Stopping to Smell the Roses

It’s finally been a weekend to slow down and savor the moments. Yoga Saturday morning. A slow movie with my lovely husband. Family gathering tonight to celebrate my parents’ anniversary.

And Friday night, I had a small group of my favorite girlfriends over to just be together, in conversation, in food, in wine, in company.

There is something energizing about sitting with people whose souls connect. And we don’t do it enough.

I didn’t host a big party or a blowout of any sort. I made some carefully chosen foods that we could savor and we gathered on the new couch and around the small coffee tables and I had a playlist of favorite songs that focused on love and happiness as our soundtrack.

And really, it was a soul-warming kind of night. In modern life, we run so much. One of our tour guides in India said the following: In the cities, we always run – we run for the money, we run for the jobs, always run away from the Self. In nature, we run to ourselves – yoga is about finding yourself.

That was on our drive from Haridwar to Rishikesh, from train to hotel in the birthplace of yoga. When we arrived at the hotel, we were welcomed with necklaces of marigolds and red dots for our foreheads.

“You are on a journey of spiritual evolution,” we were told as we were welcomed into the hotel. “You are seekers, for transformation, bliss for prosperous life. Prosperous living comes from when we are all calm within.”

How is it possible to be calm when you’re always running? When your schedule is so full, so impossibly full? It isn’t possible. Calm comes from quieting the mind, quieting the soul, sitting with the self.

Have you ever gone to a movie or a restaurant alone? I love doing that. Heck, I love vacationing alone. All that time, open like a field of blooming flowers, all that possibility – I can do anything. Or nothing.

The sun is bright this morning, and my white curtains with gold detail (ordered from India, yes), reverberate the glow of the sunlight into the house. Soon, my husband and I will take to our neighborhood streets just to walk in the fresh air together. To know we are alive. To know we are one.

With ourselves.

As a couple.

With the seat of creation, the breath of the universe.

You must stop to know you are alive. For you can’t hear your own heart beating when you’re racing from Point A to Point B. Sure, we can fill our days quite full if we like. But we’ll never know we’re alive if we do.

Me, I prefer to dance with the silence. It’s a perfect partner.

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