“Our souls first manifest as mineral or rock, then evolve into vegetation, then into animals, and finally assume human form. As this evolution occurs there is an acceleration, the process speeds up, light returning to light. as humans we undertake spiritual practice in order to finish the journey home.”
Rolf Gates, attributed to a yogic philosophy, Meditations from the Mat
Day 325 – As long as I can remember I have believed in reincarnation. I kept this secret, sensing it would clash with prominent societal and family views, but intuitively it worked for me. It gives me comfort to think I shall be returning to the universe, and I hardly see a fault in it, although many people have tried to convince me otherwise. In retrospect, I’m sure that’s why I identify with being pagan, and finally gave myself permission to call upon (excuse the GoT references) “the old gods and the new” whenever I needed.
Today’s reading is really about dharana, dhyana, and samadhi, which together make samyama, which Rolf describes as “flow to the glow,” or “light returning to light.” And so, reincarnation naturally pops up as readers consider how we, humans, are really part of a greater consciousness and connected to every rock, tree, animal, and other person that exists in it, most likely beyond our knowing in universes which are part of our own.
Recall in a previous blog post, I said that I was without goals in my dance, crossfit, teaching, etc., but this is not precisely so. Nor, will I be able to get through the readings of this book by the end of the year, considering they are on the deep stuff, the “discrete occurrences” of dharana, dhyana, and samadhi. And that is the point of this belief in reincarnation, goals involve habits of the body, mind, and spirit, intrinsically interconnected, thwarted by forces seen and unseen, expected and unexpected, circumstantial and serendipitous, tragic and commonplace, sleeping and waking, and always, always, always affected by a butterfly peeing off the northwest coast of Africa. In short, our habits are connected to the greater world, our mindset, our belief system, and goals set out to entrench or dispel.
We are born again and again and again each time we take a breath (whether we notice it or nor), each time we succeed at a goal or fail, each time we rise from our beds at four a.m. to practice dance and yoga, each time we wash dishes, travel to school/work and home again, each and every moment of the day. We have opportunity to evolve. How I look upon this at any given time creates my habits and what I do to change my habits for the better or worse (the road to Rome was paved by good intentions) creates my mindset.
So this reading (which took two days–LOL–to delve into) made me really think about mindset and habits and yoga practice, dance practice, teaching school (because my frustration right now is really high), crossfit, and sleep (my routine). What are the things that serve my greatest purpose? What are the discrete occurrences that help me evolve–returning light to light?