The Truth Shall Set you Free.?
I recently got back from a week long yoga/meditation retreat in Mexico. Yes, it was a dream come true. I slept outdoors alongside 7 other women, listening to the ocean, showering and sharing to candlelight. We woke up to meditate every morning before sunrise, following by yoga, followed by all organic meals with yoga at night with all unplugged time in between. You could say it was a quite disciplined vacation. And yet, what I found myself experiencing was such a freedom and beauty in practicing that type of discipline. It felt like a discipline to seeing, feeling and experiencing life with no filter surrounded by others doing the same. People showed themselves courageously, bare and raw. There was a deep reverence and respect that seemed to penetrate and connect all of us. By golly, it felt good. It felt real. It felt slightly magical.
I’ve been thinking about what it means to find truth or feel free. I’ve awakened to the truth seeker within these bones, yet it hasn’t always felt freeing. Quite the opposite, often causing walls built around others when I was sure I had the truth and they didn’t seem to want to concede to it. But on my journey into practicing mindfulness, meditation and yoga, even prayer, I’ve experienced them as practices at the core of emptying out all that is not true within our psyches to allow space for whatever is, to come up. It’s kind of interesting how the brain; so desperate to seek the answer and find the truth, can be so full it has no space to experience the fresh truth each new moment brings. Because if the only thing stable is change, and the truth shall set you free, each moment requires your attention. I’m starting to understand why it takes such discipline to be a seeker of truth and freedom. The chaos of the mind and the world require us to continually empty out our buckets to allow fresh water in.
We seem to have an aversion to hard work and discipline often in this culture, around our minds, bodies and souls. I have a wise friend who once said, “we have become a culture addicted to short-termism.” Indeed. But at what cost? When we realize discipline actually offers us freedom, to see things clearly, to not waste and energy on non-truth, discipline is rather about attaining freedom from suffering. As opposed to thinking of it about not giving ourselves what we want now out of neglect, can we view discipline as foregoing what we want in the moment for what the truth of us may want for life? Because I can’t think of anyone I know who doesn’t want to scream freedom from the bottom of their lungs. Braveheart anyone?
I traveled to Costa Rica last year for a month and they have a phrase there. “Pura Vida”. Pure Life. Ya. Pure Life, without any extra, isn’t that enough?