The ultimate act of will is the act of releasing your will in the conversation with the Universe, Creation, God, or simply things that be. This final culmination of will and knowledge is known in yoga as Ishvara pranidhana. If yoga is anything, it is that conversation with what is real and practical in our lives and that which is ethereal. It is working up the courage to and knowing yourself enough to then finally step off the edge of the cliff and only when you begin to fall to you find your wings.
Ishvara pranidhana means to reach out your hand into the darkness and ask to know it. It is asking to be known deeper by what is in the darkness, the unknown. It is stepping out onto surfaces that you are not sure will hold your weight as you keep your fierce gaze at that which you love.
In this wonderful place, we allow our internal achiever to take a break and open up to simply being. And in the cosmic chess game of existence, we pause for a moment and allow for that which is larger than ourselves to make a move. And with this act of letting go, what we thought we knew about ourselves, what we planned on for our existence, doesn't seem to matter much anymore. The divine opens us up and we've discovered something new and magical about ourselves and the world, something exponentially greater than our previous conception.
There is a faith in loving fiercely the one who is rightfully yours, especially if you have waited years and especially if part of you never believed you could deserve this loved and beckoning hand held out to you this way.
I am thinking of faith now and the testaments of loneliness and what we feel we are worthy of in this world.
Years ago in the Hebrides I remember an old man who walked every morning on the grey stones to the shore of the baying seals,
who would press his hat to his chest in the blustering salt wind and say his prayer to the turbulent Jesus hidden in the water,
and I think of the story of the storm and everyone waking and seeing the distant yet familiar figure far across the water calling to them,
and how we are all preparing for that abrupt waking, and that calling, and that moment we have to say yes, except it will not come so grandly, so Biblically, but more subtly and intimately in the face of the one you know you have to love,
so that when we finally step out of the boat toward them, we find everything holds us, and confirms our courage, and if you wanted to drown you could, but you don't
because finally after all the struggle and all the years, you don't want to any more, you've simply had enough of drowning and you want to live and you want to love and you will walk across any territory and any darkness, however fluid and however dangerous, to take the one hand you know belongs in yours.
Come to class this week and let's practice ways to let go of tension, stress, worry, illness, old ways of being, etc. Open up to the Divine by practicing Ishvarapranidhana.