Take the Leap

Greetings, March! Are you ready? Are you ready to toss off the winter and wake up the spring?

The energy that spring brings always inspires me. And this year, I have tangible evidence of awakening. The seeds I planted in the fall are sprouting fresh green shoots in the garden. No, I didn’t plant tulips. I applied to teach at a national venue, was accepted and, in a few days, I’ll be leaping from Akron OH to Sedona AZ to present at the Sedona Yoga Festival!

And trust me, it will be a leap!

Perhaps you know the feeling. Perhaps there’s something in your heart and soul that you desire that seems like a huge leap from where you sit. Maybe there are seeds that you planted that you’d like to see sprout. Now is the time for action…fresh starts…large leaps!

Last fall when I heard the whisper of inspiration that suggested I apply to present at the Sedona Yoga Festival, I determined it pretty unlikely that I would be accepted. You’ve seen me teach at Yoga Bliss and Elevate Akron…maybe you’ve even done some teacher training time with me. You know I love yoga and that the passion for the practice inspires me to teach to large audiences. However, no one in Sedona knows me. And I’m not known by other big name teachers that could speak to my skills. Last fall I tossed my application into cyberspace and filled my calendar with other activities.

Imagine my surprise, and the fluster of doubt, I felt when I opened the acceptance email! I had agreed to something wildly wonderful….and then wondered if I was even capable. Was it was really within me to succeed? It was a Hanuman moment, for sure!

Who is Hanuman?

Hanuman is the monkey man in the Hindu mythology. And, Hanuman asana (the splits pose) is named for the leap Hanuman took from India to Sri Lanka. When Lord Ram’s wife Sita was kidnapped and taken to a mountain top on the island of Sri Lanka, Lord Ram went to his best friend and the general of his arm seeking help. Hanuman was devoted to Ram and Sita so, of course, he agreed to rescue Sita. However, the Indian Ocean stood between him and the mountain top. And Southwest doesn’t fly over the Indian Ocean. Yikes! Poor Hanuman.

Likely you’ve practiced yoga with me long enough to appreciate that this is exactly when things get interesting! You see, Hanuman is a great yoga teacher. And here are three things he taught me:

Faith: Prior to his leap, Hanuman knelt at the edge of the continent of India and prayed. Having been raised among the monkey kingdom, Hanuman did not know he was the son of Vayu, the wind. He did not know that he was Divine and had special powers (like super leaping abilities!). Hanuman prayed until he was centered in his quiet inner knowing. He had faith. And we need faith too. In order to rock the Red Rock, I must find the quiet inner knowing. Not the handwringing-insecurity but the inner stillness of certainty. Remember, we are each Divine and we each have gifts to share.

Devotion: Hanuman was so devoted to Ram and Sita that he took on this seemingly impossible rescue mission. He would do anything for Ram and Sita! The devotion was his fuel. The heartfelt love and passion for his friends were the raw materials that supported him in leaping across the Indian Ocean and rescuing Sita. And my heartfelt love and passion for yoga are my raw materials….the raw materials that will allow me to offer a meaningful presentation.  Identify your devotion, organize your raw materials and put your plan into action! We’ve got this!

Courage: Hanuman had his faith and his devotion but in order to complete the task, he had to summon the courage. He had to LEAP! I’m quite certain that he felt the fear even as his feet left the ground. That’s how courage works. He felt the fear and jumped anyway. The story says that he shouted Ram’s name as he soared effortlessly across the sky! And that’s exactly what we can do. Feel the fear and take the leap. Perhaps you’ll hear me shouting Hanuman’s name as I soar across the country next Thursday morning!

Faith. Devotion. Courage. Regardless of your purpose or project, these three qualities are sure to support you. Awaken from the slumber of winter and leap into a vibrant, exciting and colorful spring! Thanks for the inspiration, Hanuman! Now, I’ve got a flight to catch!