SANTOSHA, the Sanskrit word for contentment, requires our willingness to enjoy exactly what each day brings and to be happy with whatever we have. We can easily practice santosha in the beautiful moments and joyous experiences of our lives. But true contentment means being equally willing to embrace difficult moments. Only when we can be content in the midst of difficulty can we be truly free. Only when we can remain open in the midst of pain do we understand what true openness is. In our relationships, when we accept those around us as they truly are, not as we want them to be, we are practicing santosha. ~ Adapted from Cultivate Your Connections by Judith Lasater
Enjoy a portion of a poem written for me by my husband.
She has santosha with the One True God
In full body worship
In constant course correction
All the way to shava
I love her for exactly who she is
For who she was and who she’s gonna be
Every new thing I come to learn about her
Is further proof she’s the only girl for me
Contentment is a mental decision, a moral choice, a spiritual discipline. Are you truly content today my friend? Let’s draw inward, explore, and seek true SANTOSHA. 💜
One of the most difficult aspects of SANTOSHA is being content in this present moment. Oftentimes when we experience boredom or loneliness we seek distractions from the emotional discomfort instead of exploring root causes. We crave something to occupy the mind or somebody to engage our personalities. As we grow in our yoga and spiritual practices, we are able to draw inward sooner, see our true self in the moment, connect to our spirit and Divine Source, and through acceptance and love we gently smooth out the rough edges and become our best self.
“Yoga is not a work-out, it is a work-in. And this is the point of spiritual practice; to make us teachable; to open up our heart and focus our awareness so that we can know what we already know and be who we already are.” ~ Rolf Gates
“Change is not only inevitable, but is always happening. When you truly embrace this concept of change being constant, the only thing left to do is grow, detach, venture inwards, touch the spirit and find your Source — the one responsible for keeping you grounded through the ever-changing seasons of life.” ~ Julie Weiland
Shalom, the familiar Hebrew word for peace, does not refer to the absence of chaos but rather to an overall, deeply entrenched sense of harmony, health and wholeness in the midst of chaos. In fact, true peace is best detected and measured against the backdrop of commotion and confusion—when instability abounds, yet you remain steadfast; when disappointment and confusion are near, yet you’re still capable of walking with Spirit-infused confidence, stability and steadiness. ~ Priscilla Shirer
Soft Belly Breath Exercise
Breathe in through your nose, and out through your mouth a few times. Place one hand on your heart, and one hand on your belly. Then as you begin to breathe slowly and steadily through the nose, visualize inhaling into your belly receiving acceptance, contentment, love — and exhaling out through your heart giving it all away. Continue for a few minutes. The breath is the most important tool in yoga — it is the bridge between the body and the mind — it draws us inward and into the present moment.
The Soul of Yoga by Danna Faulds
What is the soul of yoga?
Follow your heart into the
center of the pose and find
in the midst of detail and
precision, in breath, alignment,
balance, bliss, fear and sadness —
at the very core of all of this
is love. Touch upon your
truest nature even once and
the experience of what you
really are sears the psyche
like the surface of the sun.
The soul of yoga, the gift
within the pose is the
moment of communion,
resting in pure essence,
the awakening as if from
sleep to the face of
the ineffable wonder and
living reality of spirit — oh,
yes — the soul of yoga is love.
May you experience SANTOSHA, true contentment, no matter your circumstance or season of life. Rest and trust in the Divinity deep within.
“I am leaving you with a gift — peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” ~ John 14:27 NLT
OM Shanti, Shanti, Shanti-hi — Peace, Peace, Peace 💜