Thursday, April 12, 2012


My own impermanence is weighing heavily on me tonight. My role. My life. My impact.

For someone who has always struggled to share and shed emotion, I'm making up for lost time. The rain feels very appropriate tonight. Dry for months, now drowned.

For a long time I felt my responsibility as a teacher was to force or impart The Right Way. Then I questioned whether I knew enough and took a little time off. In this incarnation people keep sharing how I've helped them recognize a part of themselves. I've helped them see deeper or bring light to a subject that was previously murky or overshadowed. Perhaps I am a light?

In college I took a brief foray into the theatre, where I learned a thing about light: when light mixes, it creates different hues than you expect. Forget everything you ever knew about a color wheel and learn a whole new way of thinking. Red and blue no longer make purple. They create a mood (or when improperly aimed, a mess).

Am I creating a mess out of my other students? The 97% who never come to me with thanks? Are they wondering why the world now seems sinister or even more jumbled than before? I don't think so.

When I started teaching yoga, I added my own spin to the end of my class. I say Namaste (and students repeat if they are so inclined). It is an acknowledgement of our shared existence. An "I see you." When I started teaching, I added "The light in me sees, honors, and reflects the light in you." Which is silly, because light doesn't reflect light, it just clashes and creates weird pools and shadows.

But the reflection part makes sense. In this difficult night full of worry and fear, drowned in emotion, I've realized that I do not shine my light on anything. I reflect. I am an empty room full of mirrors.

What do you see?