Monday, April 3, 2017

The Fifth Yama Aparigraha - Non-Covetousness or Greedlessness

Greetings Sadhakas,

This week in class we are considering the fifth Yama Aparigraha - non-covetousness or greedlessness.

My life is an indivisible whole, and all my attitudes run into one another; and they all have their rise in my insatiable love for mankind.
                    -Mahatma Gandhi

We should be able to make all sorts of graceful concessions on things that do not matter in life and yet stand unshakable on essentials.

To do this, we have to be detached from our opinions. I'm not recommending that we be wishy-washy, or lack strength in our convictions, but that we cultivate the forbearance not to force our opinions on others. When we have strength of conviction we will not get rattled when people question or contradict us. Mahatma Gandhi, for example, was not in favor of tea or coffee, but he would make a cup of tea for his wife each morning just the way she liked it. This is bending gracefully on nonessentials.

When it came to essentials, however, Gandhi was unshakable. His dedication to nonviolence was so absolute that he would abruptly call off a successful nationwide program of noncooperation with the British if he heard any reports of violence committed by his countrymen, even those who did not acknowledge him as their leader.

Words to Live By: Inspiration for Every Day – Eknath Easwaran

The homework is to consider the fifth Yama, Aparigraha - non-covetousness or greedlessness.  Write down some of your opinions that you identify with.  Apply the practice of Aparigraha and pick one or two opinions and work to detach yourself from these opinions. Also consider what it means to be “unshakeable on essentials” and how your Yoga practices can help you understand what your “essentials” are and how these practices support your in remaining “unshakable”.


paul cheek
Rushing Water Yoga
417 NE Birch St., Camas, WA 98607

Serving Yoga to Camas, Washougal, and Vancouver Washington since 2003

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