Fast food. Late nights up. Partying with friends. Skipping 8 glasses of water
If you’re anything like me some of the above are a part of your regular life. As much as we are being told that certain medications, body contusion via yoga, and chakra clearing is a way to personal enlightenment, I don’t believe it’s the only way.
Will these practices help? Possibly.
Are the necessary? Possibly not.
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Depending on how you view things, we’ve been enlightened beings our entire lives. Our bodies haven’t stopped us from gaining knowledge, spiritual experiences, and notions all of our own. Nothing about how many days you attend ‘Hot Yoga’ is the key to enlightenment. For some, enlightenment is just another state of consciousness like sleep walking or even deeper sleep states. In my opinion, it has nothing to do with the physical body.
There is no key to enlightenment. You are the door, you must simply open yourself to it.
What is enlightenment really? It is the realization of true identity of yourself (i.e “I”). What does various meditation, yoga, prayer, and other means of taking care of/discovering our bodies really mean? These are all things that seem necessary for a body that is actually under strain or distress, not for one that is needs enlightenment. They seem more like remedies than cures–band aids for wounds we can’t see with our eyes.
Meditation–Quiet an anxious mind
Yoga–Release tension in the body
Chakra clearing–Re-aligning mind and body
What does this mean?
The only real way to attain any enlightenment starts with oneself and I believe it should include the relaxation of both the mental and physical kinds. Our bodies, with as complex as they are, still are pretty simple. Our bodies need food, water, and rest. Everything else seems to be a by-product of the emotional see-saw we participate in on a daily basis.
We all have stresses about the future, regrets about the past and anxiety about the unknown.
However, we are actually living in the now, so all of these things manifest into a variety of traumas felt in our bodies and minds. When we laugh or cry this is the most natural way our body relaxes and releases whatever tension and stresses it has been holding on to. These daily human interactions, experiences, and thoughts are what can truly stop one from reaching a level of enlightenment they are seeking.
So what can you do?
Honor your body–all parts of it. Don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t get to meditate for a certain amount of time—instead ask: Was I happy? And if you miss a few yoga classes what’s the point of fretting? How does your body feel? Did you find another way to stretch and relax?
Don’t let anyone, not even us, tell you what enlightenment needs to look like for you. No one else’s standards need to be yours. I’m still very much of the belief that enlightenment starts with a simple thought.
The choice is yours but honor whatever it is you decide and move through it, don’t get stuck behind it. Allow what happens to do so effortlessly, so that your mind doesn’t grow weary and your body knows no tension. Only then will be begin to see with the clarity we’ve had within us all along.