See Goodness all around you by seeing it in yourself


It’s been a while since I have written. It feels good to be back. Last week I arrived home from the trip of a lifetime; an African Safari. My family and I got to see all kinds of creatures and we developed such an appreciation for the wonderment of nature. Each animal has unique characteristics that help them survive in their own special ways. We humans have those as well. We have the power to be resourceful, to control the mind and to create happiness for ourselves.

There were many inspirational moments on the trip but on the last day, there was a moment that stuck with me. It is a strange feeling when you say goodbye to someone who you have spent 10 hours a day with for a while but you know you will likely never see again.  As I was standing on an airstrip in the middle of the Serengeti about to board a small plane to begin our journey home, I hugged our driver Emmanuel goodbye. At that moment he said “Do you know why you saw so much on your Safari? Because good people see good things.” I told him that he was speaking about Karma, a principle that I live my life by and thanked him for his compliment. As I boarded the plane and waved goodbye through the window I realized that the wisdom he imparted on me spanned way beyond our African Safari. And so 36 hours later as I stood in front of my class to teach, it was my inspiration.

As we began to warm up the core with supine Eagle pose, drawing elbows and knees together, I asked my students to connect to the goodness inside of themselves. What we find in ourselves and channel outward is what we receive back. “Good people see good things”.  As I told them my story, I reminded them that the more goodness we find in ourselves, the more goodness we have the chance to find in others. We used our Sun Salutes to build heat (Tapas) in the body to begin to bring the positive energy up to the surface. As we worked into bound Parsvokonasana and then bound Trikonasana, I offered the reminder that being good to ourselves was the priority, not getting into the bind. If we focused on all the goodness that was there for us on the mat, we would see it off the mat as well.

In life, we often encounter people who seem angry, unkind or unhappy. Because they are not connecting to their personal goodness, they are struggling to see the goodness in others. It was just like Safari in some ways, the times we were riding around with no expectations, just an appreciation for the beauty and goodness of the land we were in; that’s when the magic happened… a Cheetah mom and her cubs running alongside our Jeep or  4 young Lions climbing a tree (who knew they could climb) or 30 Elephants showing up to the watering hole right at our hotel. It is moments like that which remind us that the goodness of life is undeniable and putting out that goodness brings it right back.

As we worked through Ustrasana (Camel pose) and Pigeon and from there transitioned into Savasana, I watched as everyone settled into stillness on their mats. I asked them to begin to channel their goodness outward, to think of a person in their lives that needed to receive goodness in order to see it for themselves. Even though I was feeling a bit discombobulated, not yet fully adjusted back to the time zone and the pace of life, I felt a calmness in my heart. I could feel the goodness in my students radiating out and I was very grateful to receive it.  “Good people see good things” so I knew that by sending out all of that goodness, they were going to See So Much.  Namaste.