With this new sensation of freedom that comes with trusting, my walls came down, my heart felt alive and my whole body opened in the presence this other person. What a wonderful space to hold. My heart loved the feeling of this new freedom and quickly grew attached to the satisfaction of the many sensations I had been craving.
Sensations I had been craving…
We can easily mistake this feeling for love or loving, but it’s not. It’s a recipe for suffering. We fully understand the negative association with suffering; however, if you want someone to compliment you on a job well done, or you want someone to love you, and you don’t get the compliment or love, or it is taken away, this could cause you suffering. Without non-attachment or discriminative wisdom, it’s the old pleasure equals pain philosophy.
Patanjali helps us understand this concept in the Sutras Book 2, sutra 14 and 15. Basically, pleasure and pain are the fruits of birth and even pleasurable experiences bring pain because everything changes. The key point here being that EVERYTHING CHANGES. Sure we get this conceptually, but when it comes down to it, our attachments don’t let us believe that something we want or have will change.
Patanjali does not leave us hanging on this notion, however; he goes on to give us the remedy. Pain is the single greatest motivator on the path of yoga. People experience pain all their lives; most people try to alleviate their pain by obvious means, but these cannot completely remove the experience. In order for there to be suffering, there has to be an “I” that suffers.
Once we realize the following, we can work on not letting it affect us so deeply. We are born with the “I sense” (I am alive), we get a feeling in our tummy that we are adverse to so we cry, our mom feeds us milk and we are happy; thus, we have created our first seed of attachment and aversion. I am averse to the feeling of hunger and attached to the satisfaction of filling my tummy with delicious milk. We continue through life building on these attachments and aversions through the use of our sense organs (smells, sounds, touches, tastes, sight). Our minds register these sensations as positive or negative and when they are positive we continue to crave them over and over.
So with my strong attachments to the feelings of trust; with this new opening experience soon came a feeling of confusion, loss and sadness as the person that acted at the catalyst for this pulled away and left my presence. Sure you can say it is normal for the heart to grieve, but I say this is an opportunity for deep self-reflection. Did you actually love or did you love the satisfaction from all these positive cravings you received? Do you actually miss what you had or miss the way it made you feel?
Love is unconditional, like karma yoga service, serving others without any attachment to the fruits of your labour, without any attachment to the outcome of that love you offered.
If you subscribe to the notion that there is a difference between love and attachment to the satisfaction of cravings, then can you reflect on whether it was true heart opening love, satisfaction, or a little bit of both? If it is the former, then the suffering will either not be there if you are an experienced yogi, or for most of us, will subside soon. If it is the latter, some deep reflection can help you understand your suffering. Regardless, through reflection, our mind will be open to the gratitude of the experience and there will only be real love.
Wishing you a happy Journey