Welcome to Day 14 of my blog series based on Judith Hansen-Lasater’s “A Year of Living Your Yoga.” While the book has 365 quotes, I picked only 30.
My goal is to stay close to 500 words excluding the quote.
November 7 — Emotions arise when beliefs are challenged. Today notice when you are agitated, or angry, or upset. Then ask yourself: What belief of mine has just been challenged?
Right there. That’s mindfulness and emotional awareness and self-challenge and an invitation to reframing.
Right there, that’s couch time.
Right there, is the first step on the path to enlightenment.
What belief has just been challenged?
So then I ask you: What makes you so smart? What makes you the arbiter of right and wrong? What makes you the authority on whatever Belief you hold to be Truth?
Ok — we can all agree that child abuse is wrong, and that addiction is a scourge, and that several other moral and ethical standards are established.
But aside from that, why should anyone’s get-up of buchanan tartan argyle socks and Black Flag t-shirt, combat boots, nose ring plaid kilt offend you so much? I’m the one who has to wear them. I’m the one who totally doesn’t know if a Dead Kennedys t-shirt goes better with which plaids go with which boots and hey! It’s my “problem.”
Let’s say you’re sitting in traffic and totally pissed about sitting in traffic. Because sitting in traffic is probably the most vexing experience to you. You say you’d rather have a root canal or perform natural child birth than sit in traffic.
What’s the belief that’s been challenged? That other people should get out of your way?
Here’s me: You get out of your way.
I think one of the saddest things of all is expending an amount of energy comparable to having a baby over having to sit in traffic. I mean … really.
But then there’s my belief that is challenged: that I shouldn’t have a consideration or care about what other people think of traffic. If Bipsy wants to shred her energy and amp up her adrenaline response, charge up her cortisol, which builds fat around her organs, including her heart, liver, and spleen, and tax her glandular systems bitchingandmoaning about traffic, who am I to stop her?
GO FOR IT, BIPSY!
I’m in. Just don’t expect me to give a crap about American football. Go Bills! That’s all I say every Sunday during football season. It’s not that I think people who watch “the running around and falling down game” (as my then 2-year-old called it) are goofballs, to each his own, but don’t expect me to really care and don’t get mad at me when I yell, “ICING!” or “GRAND SLAM!” when a touchdown is scored.
To each his and her own. I don’t look in your trash, don’t look in mine.
(Why did I write that? I don’t know. I’m typing outside and so naturally I thought of my neighbors looking in my garbage… that is really weird.)
So yeah, when you get irritated, ask yourself why. Likely it’s you who has to chill out. I think about the bullying thing again, and I ask myself often, “Was I overreacting? Was I out of line? Was I unreasonable?” And even though I know that if I read about it in a magazine, I’d totally understand the reasons for the upset that the me-character was feeling, I still wonder if I’m overly sensitive.
ps – happy birthday to my concert-going and calling brother, bruce wayne.