The Ironic Truth to Freedom

Seek freedom and become captive of your desires. Seek discipline and find your liberty. (Frank Herbert)

Me in Koh Samui, Thailand (YTT 2014)

The first rays of sunshine peek through the shutters and I’m instantly awake. These days, I’m up and pulling my yoga gear on before my mind can start protesting.

Discipline. One thing my morning practice has instilled in me.

Not too many moons ago, I was heeding every whim and fancy that beckoned me. It was about having fun, living in the moment and pushing the boundaries. I had no set schedule and revelled in the so-called freedom it gave me. I was the wild child. The free spirit. Call it what you may. I lived by my own rules.

To do what I felt like, when I felt like it. This was what freedom looked like to me. Discipline seemed like a severe tutor, sucking all the fun and spontaneity out of life. So, I eschewed any notion of this and lived my life in complete and utter abandon.

It was in going through the fires of training to become an Ashtanga teacher that I saw transformation take place. While I had always done yoga, I would scoff at the thought of doing the same rudimentary set of postures at the same time each day. “Talk about uninspiring”, my mind would mutter. And, I would take heed.

So it was. My life reflected my yoga practice and vice versa. A lovely mess of odds and ends.

I never expected my yoga practice to sharpen me up the way it did. I went into teacher training with the resolve to start a newfound practice.

It was only after going through the rigours of Yoga Teacher Training that I saw the transformation that took place after cultivating the discipline required to get me through.

Transformation happens at the edges — just when I thought I could go on no further.

Little did I know, I was going to unearth a new Self in the process.

My morning practice sets the tone for the entire day. In setting the tone for my day, I begun setting the tone of my life.

A day in the life is life itself.

Discipline ceased to be a harsh set of rules to be followed. In creating a routine that suited me, I let the force of habit pull me forward.

In my daily practice of getting myself on the mat and observing my thoughts, I found inner power. The strength of will to persevere during lazy mornings. Relaxation amidst resistance.

A new compassion for myself. A knowing that everything happens in its own time. As my practice blossomed, so did I.

The Ironic Truth To Freedom

In discipline, there is freedom. It’s ironic but real freedom comes from self-control.

Warrior Pose — Me in Koh Samui, Thailand (YTT 2014)

In following the path of ease and instant gratification, the mind becomes weak as we go along life controlled by outside circumstances.

In mastering Self, we master life.

Self-control channels energy towards higher aspirations.

The discipline I cultivated through my practice spilled over to other areas of my life. Less swayed by instant gratifications, I found the strength I needed to see things through.

Perseverance on the mat equated to the same. Expanding one aspect of life resulted in expansion in all.

I uncovered my own capacity to follow through initial intentions. In doing so, I cultivated deep trust within myself.

I stepped into the driver’s seat and stood at the helm of creating my life.

Sacred Discipline

Cultivate sacred discipline. Be a disciple to yourself in whatever you’re creating.

In this way, it becomes service. Service to Self and to creation itself. The set of actions threaded together became a ritual to connect with the Divine.

I am the ritual, the ritual is me. I become One with life itself.

Tinging my actions with the energy of love imbued the action with love itself, thereby affecting its outcome in more ways than I could possibly imagine.

Let love be your guiding force, leading the way. Let yourself flow, in love, within the steady container self-discipline provides.

Let discipline makes you so strong that you can be sacredly, creatively free.