Theo in my arms (for endless hours!) when I could be doing something more “useful”, I brought myself back into consciousness and inner focus, to let go of these thoughts (let them be) and find the bliss in obeying my destiny and lesson in the moment. On this last pauree (15) of surrendering, Guru Nanak gives the key to it all: you are liberated, not in your fantasy of escaping the reality, but it is a full liberation of your soul.
If motherhood (and babyhood) seems sometimes as a prison, that condition is a gift, since it is challenging the ego, which always wants to run away, to do and do and do, and escape the present moment. It is a gift given to connect with the soul and the real meaning of life. Nanak gave us the path of the householder, and it is while being a householder, a housewife, a mother, whatever you want to call it, that we can be liberated from our attachments to this worldly illusions and be deathless in our soul, touch others with this light of consciousness and radiate.
Sat nam dear family,
I have been lately so concerned on getting Theo to sleep well, trying to analyse different methods for baby sleep (cry it out, no-cry sleep solution, all kinds of advice..) without really feeling that any of these is the one that works for us (didnt even feel like trying out any). It has been really hard to get him to sleep lately, taking over an hour and he’s whining, eventually crying… Today I found the key.
He is sound asleep after 20 minutes of pure pleasure.
What I did?
I breathed differently, and it all changed. I didnt feel anymore like I wanted to escape from there, I was present with Theo and enjoyed putting him to sleep, and I was there voluntarily instead of feeling like dragged in to do it. And I felt intuitive and creative enough to make up a new fun sleep routine which we both enjoyed.
This new routine was: go to bed, dim the lights, sing our lullaby (while continuing with the rest until he sleeps) change diapers, massage with lavender oil, put pijamas on, (allow him to be and move while doing all this, all this time I was consciously expanding and coming down into my grounds mentally and physically), breastfeed, after a while he didnt want to breastfeed anymore, sat up and played a little bit (and I allowed it calmly which was something I didnt do before, and it was great – he actually always sees and tries to reach the water bottle so I decided we “put the bottle to sleep” together), then I laid him on the bed and pat him from head down to his toes while singing for a good 3 minutes (not just 5 times… to let his energy down, and I saw him start to calm down), and breastfeed again, this time after a bit of kicking and moving around he settled down calmly and sound asleep after a few minutes.
It was all a combination of what I did physically and mostly what I did energetically. I changed my feeling of “wanting to be somewhere else” (having 10s other things to do waiting for me: emails, work, dinner…) into choosing to be in the moment with him and enjoy it. That was it. That was the golden key which I had been looking for!
Your baby wants you to be present. All babies need physical contact and all are fighting to get it, thats why they wake up at night, want to be carried and held, play with you, sleep close to you. Since our minds are somewhere else, we are not fully present with our children they get our presence only partially, and they keep yearning for more. The moment you start giving (constantly) full presence, the less your baby will be needy for you and the less you will feel dragged into the parenthood and everyday duties. When we give only partial presence to our babies (and also to husband, even to ourselves!) they become needy, whiny and grumpy. We are actually teaching them that in life, you can only give partial attention and presence to others, so they start acting the same way. The challenge lies in accepting and living the full presence of oneself, which at the beginning can be scary (am I really that great and divine? can I really just be and not do-do-do all the time?), and as we start expanding that awareness more and more into every day, into each breath, the simpler all gets.
As easy as a baby sleeping (parents will recognise the paradox in this)
The breath that helped me was to inhale while expanding into myself (if visualizing my lungs and chest grow sideways, not vertically), and exhaling coming back inside (like a reverse fountain, downwards and into my core/ground, not exhaling my soul out and up away from my body). Hard the first few times, but I started to enjoy it more and more and Im sure this is something that will stick to me for the rest of my life.
The hardest practice is not to run away.Can you BE while doing all the things you do? Can you dedicate your life to being present, regardless of where, what or how you are?
Such is my prayer that you and I live in constant applied awareness
In humble service,
My son Theo will soon be three months old. Life has become completely different since he arrived, of course a lot more demanding and full of responsibilities, and blessed with new light and an opportunity for us to relive life and discover all it has to offer.
Today Theo has been immersed in the discovery of his hands. he spent all morning just looking – or I should say contemplating deeply – at them. He just held them on the air as long as he could and would look at one and the other. All the time both hands were in really tight fists and motionless. Just concentrated on the one thing of realising that those interesting tools were his own, and that he could move (and squeeze) at will. Thats I guess what a baby in deep meditation looks like. He even did not want to be held, which is rare.
As we get used to our hands, our bodies, manners and habits, we humans tend to forget how amazing the tools we have been given are. And such simple yet key realisations, like Theo today, are big steps in understanding our surroundings, ourselves, and life. May our days be filled with such illuminating moments throughout our lives, so we remain fresh, alive, healthy, learning and in love.
Motherhood is actually the chance to practice all I believe in, going beyond the thinking of what others might think, and diving deeply into the seed and the soul of my child. The more I can teach him by my own centeredness, zooming in and out from the 1 to the 10, from the situation into the big picture and viceversa, realising of the situation. Parenting is when children reflect the mirror of what we show them. And motherhood (as pregnancy, childhood, adulthood, and well, LIFE)is the time to keep in mind (and meditate on) the nine treasures:
2 loyalty and devotion
4 selfless service
and also, the 10th hidden treasure behind all, which is courage