Compassion [kuh m-pashuh n] noun:

A feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.

Like all good yogis we are seeking to improve the relationships in our lives. Not just the relationships built on sharing handstand photos on Instagram, but the profound and heartfelt relationships off the mat and in the world. A great consideration for the sake of relationship and human kindness, is when someone else is in need of compassion, are you as willing and able to bestow it as you are ready to receive it? Not just give it lip service mind you but true heart wrenching compassion that may have you in tears, a compassion that lights a fire in your heart and gives you a kick in the ass and moves you to take selfless action in response to another’s pain and worry.

From my own personal experience I’ve gotten quite good at asking for compassion, God knows I want and need it often enough. What’s been the best source for finding my own depth of compassion? It’s quite simply when I desperately need it from someone and compassion goes unrequited. The soul sucking feeling of needing compassion and it being ignored or withheld is a pain so searing that I would not want to afflict it on my worst enemy.

Now, if your compassion muscle has atrophied you might want to exercise it and get it pumped back up.  Let’s imagine for a moment that you are having a fight in one of your relationships and both of you feel you are on equal solid ground. When you feel righteous it can create in you great deal of stubbornness. Now, suppose the other person feels just as righteous and does not budge either, the fight continues and the relationship is damaged, perhaps beyond repair. Was it all worth it? Not if you truly care for the other person. Sure, it may take a cooling off period, though when you will stop, take a seat, and really think of the other person’s heart, god willing yours will soften. With a soft heart I’ve found even though I may have been wronged, easing the other person’s pain is far more important than my being ‘right.’

I will make the first move, I will go to the person and throw myself on my sword and ask for forgiveness. This gesture can release anger from needing to play out and gives the other person a chance to be compassionate, and that may heal them just as well and allow love to shine it’s light that much brighter. Compassion is a win/win and good fortune and you and your friend can dance together into a stronger bond.

By: Rudy Mettia

Bring and friend and come dance, play, revive, and strengthen your compassion muscle at Udaya Live, Yoga and Music festival.


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