Thursday, February 27, 2014

A Lesson on Trust and Surrender - It is Never in Our Hands

Doing a road trip on a motorcycle around Cambodia was not only an amazing experience but also a big lesson. I did not only feel a sense of freedom, joy and adventure while riding the motorcycle but I also had a sense of vulnerability which naturally led me to practice trust and surrender.

Trust and Surrender

Each day when I would start to ride the motorcycle I would become aware of the zillion things that could go wrong. A tire could explode, a break cable could snap, a dog or even a cow could run in front of me out of nowhere, a pothole could appear at the worst moment or somebody else could have an accident right in front of me.

Even the most experienced drivers can have accidents, and I had just learned to drive a motorcycle three months before, which has been definitely a new experience for me. Sometimes while I was riding my motorcycle in Mysore I was like "where is the seat belt?" realizing then that the only thing between me and the pavement where my clothes and my helmet, such a weird feeling.

This helped me to realize how little is actually in our own hands and how much is in God's. We can take all the preventions and ride or drive as safely as we can pretending that we have control over the situation but in reality we don't, anything can happen at any time. So the best thing that we can do is to surrender and trust that God will take care of everything and that He will drive us safely to our next destination.

This was my daily meditation on the road; having this kind of attitude while riding the motorcycle helped me to relax, to be present and to enjoy the journey.

It is never in our hands

And if you think about it for a while you'll realize that nothing is really in our hands, ever. When I put a mouthful of food on my mouth I might think that "I" am the one who is eating, but how can I say so if I have no idea of how my digestion takes place, I don't even know how it is actually possible for me to chew anything.

Who gave me these teeth to chew my food? Who gave me this hands and arms to bring the food towards my mouth? Who gave me this whole body that eats, walks and breath? So, is there really anything that "I" do?

Well, this is going too deep for this blog post, for now let's just say that God, that Divine Power that lives within us, takes care of everything.

Fears are stored deeply in our subconscious

Every night during the road trip, as soon as I would close my eyes and enter that space where you are half sleep and half awake, I would start dreaming that I was still riding the motorcycle.

This is something that usually happens to me when I do something with intensity. The first couple of weeks when I was practicing Ashtanga Yoga in Mysore I would dream that I was still doing the practice and I would jump on the bed while dreaming about the vinyasa (the jump backs and jump throughs). Lol.

But in this case, even though I would have this attitude of trust and surrender during the day that helped me to relax and enjoy the journey, the dream of riding the motorcycle came with an intense fear because I knew that I was just about to have an accident so I would just force myself to wake up right away. This happened every night of the ten days on the road! I guess this was in part because of a learned belief that came from the influence of my own family and society.

When I was a kid I once expressed an interest in learning to ride a motorcycle. Somebody in my family immediately responded that to ride a motorcycle is basically to want to commit suicide. That was enough for me to forget about such a "crazy" idea and that belief got deeply stored in my subconscious. Luckily this belief has been challenged through this experience and even though the fear is still there it didn't stop me from riding a motorcycle.

Karma - What is meant to happen will inevitable happen, unless...

Another thought that I would have while riding the motorcycle was "What is meant to happen will inevitably happen, so why should I let my fears stop me from having this experience? Why should I let my fears prevent me from living?" There is no such a thing as bad luck or accidents, the karma that we have created through our own past thoughts, words and actions will ripen at some point in the future so there is no use from escaping our fears.

Moreover, if there is one way to purify a negative karma and prevent it from ripening, or in other words if there is one way to be protected from any accident or misfortune in whatever situation is by practicing trust and surrender. Nothing is ever in our hands so surrendering to the Divine Will, to that Supreme Omnipresent Power that sustains the whole creation, remembering at all times His/Hers/Its Divine presence within ourselves is the best protection that we can have, the best insurance that we can buy. This is the lesson that I learned during this motorcycle road trip in Cambodia.

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