Monday, May 23, 2016

I haven’t gone to the dark side

image from

Please don’t get me wrong.  

Although my two previous posts weren’t about shanti (peace) at all, I still believe in the power of om (soul). 

I feel though that it is important to embrace both my light and dark sides if I am to move forward in the spiritual path.  

Then, I can face my inner monsters squarely and banish them into oblivion.

I am reminded of a recent class of Sister Denise Lawrence, the first raja yoga  student outside of India.

“There are demons inside...We do a lot of finger wagging. I think we shouldn’t do that.”

“We also do a lot of waste thoughts like “This is wrong with me.”, “That is wrong with you.”

"Focusing on defects that way, I’m not in favor of....We have to fight our inner demons.”

“How can we be heroes if we don’t play out the work of facing our inner demons?”

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

How to break the glass ceiling

image from

I figured it out!

At dawn, when I sat down for meditation, I felt a big boulder over my chest and I felt very heavy.

My glass ceiling had finally revealed itself.

And, it is ugly.  

In fact, it is the ugliest monster I’ve seen so far.

It is a black sink hole of self-doubt.  

“You are not good enough!”, it screams.

I thought I’ve slayed this monster a long time ago.  Apparently, I only made it sleep.

Now, it hangs like a huge eclipse over my heart.

I took my swords of knowledge and yoga out and began to fight.

As of writing, I am still fighting the beast.

Worry not, looks like I will survive this.

How about you, do you know what stops you?

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

On hitting the glasss ceiling

image from

I’ve always considered myself to be brave.  I’m stubborn as hell (sorry for the term, I cannot find anything more apt) if I really want to make something happen and  I am willing to die for something I believe in- literally.  

Of late, I find it hard to move forward in my spiritual journey and in life in general.  It’s as though there’s an invisible force field blocking my path.  Even though, I take steps forward, I bump this invisible wall and I feel stuck.  I move forward again and I bounce right back where I started.  

I couldn’t figure out what’s wrong until I attended a retreat in Tagaytay

“There was a point in my journey when I hit a glass ceiling and I have to break free from it.”, shared Bro. Neville from London.

“There was this dependency in my subconscious which I couldn’t see... I was suppressing it...For a long while I deluded myself into thinking I’m ok.”, he opened up.

It took him years to identify his glass ceiling because he was sweeping his feelings under the rug.

“I didn’t know I was grieving inside because I lost a certain identity I held too tightly on.“

When he finally faced his monster, he vividly saw it as a black mass with intersecting tendrils over his brain and he had to painstakingly remove it in tapasya (deep yoga).

From his experience, I learned that the key is to identify that thing which stops me and only then can I work on freeing myself from the glass ceiling.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Follow Your Heart

We've seen each other during retreats and meditation classes, but we've never really sat down and talked.  We've only exchanged smiles--- until this day.

We had lunch together at the meditation center in Tagaytay.  As usual, she came in sans make-up and the celebrity status.  "I'm really a quiet person", she opened up.  I wanted to retort back, "I am too. So, bye I'll leave you with your thoughts".

The Interview

But something held me back, instead I asked a question then another and another until I got to know her story.

"I always hear sing from the soul. I don't really know what that means until I learn to meditate.  Before, when I sing it's only the body which sings but now every fabric of my being sings", she shared.

You see, in raja yoga meditation, the first concept taught is that of  "om" (I am a soul).  I am a being of peace, power, purity, love and bliss.  I am here in this world to simply express and experience these qualities. However, as we go through life's journey we forget who we really are.  Meditation teaches us to simply go back to who I really am (a soul).

She then related that pursuing what she loves was a difficult process.  "I was raised and trained to be a business person.  I finished business school.  Afterwards, I worked in the corporate world for five years.  But, it was not a world I want to be in.  In my heart, I am an artist."

The Move

How did you move from corporate to showbiz?, I queried.

"There was a year when I withdrew from everything.  I didn't speak at all and would only use sign language to communicate.  I kept on working on the family business but in my head I was planning my career.  I was dreaming and building everything in my mind."

Anthea Church, author of Inner Space had a similar experience.  She called it digesting time.  She wrote, "It cleared my mind so that when my moment came, I could hear clearly"

The same moment came to Timmy Cruz when she clearly knew that she had to follow her passion.  She had to run away from home though.  Without her family's support,  little savings and fierce determination she carved a name for herself in only a year and a half.

It was not easy though.  To make sure that she survives until the next gig she would only spend P50 a day on herself and save everything else.  She would eat at the event where she is performing so she saves on food.  And, she never revealed her age.  In an industry which worships youth, admitting that she was 26 years old when she started her career is suicide.

The Secret

How did you make it?, I asked.  I really wanted to know her route- step by step (just so i know but trust me I'm not planning on being a celebrity)  

"I simply followed my heart",
 was her short reply.

I guess, it is true what they say that when the why is big enough the how is easy.

P.S. This is a repost from my blog last August 11, 2014. 

P.S.S. If you want to learn from this yogi, you are invited to a one day retreat this Saturday in Quezon City.  For similar events happening in different parts of the globe, please click here.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

“What is the essence of being a woman?”

screenshot from Release Your Wings

That question was asked during the Miss Universe pageant circa 1994.  

22 years later, her answer still rings true.  

Indeed,  it is very natural for a woman to nurture and take care of another person- whether that one is her child or not.

It is very easy to put another person first before her needs.

She does not find it demeaning to serve the other person.

This ability to bend to the other (and often to many others) like the bamboo tree flexes no matter how high it is, is the greatness of a mother.

In it lies her strength too.   

To everyone who has mothered another soul... 

whether you are male or female

whether you’ve given birth to a child or not

whether you think that beauty pageants make women conform to a superficial standard of beauty (hear! hear!)

Happy Mother’s Day! 


Thursday, May 5, 2016

Be brave little one

“If you only do what you can do
You can never be more than what you are now”
Says Shifu to Po

I cannot agree more
But it’s so much easier to stay 
In the comfort of the familiar

You can navigate around
Even with closed eyes
You always have a lifeline to call

And it is hard to go
To the unknown
Brave unchartered territories

What if I fizzle out in the sun
What if dangers lie beyond
What if I fail

But what if you meet your best self
What if the grass is greener on the other side
What if the experience will expand you

They say the next worst thing to failing
Is not even trying
Won’t you at least try

P.S.  I talk to myself- a lot.  This is one of those instances.

 image from thewastedwanderer