So these clips of us singing together in person seem very poignant in the light of our current situation.
The good news for me is I can honestly say that while it was happening, I knew how magical and special it was, and I didn’t take one second of it for granted. I did not know what circumstances might prevent us from getting together like that or when that might happen, but I knew that there were infinite miracles taking place to allow us to gather and share like that, and I was thankful from the bottom of my heart. I felt the same about every yoga class I taught, as well.
From where I stand, it would be a mistake to think that when things go back to “normal,” we will appreciate them more, now that we know what is going without looks like. No, that is not how gratitude works. What do you have to be grateful for right now? The computer or phone that you are reading these words on? How about the satellite that is beaming these words to your house? The food workers, healthcare workers, grocers, and delivery people who are putting themselves at risk, so the rest of us can shelter in place?
Don’t wait to lose something to be grateful for it, because you can always lose more. As bad as things may get, be thankful for what is there. Electricity, a working body, the next breath. We don’t need something to be ‘big’ to feel grateful. We just need to stop for a moment to reflect. And that is one thing that most of us have a lot more time to do while sheltering in place.
Here is a version of my bhajan Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya from the 2019 Mahāpatha Yoga Fall Retreat. This performance features Rachel Isley on harmonium, Michael Wilhelm on bass, Matt McKenny on tabla, and Kathleen Cooley on hand percussion. I hope you enjoy it!
-Douglas Johnson E-RYT 500, YACEP