True or False: Inner peace creates outer peace.
Truth. Truth truth truth. You can not heal the world before you heal yourself! Of course, you most certainly can heal others while doing some internal soul-work, but you definitely can’t expect to show up daily for others without an existing practice of showing up daily for yourself.
I’ve been reflecting on “Satya,” or “truthfulness,” the second of the Yamas (restraints) in Ashtanga Yoga. When I first began thinking about Satya, my mind was focused on truthfullness when dealing with others (which is certainly HUGE, but it’s step 2). Step 1 is truthfullness with ourselves. The belief that we should have to lie or not be totally truthful with others (Step 2) is caused by the belief that we have something to hide. So much of our soulwork involves being truthful with ourself.
We are all suffering. No matter how far along we are on our path to self-development, we will all inevitably feel pain. We are human, thus, we are sucked into the human drama daily, thus, pain. Pain is a way for our minds or bodies to tell us that something needs attention. Pain, when mental, is a sign that we have some soul work to do.
Stop diagnosing yourself with things. Stop telling yourself lies that you will inevitably self-fullfill. That is easy to do. When you perpetuate a lie about yourself, then you get the easy job of acting on that lie. You know what is hard? Checking in with yourself and being raw, open, and honest about what needs work. Think about it- which is easier to say/become- “I am bad with relationships” or “I am afraid to become vulnerable.” I am bad with relationships allows you to be bad with relationships. I am afraid to become vulnerable exposes you to that which needs work. It pits you face-to-face with your fear, and makes you recognize that you have to uncover some painful realizations about why you are afraid to become vulnerable.
Satya can be extremely painful, but making it a daily practice builds you up. In order to grow, you must expose your wounds. You must salt your wounds. You must call attention the the weakest part of yourself, and focus on healing it. It will be so painful at first, but after awhile it will be nothing but a scar. It will remain with you, but it will have become a battle wound that you have confronted, laying the foundation for overcoming the next challenge.
Satya is a practice. You don’t suddenly become truthful with yourself and others completely. Satya is restraining yourself from being inauthentic. It is a practice which will reveal your soul and help you become more aligned with your authentic self in thoughts, words, and actions. Your mission in life is not to change yourself, it is to unveil yourself. Truth is that which does not change; practicing Satya is a practice of becoming you.