In the scriptures of Hinduism two very important words are used regarding one’s path in life. The awareness and understanding of these words will shape your life, for lifetimes. These two Sanskrit words are swadharma and paradharma. Sva means one’s own and dharma in this context means nature so – one’s own nature. Para means alien and so meaning – alien nature. Are our goals harmonized with our innate nature? The answer is the difference between our spiritual evolution or de-evolution.
Your swadharma is not purely your likes; as in you simply do only what you like to do. Your swadharma comes from an understanding and from an observation of what your predominant inclination is. You may have inclinations toward philosophy, or science or a particular sport. The goal within that field is set such as to liberally educate yourself within that field; to simply learn for the sake of learning and what will come, will come. Within that path to the goal will be likes and dislikes, but the path of the goal is the end in itself.
So I know what you are thinking; we have bills to pay! I totally understand. Trust me. I was blessed or cursed with the predominant inclination toward philosophy. From a young age, I would wonder and enquire into the purpose of life was, why are we here and keenly interested in the inner workings of a human being and as I got older the inquiry got stronger. So, philosophy doesn’t pay the bills, well for me anyway however one can make use of other avenues to earn an income, figure out ways to make that income work for you so that you can tune yourself into your purpose in life. Simple right? Honestly, yes it is tough but it is wholly worth it to fulfill your purpose in life, for you and those around you; for the greater scheme of things. Hopefully, you can also build a support structure; the family I have found is that for me. Time, effort, foresight and compassion for yourself are the tools we need to shape this life, and the lifetimes to come.
If we wholly follow what is alien to our nature over a short period of time we will feel frustrated, purposeless and decay emotionally, intellectually and spiritually. We will be going toward our own detriment. The consequences are rife with agitation. Mother Nature can illustrate this: Imagine the Sun not rising, trees not bearing fruit.
The fruits of the eastern lands; Hindu philosophy, Ayurveda, and yoga feel so in tune with who I am. I started a Vinyasa Teacher Training journey yesterday and felt so at home with the aura of the space and fellow students. It was inspiring to sit among this new “yoga family” that have come together, sharing their beautiful stories in such a safe space. We will learn, balance, fall, get up, twist and move our bodies through asana together and alone. It is truly a time of growth! I hope you find ways to do what you are in tune with in peace and with the strength of the challenges it brings…each experience can be a guru, a teacher. Namaste.