The Amazing Life of the Individual — from the Perspective of the Collective

I spend an obscene amount of time in my head. And I’ve spent a lifetime learning how not to. For the last ten years I’ve taught others to do the same.

I’m not alone. Nearly every student I’ve encountered wants to learn how to quiet the mental chatter.

Yoga means union — mind, body and soul as one. Slowing the mind to the vibration of the body, and learning to see the oneness of all within the mass.

The human condition is paradox. We present ourselves to the world as separate, and in many ways we are. At the same time, we are intricately connected.

After twenty years of practice and working with these concepts, I am sensing life differently. Lately it’s as though I’m outside of myself looking down, watching myself move through space and time.

Currently working with a Synchronicity Coach, she is helping me put various life situations in perspective. I’m watching my dreams, my psyche, my persona, learning to relate to others from a different point of view.

And then this definition from the Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows popped into my Facebook feed …


n. the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own — populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and craziness — an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blurr of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk

There is far more at play in life than we imagine.

Every individual on the planet is meeting the world from a lifetime of personal experience — perceptions, feelings, secrets, situations, habits, sorrows, happinesses, samskaras, relationship woes, introverted/extroverted, mommy/daddy complexes, work dynamics, rural/urban living, family values ...

This list is not exhaustive. Each person we meet is meeting us from wherever they are in any given moment. It’s pretty amazing when you think about it.

We get so angry at others. For what? Not meeting our needs? Not conforming to the ways we want them to be? Being rude to us? Being aloof? Being themselves?

Sonder puts a great many things in perspective.

Thanks for reading! If I’ve given you something to think about, I hope you’ll clap to let others know I exist. Visit my personal publication on Medium for more, or connect here.