I remember growing up and having some really dogmatic Christian principles crammed into my ears. Some of the teachings resonated with me, and others just didn’t feel quite right and true. I rejected a lot of the teachings because of the judgmental, fear based concepts. I simply had a hard time believing that the ‘wrath’ of God was going to be handed out if I didn’t behave in a specific way. And yet, I kept coming back to church innately knowing that there are some elements of truth. Yoga helped me find God again – in a way that is seated, rooted in love and understanding.
I think the lesson resides in learning to love ourselves. From a Christian perspective, I was taught two golden rules are (1) Love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and might; and (2) Do unto others as you would have done unto yourself. So, if you were made in the image of God, then you must first learn how to really love yourself; and as you truly love and embrace yourself, loving others and being kind is a natural outcome of that love.
Yoga teaches us how to truly love ourselves. It teaches us to release ego, attachment, aversion and fear, to move beyond our limited thinking; it teaches us how to use the tools of yoga and meditation to and connect to the Divine; it teaches us how to live in a vibrational frequency of love, abundance, joy and wonderment. Having a spiritual relationship with the Divine is one of the greatest gifts one can receive.
So, now the question remains: Do you love yourself? If not, then maybe it’s time. And, if you need help, then simply pray, get really still and listen. Prayer is talking to God; meditation is listening.