Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Courageous

What does it mean to be courageous? Someone commented that I was courageous for going to India alone, on my own. Actually, I never thought of it that way. I just thought, it's not possible to go with the group I planned, so I will go anyway... all will be well.

What is it that makes some choices seem braver than others? 

Bravery to me is: to ask for what you want in life, handle conflict with truthful dignity and respect for the other & yourself, move to a new place, drive in an unfamiliar city, introduce yourself to someone you don't know, learn a big new anything (language, job, craft, etc.), give up control, selfless service, fall in love and choose to stay in love or move on. To be a parent or mentor: to take a life and teach them what you know or don't know (thank God for google)... seems to me like a very courageous endeavor.

I can think of a least a half a dozen amazing friends right now doing one of the above... to each of you, I am so grateful for your loving examples of how to live bravely, day by day.

overlooking Santa Barbara, Hwy 101
It's brave to follow your dreams and take a leap into what you love rather than what everyone expects you to do. Taking that leap can be scary, lengthy and lonely but you know you're heading in the right direction it doesn't feel like "work", and it feels more like a hunger inside that needs to be fed by doing what you either know to be the right thing or brings you joy. "It is better to do your own dharma (calling) even imperfectly, than someone else's dharma perfectly." Bhagavad Gita, 3.35

Courage in action is when I commit my whole self to a choice. I find that my highs will be high and lows will be low but life feels so much more tangible and fully lived.

I'd like to say that I'll blog while I'm in India, but I think I'll just use some pen and paper and fill you in December... I'll be in an ashram following the customs there: meditation, asana, lecture, ceremonies at the river, yoga nidra (sleep)... repeat for 14 days. Then, off to Sri Lanka to see a dear friend who I know from living in Kuala Lumpur. And a lovely surprise, 2 other friends from KL will be there at the same time. From winter in Rishikesh to summer-like weather in Columbo, it will be an amazing journey... just me, my large pepto-bismol pink backpack, and my camera, of course. Not courageous, just adventurous.

"If you want to identify me, ask me not where I live, or what I like to eat, or how I comb my hair, but ask me what I am living for, in detail, and ask me what I think is keeping me from living fully for the thing I want to live for."- E Lesser

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