I am in Estes Park, Colorado teaching classes at The Yoga Journal
Conference. It’s Colorado! Need I say more about the surroundings?
On the first day we (a small Yoga Shelter gang and me) were greeted by a coyote. We said our “ahhhs” and quickly checked in. I must say
its quite fascinating to see dozens of dead, stuffed carcasses when registering
at a yoga conference. Who knows maybe the coyote is next?
We then drove about a half mile to our lodgings and guess who met us
there? The same coyote! Being both an animal lover and stupid, I
approached the coyote. He (could have been a she) looked me right in the eye as
if to say, “ok yoga man I will go along with all of your tree hugging love
shit” and held his ground.
I shouted out to the crew to bring me some food. A plate of black beans, rice and plantains soon appeared. The coyote walked away from it as if to say “back off and
give me space so I can eat my Mexican feast”.
We started unloading the car and the coyote came back to eat the
food. But was met by a woman who began to shout, “you are not a dog, get
away”. The meal was left for whatever brave creature whose stomach could eat left over beans and rice.
What’s the point? Be patient!
I am getting there.
Last night we decided to head for a Golden Double Stuff Oreo cookie
run at Safeway. Yes, the cookies are vegan and crazy good. So are Nutter Butters!
As we left our digs, Ian spotted a bull elk in a small pond. It was dark. So we turned the car around to put the headlights on it. What we saw was nature’s finest; a huge,
beautiful creature in pure bliss (aside from the headlights) eating and
drinking. We watched, sighed, and of course, emailed our loved ones photos of
our discovery. The Elk eventually had enough of us and took off. So did we.
No sooner than we got into the car, in unison, all of us just
blurted out, “can you imagine what kind of person would want to harm that
I listened to everyone, and then commented. Just as we see the beauty in that animal and feel the love automatically, so does the person who sees the bull elk and feels the thrill of killing it. That person is as helpless with his response to that
animal as we are.
Just as we wanted to feed the coyote, another person wanted it gone.
We are all just living in this world reacting and responding to
stimuli without thinking, reflecting and questioning. The world is on auto-emotional pilot. There is no one better or worse.
We are all prisoners of the same captor. A human being who simply
acts on what he or she feels without questioning, living a life without thinking
how his or her actions impact other people and beings, is not human at all.
My hope for my own life is that I keep questioning what I am
thinking, and feeling. That before I act, I understand what I am doing and why. That I take careful consideration of what may happen to me and others around me by my actions.
I/we have been giving the gift of Self Effort. I wish to use that gift everyday to curb any desire that is selfish and self indulging, especially when that selfishness may
harm another person or creature. I want to be free of the prison of thoughtlessness and emotion.
I know I am behind the wheel in my life. But am I really the driver?
Are you? I am grateful today that I have a teacher, a family, friends,
students and one hell of a community to help me with my vision for my life, to
inspire me and extract the best from me.
If not, do not expect to budge from the life you are living now.
It takes a village….