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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Fear & Loathing in Philly......The Klesas

Fear and Loathing....they go hand in hand. Human affliction. Pretty safe to say that when we have fear of something, we are in loathing of it. And then we become attached to avoidance. Round and round the mulberry bush we go, where the cycle stops nobody knows!
The KLESAS of The Yoga Sutras warn us of these human afflictions that bind us.
Raga/Attachment to pleasure
Dvesa/Aversion of pain
Abinivesa/Fear of release
I have recently experienced this, and it has given a whole new perspective. And folks, let  me assure you, there is no true knowledge of something until one experiences first hand.
If you are a follower, you may have noticed dead air on my end of late. Over the late spring I began to experience back pain; something that was unknown to me. Virgin uncharted territory , every day getting into my little red car to travel on my way, I never knew how bad the pain would grow. Better days, much worse days, days were it was so bad I was running to the ER for relief, only to find none. Accupuncture every 2 days brought some relief, but found myself waiting for my new shadow to come find me again. And it would. We became inseperably attached. 
My ever present sidekick had its own preference for our activities.....aversion. When it was present, tightening its grip on me, Abinivesa took a deep hold of the steering wheel. It caused Dvesa....I would avoid things as much as possible to avoid the mind blowing pain.
It became my life. My dear friend and teacher and I watched as my practice slowly was disintegrating. Things that I took for granted ( Raga) because they came so easily to my over flexible body were stripped away. The fear of pain( Dvesa) was eating me inside out. The insurance would not give an MRI, all they wanted was to give me narcotics.....expected in our world. Take the pilll, become comfotably numb.....see all pretty colored  ponies. Super simple.A vehement NO on my part and they would say "nothing we can do for you then" and they would shake their heads. Physical therapy they said.....(fyi, I am an Ayurvedic Therapeutic yoga teacher-really??) all the while it was worsening. In the interim, I discovered a lump in the small of my back and, gulp, with much fear(Abinivesa) went to a general surgeon. She said it need to be removed( more fear..) The surgery went well, and it  found the cause of the problem-  a tumor  on the muscle wall intertwining with fascia. About the size of a sweet potato. Thankfully, benign.
Pain is gone, and I am grateful for the lessons it has brought me.When we look at pleasurable attachment, fear of relinquishing, and the aversions we face , we strip  away layers. I truly understand how pain can change you, and that the fear of pain can be as bad as the pain itself.  Debilitating and life changing.  It told me to slow down. When you feel and can identify with the experiences of others, it casts a whole new lamp of knowledge.
Yesterday I did my first shoulder stand since the surgery, and my heart soared with the joy of a whole new experience free of attachment, loathing or fear.
Blessings and safe trouble free travels to you friends!

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