In the Eye of the Storm

July 10, 2017 10 Comments

In the Eye of the Storm

Almost every day I hear people refer to the times we are living in as uncertain and chaotic. I rarely hear people walk into the bookstore and say, “Did you feel the peace and harmony today? It was UNREAL!” While there’s always a part of me questioning whether life is more uncertain and chaotic than ever, or if as a result of our growing omnipresence (thank you, Internet), we simply see more of EVERYTHING, the question remains:

Where can I find peace and harmony in this crazy, crazy world?

It's interesting to note that the eye of the storm, that epicenter of all fearsome tropical cyclones, is a region of mostly calm weather. If we are to learn from Nature then is the same true for us? If we find our own center, can we remain unscathed in the calamity of a world perpetually teetering on the brink of one disaster or another? Perhaps more importantly, can we remain calmly at the center of our own personal storms consisting of traffic jams, deadlines, work and home stresses?

In India, life as we know it is often referred to as maya which means magic or illusion or more poetically, "The Cosmic Veil." Sages of old came to see the world in this way as a result of meditating on the impermanent nature of outer life. The Greek philosopher Heraclitus and the Buddha agreed,

"Change is the only constant."

For some reason, this 1968 tune came into my head from Blood Sweat & Tears, unlikely philosophers though they be! ;-)

"What goes up, must come down. Spinnin' wheel got to go 'round."

When we realize that we can't rely on the outer world for happiness and security we must look within. There will always be suffering, misunderstanding and conflict. It is the nature of the world. In recognizing the impermanence of all things in life and in making peace with that truth we allow ourselves to fully embrace life in all of its ups and downs. Finding your center in the storm can be as simple as watching your breath.

PRACTICE: Take a moment, to reconnect to your breath. From the time of birth to the time of death, the breath is always with you. Let the breath be your "Eye of the storm". Begin with a slow, deep inhale followed by a slow, deep exhale. When all the air has left the lungs, allow the breath to flow in of its own accord. Feel that with each successive breath your heart is growing, and your calm and peaceful "eye of the storm" is growing with it. You may end your practice with hands to your heart and palms together in Anjali mudra or Namaste.

What technique has helped you to remain calm in the midst of life's storms? Please share in the comments below!




10 Responses

Bhima
Bhima

July 28, 2017

Sue, I have never heard Hawai’i translated before. What an enlightened meaning!

Sue Minahan
Sue Minahan

July 13, 2017

Thank you for the validating reminder as I am remembering to breathe whenever! when all else fails! when all must be! when life is good. Like the word Ha-wai-I - Ha/breath or essence of life ; wai/water like fluid flowing, discharged from body (not sea water) ; I/supreme…the cosmic all as I put it. The breath connecting us to life force essence!
Gratefully noticing your post urges me to realize the truth I have the tool with me all the time! TO BREATHE!!! yay!

Charlotte
Charlotte

July 11, 2017

thank you Bhima. nice reminder to stay centered and what a good place that is to be

Bhima Breckenridge
Bhima Breckenridge

July 11, 2017

Thanks to all for the heart thoughts. Meditation gives us the opportunity to dive deep and explore our center, but like you have all shared, we can bring that same center into our busy lives with mindful activity and heart centered awareness!

Norma
Norma

July 11, 2017

Thank you Bhima, just a reminder to breathe into the heart is very helpful

Angela
Angela

July 10, 2017

Thank you, Bhima. Just the right words, timing & message for me today! Its so easy to give power and energy away to people/ circumstances identified in the maya, so knowing my own frequency and anchoring it in loving/trust of “what seems to be” helps keep me centered.

Pennie
Pennie

July 10, 2017

Focusing on a simple, doable action is my go to option. Otherwise I get frozen in overwhelm.

Dakshina
Dakshina

July 10, 2017

Great article, Bhima! Thank you. I also find peace in the calm center of my heart. Peace and power.

stanley
stanley

July 10, 2017

nice! totally agree. I find that concentrating on one task at time can restore my energy and help me stay centered. aum

RainbowMoonstone
RainbowMoonstone

July 10, 2017

Breathing into the heart has been my most used technique!

Leave a comment


Also in The Journal

An Interview with Gina Salā!
An Interview with Gina Salā!

August 20, 2018

Gina Salā, vocalist, chanting artist, music director and sound healer talks about chanting, yoga, and spirituality. 

See Gina at East West Bookshop on Sunday August 26, 2018 at 5-7pm. $25.

Continue Reading

Come Back to the Breath
Come Back to the Breath

August 20, 2018 1 Comment

Greetings Yogis, it is the month of  August  in the year 2018, and while it may have been minutes, or days or even years since you last took a deep, slow, fully conscious breath, fear not! However long it has been, the great teachings of the ages assure us, that what is important is not how long we have strayed away breath but that we come back it here and now. As you read on, you can begin to tune into the rhythm of your own breath, noticing where it is moving in the body. Maybe just by bringing your attention to it, the breath deepens automatically. Try not to force anything- as the great teacher and founder of Ananda Yoga (the lineage of Yoga practiced at East West Bookshop) Swami Kriyananda taught, “All progress in Yoga is made through greater and greater relaxation.”

Continue Reading

Doing Yoga With Children
Doing Yoga With Children

August 20, 2018

I have been practicing yoga for nearly 30 years and currently teach adults. Most recently however, I participated in a kid’s yoga camp as a teacher for ages 6-8. What the heck, I thought. Yoga has proven useful in many aspects of my life, a valuable tool, let’s see what it does for children. First of all, it was a joyful, playful experience, creatively energizing and exhausting as well.  Children tend to move quicker than adults; most children will move into a yoga posture faster than you can say the name, especially if they have practiced yoga before.

Continue Reading

Join Our Community

Sign up for our weekly email for inspiring content and special offers, event updates, discounts, and more!