In yoga philosophy, we learn that everything is action. Karma Yoga teaches us that we all have to act. Action is inherent in being alive. It is easy to think that abstaining from an action means we are not acting. This is not true. Trying to abstain from action is just as strong as consciously choosing to act, but much of the time it takes us in the wrong direction.
I am not talking about abstaining in the sense that we remove ourselves from a negative situation, or decide to leave a conversation when it becomes unproductive. This is abstaining in the sense that we start to believe we are powerless in our own lives.
Regardless of what we do, the path of our lives will unfold in front of us. We can be willing participants in this or passive observers. I often hear so many people express their discontent with their life without taking action in a new direction. It is as if they believe they are not actively choosing what happens in their life, therefore they are not responsible for the outcome. This is essentially taking on the role of the victim. Of course we all have situations presented in front of us that we have to deal with (the yogis call this Karma). Whatever the situation is that we are presented with each day, we can choose how we deal with it. Each moment we choose to complain or express our discontent, is a moment we could have chosen to dream up a new idea, practice yoga, enjoy the sunshine, etc. Everything is action and it's our job as practitioners of yoga to choose the right actions for our life and spiritual development.
We must understand and harness the power of action. It is inherent in being alive and we can never get away from it. If we accept this, we can be willing participants in our life, constantly adjusting our actions to become better and better human beings.
Scott & Ida are Yoga Acharyas (Masters of Yoga). They are the head teachers of Ghosh Yoga. This blog is about their experience with yoga practice, study and teaching.
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