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May 30, 2017
Karma Yoga, One of 8 Paths...


April 19, 2017
Confident Vulnerability


March 22, 2017
Spring is Finally Here!


March 5, 2017
The Gift of Never Arriving


February 13, 2017
A Picture's Worth 1000 Words


January 29, 2017
Breath: A Gift of Life, A Tool for Coping


December 4, 2016
Fortitude on the Mat. Take Action off the Mat.


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May 30, 2017
Karma Yoga, One of 8 Paths...
Are you a Karma Yogi (ni)


There are eight Universal Yogic Paths and each of us are born into one of the 8. Some may sound familiar: Kundalini, Hatha, Bhakti, Tantric & Karmic. Some may not: Jana, Raga & Surya. 

The Karmic Path gets a lot of attention and for those who are true Karma Yogis it's quite a powerful path. This is the path of selfless service and detachment.  

Here's  a little story I came up with to help understand this Spiritual Path.
Imagine there is a beautiful sturdy old Oak tree living peacefully by the banks of a river.  One day a school of fish is quietly swimming about in the river, catching mosquitoes and basking in the sunlit water.  High above an Osprey flies looking for breakfast for her newly hatched chicks and excitedly spots the school. 

A heavy wind comes up and blows an acorn off of the sturdy old Oak. The acorn splashes down into the water and scatters the fish.  High above the Osprey changes course from her dive realizing that she's just missed her morning catch, due to the acorns disturbance. 

Is the old Oak responsible? And if so is he  "good" or "bad"? He cause the newly hatched Osprey to starve , but he saved the fish. Perhaps the wind is responsible for blowing the acorn.  Perhaps the acorn is responsible for maturing and becoming loose on the tree...
This is the way we humans quantify and qualify our actions. Its clear that all of  these things are truths; the wind, the tree, the acorn are all responsible, the fish live another day, the Osprey is unable to feed her young - but  what is NOT  a truth is that any of these are "right" or "wrong" they just ARE.  It is this awareness that governs the Karmic Path. 


Karma Yoga is based on the premise of a Universal Web that connects all that is living.  This means that  one action, thought or word has ripple effects far beyond what we can see or understand.  

One of the main spiritual practices for a Karma Yogi is to be completely unattached to the outcome of our "steps" with the understanding that attachment is pointless.  What we see as "success" or  "failure" is only the very beginning of the ripple - we can't imagine what happens beyond what we see.  
Also, as we see in the story above, our perception-  how we view the "outcome"-  is only our perception it's not Truth... the Truth, what is really happening,  has a scope far too big for us to see. 

Another tool on the Karmic Path  is selfless service - and this dovetails into nonattachment. The idea that the Karma Yogi  must give without any concern for the Self, which again, means giving without attachment of the effects of our actions on our Self. But,  even to speak of the Self is almost not detached enough.... it's almost more powerful to imagine that we are simple a vehicle for the vibrations of that Universal Web - that our actions, thoughts words are beyond us, purly tapped into the movement and direction of the Web.  The old Oak cares nothing for whether the acorn saved a life or destroyed a life. It was the movement of the Web that caused the acorn to drop. Once the Oak is free of the acorn that moment is gone and the next has arisen and that is all that matters. 

Regardless of each of our true Spiritual Paths, we all benefit when each of us recognizes the power of our words, thoughts and actions & stays  present to each moment. 

Shanti, Shanti, Shanti,
Sophie