Align - Love - Thrive
Our heart team proudly curates a set of teachings, practices and information each month and season to help you live a life of balance, alignment and connection: Yoga! Click through regularly to explore, learn and grow on the path.
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“Action is like an arrow. Once the arrow has left the bow, you cannot control where it will land. You can only do your best to aim well.” Shankaracharya
Our sangha has been practicing together for over 7 years! We reap so much benefit every day and there’s truly no way of knowing just how many additional beings we have been able to impact along the way. The teachings remind us that as we each evolve, all sentient beings benefit. Growth from this perspective is very motivating. If inspired to check in, ask yourself these questions: “Am I living my life in a way that supports my spiritual growth? In what ways am I maturing? Where am I able to make choices? What virtue can I cultivate? What pain can I release? In what ways may I best live in accord with dharma (universal law, goodness, duty)? What do I really want on a soul level?”
The Vedanta (Hindu tradition) says that the nature of one’s life, its trajectory and journey, is shaped by the karma (actions) of the jīva/ traveler (one imbued with life force). It’s important to understand that while we can choose to do our best to aim the arrow, we do not choose where that arrow will land. This is why we get mixed results in life, as it’s a blend of past karmas: yours, mine, and the divine. While it might feel random, the Doctrine of Karma reminds us that all of manifestation is organized according to divine and intricate order. While intelligible, it’s not easy to understand as truly no one can see the full picture of karma and cosmic law at work. In this way, we use language like destiny, chance and free-will to communicate what is seen and unseen. Try as we may, we cannot always comprehend why things work out the way that they do. How often have you asked, "why is it that sometimes bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad people?"
This isn’t an invitation to be passive! While we do not know exactly when goodness will fruit (phala), we can be assured that no action, nor its results, will be lost. Phala (fruit) of all action manifests as two results: one that is seeable, driṣṭha, and one that is unseeable, ardiṣṭha. Fruit can manifest as sweet (punya) or bitter (papa). Despite the control of outcomes, the great texts remind us that where there is free-will there is profound opportunity! Remember, we can still do our best to aim the arrow! The doctrine of karma includes what is called the four puruṣarthas (aims); a blueprint that can support our actions (and attitudes) to best live a life of fulfillment. Understanding and working with the puruṣarthas can help us to create a more satisfying, balanced and meaningful life that aligns at the most holistic level.
The first of the aims is dharma. Again, this includes our individual duty and that of the cosmos (no unnecessary harm). The second is called artha which points to our stability, security, safety, and all of the fundamentals of life, to include: nourishment, shelter, money, relationships and more. The third is kāma or, simply put, pleasure for pleasure’s sake. This is not our enjoyment in any one thing but the enjoyment that comes from our relationship to that thing. Finally, the fourth is mokṣa. Think of this as spiritual growth, freedom, space on all levels. In all that we do (literally every action), we may inquire, which aim does this satisfy and can I satisfy all four at once? When you live your Dharma, fully supported by artha and kama, moksha or the final liberation, dawns.
Let's keep in mind that karma isn’t limited to just you and your actions! In our interconnection, our intentions and actions create a web of karma that includes you, others and the divine. Touching our interconnection is like receiving an invitation to uphold what you’ve been given and to do your best with it. Where there is agency, there is opportunity to contextualize in accord with that greater Dharma. In our enthusiasm to take the responsibility that belongs to us, we can further recognize our influence of others and, where we do not have agency or responsibility, we can extend compassion. This is why we chant: Om śantiḥ, śantiḥ, śantiḥ We acknowledge and pray for the three origins of karma with an ask for peace, peace, peace.
May my actions (Adhyātma Karma) be in accord with dharma.
May other peoples actions (Adhibhūta Karma) be in accord with dharma.
May the divine intelligence (Adhidaiva Karma) be in accord with dharma.
May all sources of karma uphold the dharma!
Om śantiḥ, śantiḥ, śantiḥ!
With astounded heart,
Shastri Meg Lucks / Konchok Dzeden Zangmo
May 2023: Om Santih, Santih, Santih
April 2023: Om Gam Ganapatye Namaha
March 2023: Om Purnam Adah, Purnam Idam
February 2023: Om Namah Shivaya
January 2023: Sat Nam
December 2022: Self-love as Dharma
November 2022: Practice is the Antidote
October 2022: Happiness is the Path
September 2022: Taking Your Seat
August 2022: A Crowded Mind Leaves no Space for a Peaceful Heart
July 2022: Yoga is the Journey of the Self...
June 2022: Practice and All is Coming
May 2022: The Altruistic Intention
April 2022: Being Mudra
March 2022: Receptive Listening
February 2022: There is No Enlightenment Outside of Daily Life
January 2022: The Source of a True Smile is an Awakened Mind
December 2021: The Practice of Touching the Earth
November 2021: Rejuvenation: Nourish Your Entire Being
October 2021: Contemplative Interbeing
September 2021: The Nobility of Silence
August 2021: Dissolve Your Fixation with Self
July 2021: Let's Linger
June 2021: I am in the Flow of the Universe
May 2021: Lighten Up
April 2021: We Travel the Path in Good Company
March 2021: Om Mani Padme HumM
February 2021: Embodied Dharma
January 2021: "Everything can be a 'that'; everything can be a 'this' "
December 2020: I Am a Sanctuary
November 2020: In the One is The All
October 2020: Ready, Set, Rest
September 2020: Attract Beauty Today, Create Tomorrow
August 2020: Refuge in One and blogging by the sangha
July 2020: Awaken Your Voice
June 2020: The Spirit of Sangha
May 2020: Just as You Are
April 2020: The Next Buddha is Sangha
March 2020: You and I Are Essentially Infinite and blogging bits by Heather Kolvenbach
February 2020: Mudita: Taking Delight in the Happiness of Others and blogging bits by Amy Griebenow
January 2020: I am
December 2019: Give the Gift of Presence
November 2019: We are All Royalty by Roy Grant
October 2019: Rekindle the Heart
September 2019: Where Your Intention Goes, Energy Flows
August 2019: Come Home & Be Anywhere
July 2019: Paradise is Now
June 2019: Let Peace Be Your Superpower
May 2019: Play is our Pathway to Possibility
April 2019: Give Yourself Room to Bloom
March 2019: Living Your Highest Truth
February 2019: Out of Love, Our Path Can Lead us to Serve
January 2019: True Belonging is the Spiritual Practice of believing in and belonging to yourself...