Wednesday, August 22, 2007

In The End There Is Always A Beginning.

We are preparing to leave Mysore, our home for the past eight months. We have one week left in India before returning to Calgary, Canada, where we will begin to reintegrate into North American life after our last three years living abroad. As our time here starts to draw to a close, it seems natural to reflect upon the friendships we've made and the experiences we've had.

It is difficult to put into words all the changes we have been through, the places we've seen, or the people we've met. Each person and place has imprinted their own uniqueness upon our hearts, and dance through our memories in beautiful colors. We will probably only realize how much we have changed and grown once we are placed against the familiar background of the city we left and again return to.

We attended a beautiful concert here in Mysore last Friday performed by Nick Evans and Colin Zak. There was a wonderful feeling in the air. So many students gathered to listen to their friends sing and play together, and enjoy a night of dinner and communion with each other. It was a fabulous evening. The last song they played summed up the general sentiments of all who were present: “The power of love, a force from above… healing our souls.” The presence of love was palpable in the air.

This is one aspect of being in Mysore that we will miss the most as we start our journey back to the West - the bonds of the friendships we’ve made here are strong. They are fortified in the intensity of this practice, and forged through our sweat, tears, struggles, and triumphs every morning. As we strive to create yoga within ourselves, we find that we’ve also established a deeper connection and union with others.

So although we realize you can never really say goodbye to those you love, we will give a big hug, and say, “see you around” to many amazing people as we leave. We will have time for one last chai at our favorite “dirty dog” chai stand, and remind ourselves that every ending is only a porthole that opens into a new beginning.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

A Goddess of Magic, Love and Life.

Some images of Mother India.

May she inspire us to believe in magic, to love unconditionally, and to live as though there were no tomorrow.

For I am the first and the last
I am the venerated and the despised
I am the prostitute and the saint
I am the wife and the virgin
I am the mother and the daughter
I am the arms of my mother
I am barren and my children are many
I am the married woman and the spinster
I am the woman who give birth and she who never procreated
I am the consolation for the pain of birth
I am the wife and the husband
And it was my man who created me
I am the mother of my father
I am the sister of my husband
And he is my rejected son
Always respect me
For I am the shameful and the magnificent one

Hymn to Isis, third or fourth century BC,
Discovered in Nag Hammadi

Isis is the moon goddess of Egyptian mythology. Like Mother India, she is an expression of the inherent power of the divine feminine. She embodies great strength and a fierce spirit. She holds a capacity to love deeply, to give life and take it away, and represents the source of sustenance and protection for all of humanity.

May we allow her presence to nurture our hearts and minds as we live, love, learn, grow, and practice peace in our daily lives.

Jai Ma!
Victory and praise to the Divine Mother!