Tag Archives: separation

On death and dying in life

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other—that man, that woman, that child is my brother or my sister.” – Mother Theresa

Sat nam dear family,
Last weekend in the Kundalini yoga teacher training level 1 I was sharing the teachings on death. A question came up for which I was not prepared and my answer was not very deep. Since then I want to elaborate more on my own experiences with death, and I take this opportunity to share it with all of you.

I die every day with every breath. Every night before going to bed, I prepare myself to die. I let go of every thing, every experience that happened in the day. I die when I allow these to take over: all my thoughts, all my praises, all my glory and my shame, all my errors and shortcomings, all my lessons to learn, all my attachments, all my ego, my greed, my anger and my desires. My limited self dies when I let go of these.

I died many times when as a young brave fearless woman committed many mistakes. I am forever thankful to my Guru for keeping me under his protection in these times. I died little deaths every day when I retreated from the world, either by disgust or by unconformity with this world, with the reality of how it is structured and the banality under which it runs. I die every moment I see injustice and all I can do is trust Guru takes care of it.

I grieve, oh I grieve for that comfort zone, for that ignorance which is sweet and does not question anything. I grief and remember how life was so easy being unconscious. When I wouldn’t challenge myself every day to become a better person. When I would just be a passive animal wandering in the earth without purpose nor connection to the me within me.

I died along with my precious daughter Vida, the moment she left her body as a newborn, far away from me. Oh how I wandered around those blue ethers, acquired a wisdom which is deeper than the deepest ocean. I wandered like a ghost around her memory, around my empty hands and empty womb, around those moments of bliss she brought me. I wandered and found God, Brahm himself, who told me I should come back and live again in this world, celebrate her memory and the futility of life itself, attaching myself a the feet of the Guru where all is forgiven. In every cell of mine, through deep deep pain, I was reshaped. Oh it hurt. Every single cell hurt more than death itself. Every single cell shook and vibrated with an unknown caliber to me. I was reborn into this life, back from where I was left, with a new mission, with a deeper connection to God.

And I forgot. I forgot all these times I died and my mind wandered away with my ego. I did not honour the beauty and the effort of all these beings who helped me die in my limited being so I could live in my limitless self! I was angry to anger itself for ripping me off my most profound experience within this lifetime.

So yes, I have died. I have died and keep on dying until I truly and infinitely die in my ego, die in my selfishness, die in this time and space. I die with every challenge and I am grateful for each one of these deaths. For when I truly go, I will already know the path and will not need to kill each of these inner monsters in those three seconds, when the film of life runs through my eyes.

Yes I die. I die every time I am grateful. I die when I let go of my limitations. I reform myself again and again and again every time I take on a challenge and turn it towards God, coming out victorious in my soul, in my heart and in my infinity.

For peace is found at the end of the path, not at the beginning. To begin with, we need to work, work, work, sweat from work so that we can liberate others with us, when the time comes.

Jinee Naam dhiaaiaa gae masakat ghaal, Naanak te mukh ujlee ketii chhuti naal. 

In humble gratitude to the divine in all,
Sukhdev Kaur

The cleaning lady from my kindergarten

Today I am sharing a personal childhood memory. I’m doing this because it is very vivid, since I have experienced the same through Theo and other children at the daycare center.

Lets go back to Mexico in the 1980s.
Kindergarten. A very beautiful blue building, two actually, surrounding a big playground which had two carrousels, animals you could climb, lots of slides, rings, even a pool. Dreamland. Lots of children who were very happy. And I remember the fence. That metal fence where mama would walk out and sit in the car for hours peeking if I was ok. I don’t remember much of inside of the buildings because I was probably very rarely there. I cried all the time. I didn’t want to go there. I wanted mami. I cried so much, teachers couldn’t take care of me while holding the group. So a very kind lady, the cleaning lady, would spend the mornings holding me and riding the carrousel. I remember her kindness, her compassion, and I don’t remember any of the other teachers, nor much other than that putter playground.
The kindergarten itself was very posh and on the edge of new technologies. That was on the early 80s. I do remember the English classroom. It was on the farther building, on the first floor. There were these big headphones hanging from the ceiling, ones over each chair, and children would put those and listen to (a tape?) the English lessons. It was scary to say the least. But it was high end technology.
Back to the playground. The carrousel. The kind cleaning lady. My sadness, I missed my mami. And she was heartbroken herself she left me there. And I was not a small child, I must have been 4 or 5 years old.
I must say though that my mother was the most caring and loving person I could have asked for. She never left us alone. She was practicing mostly attachment parenting without that term even existing back then. She left her professional life, her whole career behind to stay home with us kids. No blame or guilt intended here whatsoever.

Fast forward to 2013, and my feelings come alive when we are trying out a daycare center with Theo. I stayed with him all morning (we were there for two hours actually), and all this time a little boy, about 2.5 years old, was crying for his mommy. My heart went out to him. Of course, the care takers were in a hard situation, having to deal with him and at the same time take care of all children. And having parents around. The poor boy kept crying until we left, and we left early mostly because my nervous system was so tired from hearing that boy cry. We came home and I slept so deep rejuvenating sleep I needed to heal that inside me.
All te time I felt like reaching out for that boy. Of course he didn’t want that, he wanted mommy. (And I didn’t try, who knows who might feel I’m exceeding the boundaries by hugging a boy). He was clinging into one caretaker, but mostly she was urging him to play or ignoring his cries. And all the other children were looking at him now and then. It was pretty intense.
As a mother, maybe I am too sensitive. Because of how I am, probably influenced also by the fact that I lost my first child. I am extremely compassionate and in any situation I feel the impulse to reach out to those in need.
So I was holding myself today. It was, after all, not my issue. But I did reflect on the fact of how that whole situation is affecting the psyche of that child, the other children, the caretakers and all. It felt to me that that boy, same as me 30 years ago, was not ready to take that step. At the same time, my heart goes to the mother, who was probably in a situation that had to put her child there. And to the caretakers, in such a difficult task.
I do believe strongly that I can express all what I feel. I felt that child’s feelings being neglected, everybody pretending he was not in a deep state of grief. And I don’t want my child to learn such rudeness. Also a little more love from the caretakers could have changed the whole situation. Of a lot more love, which was what the boy needed. A group hug, having all the other children acknowledge what was going on instead of ignoring it, having all children sing to him so he could heal. I thought of making those suggestions but felt it was not my place, as I’m an observer. (Probably I should have). I feel we need a lot more kindness, understanding, reaching out to others in this world. Love, treating others as they are worth, as respected human beings, evermore when they are desperately crying it out for help. They communicate, but we ignore it. They learn that speaking out is useless. So they submit, learn to ignore their emotions, dig them down deep and keep them for themselves. And yes, at some point that child will give up his cries, and prove that we won the battle, but aren’t we the ones who must give up our ideas of how a child must behave? Of how much love or kindness he needs? Aren’t we te ones who are not understanding the signals, when he uses all his might to communicate as a complete human being worth of being listened to? Aren’t we the ones who should stop pretending to ignore and deal creatively and lovingly with every challenging situation?
Instead of telling him “don’t cry, mama will come” (and him waiting for mama for one second, and asking again- *small children don’t have the sense if time as adults do), showing him lovingly “yes, mama is not here, it is very sad, but we are all here for you!”. Maybe it doesn’t work and I’m just stupid, but trying it (for 100 times, not less) doesn’t hurt anyone. In fact it may teach the other children to reach out. And make the day lighter and brighter for everyone.

At the end I listened to my intuition (after all, I am teaching about intuition right!) and have had such a wonderful time together with Theo with no need of daycare or playrooms. At this age, what a child most needs is attention from the close circle (mother and father) and yes, occasionally a babysitter or another playmate who has a fully loaded battery. (That is, beside other kids of course)

Blessings and kindness to every soul,
Sukhdev Kaur

Hold the void

There is an indescribable beauty and sweetness to separation. Be it death, longing, a short departure, it is a very poetic realm of separation that lives and relives every time a situation like this happens. Numerologically speaking, this is the realm of number 2: tension, longing, missing, absence, abyss, black, blues, emotion, organic…
The most beautiful part of that longing is the re-union. It is a joy beyond joys, a fulfillment that impregnates the heart with an infinite love. For this to happen there needs to be a separation. There is no other way.
When we often say goodbye, when we come to visit to Canada or Mexico, My parents always say “in order to meet again, we must leave”. This is just as true as it gets.
That sweetness of leaving implies a void, a fear of using that emptiness inside: “how can I be empty? What will happen to me? How can I fill it as quick as possible?” This is the first reaction of the human. Yet the art of pressing that sweetness from the emptiness is to hold that space of void. To pause. To meditate and contemplate that sacredness, that tension, that separation.
Hold it.
It won’t kill you.
It will make you stronger.
Hold it.
Don’t rush.
Hold it.
Stay still.
Be.
You will receive the treasure hidden behind it all.
And only then a reunion will happen. And the heart will be fulfilled once more, with a nectar so sweet it will pour out from every single one of your pores. If you just stay still.

In gratitude,
Sukhdev Kaur