Satya and Ahimsa: Part 3

Part 3: The Relationship

In Part 1 of this post I focused on Satya or truth. My truth is that I live with chronic pain, and for several months I felt completely overwhelmed by it. In Part 2 of this post I focused on Ahimsa or non-violence. Once I faced my truth, the most non-violent decision I could make was taking prescription medication. As a result I was able to breath easier, to practice yoga, and to find some pain relief.

From my experience, only when I faced my truth was I able to take appropriate non-violent steps toward a solution. I believe it is important to acknowledge the relationship between Satya and Ahimsa to successfully embody these concepts, as illustrated in the activity below. 

Activity time! 

Get a rubber band notice its size and shape. Now hold it between your index finger and thumb on each hand. Gently begin to stretch and relax the rubber band. Notice what it feels like initially to stretch the rubber band. Pause, and then continue to stretch and relax the rubber band. What does it feel like now? Has the rubber band become more flexible? Place the rubber band on a surface in front of you. Has the resting state of the rubber band grown? What would happen if you stretched the rubber band even further, perhaps too far?

Consider this:

The rubber band you held was a representation of yourself. You are able to stretch yourself, and you are able to grow. You are able solve problems, face challenges, and overcome adversity. You do this through facing your truth and enduring discomfort that occasionally accompanies growth. 

But what happens when you have stretched yourself too far, when you have spread yourself too thin, and when discomfort transforms into overwhelming pain? You "snap" and hopefully you did not experience with with your rubber band! "Snapping" can occur when you turn away from your truth, when you ignore the fact that you are stretching yourself too thin. Ignoring your truth results in a violent "snap" when you have passed the breaking point.

It is important to stay connected to your truth so that you are able to treat yourself in a non-violent manner. How has the relationship between Satya and Ahimsa shaped your experience and influenced your decisions? How can you better embody these yoga concepts?