Years ago, I was sitting cross-legged on the floor in a seminar in Albuquerque, and I realized something. I love Ayurveda, but why do I love it? It has many nourishing practices and addresses the whole individual, but that isn’t why I love it.
What I realized in Albuquerque was that I was in love with the teacher’s love for his beautiful “science of life.” I didn’t care if I learned anything. I could listen to him talk about his love affair all day.
This fascinating insight made me consider the other teachers in my life.
I am impassioned by Dr. Jean Houston’s passion for the possible. Five minutes of listening to her and I’m invigorated and inspired. She passes on her passion to me.
I am at peace with Thich Nhat Hanh’s peacefulness, and I am fortified by the formidable Lama Tsultrim Allione. I have spent years studying the art of Spring Forest Qigong, not because I can’t wait to get up every day and practice but because of its founder, Master Chunyi Lin, and his warm smile and compassionate devotion to his healing art.
Remember back to the last time you fell in love with someone: Was it their eyes? Their smile? Their laughter? Was it their kindness or sense of humor? Ask yourself if perhaps it was also their love for you that you fell in love with. The more someone loves us, the more attractive they become to us. We fall in love with their love for us. Likewise, others fall in love with our love for them.
When we recognize this attraction to the state of another – to their love, enthusiasm, excitement, passion, and peacefulness – we begin to cultivate our own passion and love. We want to feel as in love with something in our life as they are in theirs. We want to be that inspired, ignited and content.
I have a secret. I may not be the best presenter or the most skilled writer. I may not be the most qualified teacher or adept cook. I may not be the most talented yogini. I don’t care. My secret trumps all of those things.
My secret is this: I teach what I love. I write about what inspires me and brings a state of awe to my life. I facilitate that which I am passionate about. I cook food that brings me joy. And I go to nature because she clears the clutter that keeps me from appreciating all the rest.
I can hear Jean’s voice now as she describes in-depth a sensory experience and I feel my senses heightened and everything is possible. I see Dr. Vasant Lad at the whiteboard drawing a figure to explain digestive agni, only rather than explain it he softly sings the mantra he learned when he was taught Ayurveda. I see Lama Tsultrim’s kind smile as we bow to one another, and I feel her unwavering commitment to her wisdom practice and teaching.
These are the teachers who inspire us, the people who elevate us, not through their methods but rather through their devotion. Through their courage to express and share what they love.
Allow yourself to be drawn to the people who inspire you, impassion you, and evoke your desire to be as in love with your life as they are with theirs. Through their love of their journey we may fall in love with our own.
So take my secret and use it well. Give yourself permission to be in awe, to be in love, to be excited, and at peace. And give others the opportunity to fall in love with your love and be at ease with your ease. Not because you need them to, but because you are fully enraptured and content in your own life.