Throughout my life, I’ve heard the term ‘faith’ used in many ways — most particularly as a way to describe Christianity as evidenced by the number of crucifixes that come up in Google when you search for the word– but it’s broader than that. For me, I’ve always understood faith to mean a belief or trust in something or someone without proof. Sure, faith and religion can be synonymous, but there are plenty of ways to have faith outside the lines of dogma. In fact, I’ve learned more about faith in life beyond the confines of religious doctrine.
As my yoga practice has evolved, I’ve found an openness to trust in others and myself that didn’t exist before. I preface that I’ve attributed this to yoga NOT as a new found church or repulsion of an old one, but as a means to become more present where divinity already exists. Everyday we put faith in others without even realizing it. We have faith that the officials we’ve elected will do right by us; we have faith that our doctors have our best interest in mind; we have faith that our friends and loved ones will be there when we need them most; and we have faith in our own instincts and decisions.
I used to be a real worry wart. At a previous job, I was SO afraid of losing my job and what I thought that would mean for my life [living under a bridge with no food or healthcare] that I ‘what iffed’ myself into a near constant state of fear. Then something happened. I didn’t lose my job, I left it. Without a plan. I intentionally placed myself in the very situation I was so afraid of, because somehow I knew — I had faith — that everything would work out. And it did. I’ve always had the “everything-happens-for-a-reason” mentality, but since my self-inflicted unemployment phase, my perspective has changed a bit. I do have faith that no matter what, ‘every little thing is gonna be alright,’ to quote Bob Marley.
Life isn’t always easy, and there will be times when your faith is shaken, but perhaps it’s faith in the setbacks themselves that we should look to trust at those times. Ultimately, though, faith is not a state of mind or a way to trick your brain into being OK with whatever crappy thing is happening. It’s a feeling; a relinquishing, freeing surrender beyond thought.
Faith, like yoga, is letting go of attachment to results and just going along for the ride.
The divine light in me, salutes the divine light in you.
– Your Charmed Yogi
(Photo: Pinterest/Susan Baker)