It is when we allow ourselves to pause, to be quiet for a moment that we come back to ourselves and what is most important. The more we can empty ourselves out and forget about who we are, who we think we should be, and drop any definitions of ourselves that we can become open to being receptive to life just as it is. I have experienced when I stop searching for that thing I think will "make me whole" or "make me happy" that is when I realize that my wholeness and happiness are already right there residing within me. A friend of mine told me a story this afternoon that Wayne Dyer once told about two cats: (it went something like this but I added the exact video of Dyer telling the story if you want to listen to it)
There was an old wise cat and a small kitten in an alleyway. The old cat saw the kitten chasing its tail and asked, “Why are you chasing your tail?”
To it the kitten replied, “I’ve been attending cat philosophy school and I have learned that the most important thing for a cat is happiness, and that happiness is my tail. Therefore, I am chasing it: and when I catch it, I shall have happiness forever.”
Laughing, the wise old cat replied, “As I’ve gone through life, I too have realized that the most important thing for a cat is happiness, and indeed that it is located in my tail. The difference I’ve found though is that whenever I chase after it, it keeps running away from me, but when I go about my business and live my life, it just seems to follow after me wherever I go.”
The answers to all of our questions, I truly believe, we already know. It is just a matter of asking the questions to our wise selves and finding a moment of stillness to listen. Nourishment comes in all different forms. Sometimes it is unclear what needs to be nourished: our mind, our body, our soul. And since food was our very first form of love in this world, ultimately the first thought we have when we need some kind of nourishment is food. Yet, I have learned from my yoga practice, from taking that pause, that when I ask myself what I really want, a lot of the time it isn't food. I need touch, understanding, connection, communication. I don't have a sweet tooth but I need sweet smells, sweet hugs, sweet glances from loved ones. Then it is a matter of cultivating acceptance; of listening to what we do need, and that perhaps what we desire isn't readily available at that moment.
And then we come back to the pause and the fact that life moves on, things change, and what we need will change too. So I invite you, right here, right now. Breath in. Pause. Breath out. Pause. Come into the pause with me and truly experience your emotions with all their sensations, colors, and textures, for they remind us that we are alive.