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One Breathe at a Time

by Kino MacGregor

This year’s political season in the U.S. highlights some of the most monumental achievements and pitfalls of the past century and inspires a renewal of the dream of peace, hope and change. Yet in such an atmosphere we must also ask ourselves where the realization of such broad specturm dreams is to be found if these ideals are really to be more than just a dream after all is said and done. We know now that the ultimate resolution of the seemingly eternal problems of humanity is not to be found in a battle between nations fought with weapons of mass destruction, nor in a war of words among politicians, nor in the battle of the sexes. So where and to whom do we turn to answer the most difficult questions of our lives?

The very heart of the spiritual path is a search for inner peace and when you practice your daily discipline you help translate your individual realization to the larger whole. Society is comprised of its members just as your body is composed of its cells. When you take responsibility for your actions, words and deeds you build a gateway towards the slow, steady realization of true peace one breathe at a time. If a united global consciousness is to succeed each person on Earth must live, act, feel and think with the highest level of awareness possible at each moment. That means you and me too. If you cannot live for one full week without letting your anger get the best of you, then how can you expect whole nations to remain peaceful for any length of time? Simply put, your state of mind matters to everyone.

It seems that there have always been wars between nations, lover’s spats and family feuds as long as humanity has been on Earth. Where humans go, drama is soon to follow. Yet underneath the soap opera emotional rollercoaster is the enduring dream of final and lasting peace. Sometimes it is those who are the most deeply entrenched within the drama of their own lives that most desperately search for salvation. For centuries humanity has turned to organized religion to answer the deeper questions, yearnings and aspirations of life. Now the search for spirituality takes prominence in the public domain and your participation in activities like yoga and meditation heralds a major spiritual revitalization of society.

Living life on the spiritual path allows you to tap into the magical underlayer of existence and it is in this space that the dream of unity and peace exists. The real fabric that hope is made of comes not in careless absent-mindedness but in patient, heartfelt dedication day after day, week after week and year after year. Practicing yoga is not some panacea for all your personal problems and certainly not the ills of the world, however, if you practice yoga you may just find a way to live a more peaceful and meaningful life before your time here is over. What unique and valuable contribution you make to the world is not always measured in terms of grandness, but sometimes in terms of how many smiles you share each day.

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