Dwelling in One’s True Nature

Just landed in Dubai. Travelled at least one mile on foot and train to connecting flight to Chicago. Lots of bling here that looks blingier under bright lights. Per the advice of my guru, going to get rid of cow-dunged Indian shoes and replace them with new ones I bought in Rishikesh.

People rarely go beyond “Yoga citta vrtti nirodhah” to the third sutra in the Yoga Sutras. If they would just go one more sutra and they’d find: “Then the seer dwells in his own nature.” Work toward the peaceful mind single-pointedness and what you truly are will emerge. For me, that true self is compassion. I will never reach the point where I totally eclipse my ego and end up in some kind of trance living yet connected primal unity. That kind of primal unity, sadly, is beyond me. My bridge to primal unity, which I shall never cross I believe, is compassion. Compassion takes me away as far away from my ego as I’ll ever go. In the same way I won’t be able to do the unsupported headstand (no hands on ground), so I won’t be able enter the be absorbed in primal unity while I yet live. This is one of the long list of deficiencies I have, including mechanical ineptitude, slow-twitching muscles, a bad ear for foreign languages, not eating and drinking slowly enough, being judgmental, and not helping out enough at home in the cooking department.

What can I do somewhat effectively? Feel for others. I have not talked much about the classes and my final presentations in Hatha and Vinyassa. Now I will. They were a bizarre mix of Thoreau, postmodernism, anatomy, Tantra, postmodernism, pedantry, Vaudeville, random allusions to current events, hip-hop, and rather coarse humor. Just being myself in other words. In the critiques, several students told me that being myself helped them be themselves. Perhaps that is what my teaching for the past 32 years has been about—perhaps that what my life has been about: to put myself out there so others can do the same. That is my best expression of compassion. When the fluctuations in my mind subside, that apparently is my true nature. This is my yoga and where my Um slowly transforms into OM.

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