This week the yoga community pauses as legendary Buddhist Monk Thich Nhat Hanh passed on at 95 years old. Thay was a global spiritual teacher. He mentored world leaders like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, and the Dali Lama, and he travelled the world encouraging peace and happiness.
"Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, and sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy."
Even as he prepared to pass on he told us, "Tomorrow I will continue to be. But you will have to be very attentive to see me. I will be a flower or a leaf. I will be in these forms and I will say hello to you. If you are attentive enough, you will recognize me, and you may greet me. I will be very happy."
"To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don't need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself."
As a yoga teacher, and human being, I have learned many lessons from Thich Nhat Hanh that I share in my classes and with my kids. Instead of feeling sadness at his passing, I choose to be grateful for his many lessons, which will continue to guide me on my mission to help people feel better and live better.
We honor our beloved teacher, when we follow the call to STAY IN THE WORK.
In Yoga we call this Tapas, or discipline. It's one of the Niyamas, the guidelines for finding peace within.
By maintaining a consistent practice, we keep our bodies and minds strong and able. You know, in case there's a lobal pandemic or something!!
Our practice fuels the flames of our passion, and keeps us moving forward on the path to a better world.
"Walk as if you are kissing the Earth with your feet."
Here is a meditation I learned from Thay, that I practice regularly, called the Pebble Meditation.
It can help you re-center and re-focus your energy. It can help you be more attentive and recognize the flowers, even on rainy days.
"I promise myself that I will enjoy every minute of the day that is given to me to live."
I'm so grateful for the teachings of Thay and will continue on the path of bringing peace and happiness to this lovely little planet we share.