Could the bad things that happen to you actually be blessings in disguise? In fact, they can be, but only if you know how to use them. Watch this video to learn more. Prefer to read? Scroll down for the transcript.
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Could the “bad” things that happen to you actually be blessings in disguise? In fact, they can be, but only if you know how to use them.
So, THAT’S what we’ll be exploring in this video.
Hi it’s Eric Walrabenstein, and in this series of videos, we’ve been talking all about karma…and more specifically, how you can change your karma, and your so-called “luck”, to completely change your experience of life.
Now, if you’ve been following along, you’ll remember that karma is just the law of cause and effect. It’s totally impersonal natural force that governs how things affect other things.
But when we speak more specifically, of our PERSONAL karma, while it’s still about cause and effect, here we’re referring to the mental programming that lives in our brains: the likes, the dislikes, the tendencies and beliefs and perspectives and habits that make us who we are.
This mental programming, called samskaras, in yoga, exerts a hugve influence over every aspect of your life, including what you think, how you feel, what you do, and on and on.
Some of that mental programming is good and actually serves your happiness, like the programming that makes you look both ways before crossing the street.
And some of that programming is not so good and works against your happiness, like your tendency to doubt your own abilities, or your impatience with your kids. And at the risk of stating the obvious, you want to nourish your good programming and get rid of your bad programming.
But here’s the difficulty… These mental tendencies are sometimes visible to us (when they are active), but they are often not visible to us (when they are dormant).
And the trouble is, unless and until we can see the unhelpful tendency, see the programming in action, we can do little to change it.
And it’s here that my backyard comes into the story.
So, my backyard is a nice little place that I've cultivated over many years, with a lawn and bushes and trees, and I do my best to keep it nice and tidy. I water it daily, I fertilize it, and pull the weeds so it’s a beautiful place I can enjoy my morning coffee. And so what typically happens, is I do all this work, get the yard looking ship shape and then karma intervenes.
Not my personal karma mind you, but external karma that has nothing to do with me personally, and this karma comes in the form of rain.
The rain pours down, then, almost like clockwork, some 48 hours or so later, my pristine backyard is overcome with weeds popping out of every crevice and corner.
Now, the important thing here is that while my back yard looked as if everything was perfectly weed-free before the rain, the truth was that the weeds were there, they were simply in seed form. And thus invisible. And here’s the crucial bit: in their invisible, or seed state, there’s nothing I can do to get rid of weeds, because I don’t even know where they are.
So, that means that every time it rains, while it may look like bad news, it’s actually good news. The curse is actually a blessing.
Because the rain was NECESSARY for me to see where those gosh darned seeds were hiding—so I can pluck them out and be rid of them once and for all.
And, what I’m here to tell you, is that the mental tendencies in your brain, your samskaras, are a lot like that.
Until they move from the invisible seed state into the active weed state, there’s very little you can do to get rid of them. That’s because to change a samsakra, you have to go AGAINST the tendency that arises with it. No tendency, no opportunity.
Let’s look at an example using a samskara that makes me impatient for example. Let’s say I’m having a day where I’m perfectly relaxed and happy—because things are moving along at a pace that my mind deems reasonable.
And so long as things keep moving along, my impatience is in its invisible seed state.
It seems like I’m not an impatient person at all, but the fact is my impatience is just waiting to be rained on by some external karmic event. Like… Bob, my co-worker who is working at a snail’s pace and holding my entire team’s project up. Bob is the karmic event that waters the seed of my impatience. And as a result, my invisible impatience seed sprouts into a visible weed of impatience. And I’m experiencing the feelings of impatience and annoyance. Now, here’s where most people go wrong. They blame Bob, they try to get Bob to speed things up, or replace Bob, or do anything they can to avoid the annoying feeling of impatience that Bob created. But here’s the thing: Bob didn’t create the impatience. It’s YOUR seed that is the problem, not Bob. He just watered it a bit.
“Yeah, but without Bob’s sloth-like performance,” the mind will tell you, “my seed wouldn’t be watered and all would be well.” Well, while that may be true, what not being acknowledged here is that the world is FILLED WITH BOB’s. Get rid of this one, and there’s a million more lined up behind him to water your seed. So getting rid of the seed is the ONLY way to truly be free. But to get rid of the seed, we first need to have it sprout into a weed, so we can do some weeding. And it’s here that the invitation becomes to appreciate the Bob’s in your life, and use the opportunities they create to get rid of the weeds and the seeds in your mental garden.
By using these opportunities rather than resenting them, we are making our first steps to changing our karma, our mental programming, so we can experience more joy and ease and harmony in life.
So, give it a try and let me know how it goes in the comments. I’m excited to hear how this shift in perspective affects your experience.
And, if you’ve found this video helpful, please do me a favor and hit the like button. It will help more people interested in living happier, more empowered lives to find this video.
And if you’d like to support my work, and get some of my best yoga and meditation practices in the bargain, head on over to my Patreon page to learn how you can help. It would mean the world.
Thanks for watching and I’ll see you in the next one. Until then, breathe deep, smile often, and remember, you’re amazing!
↓ JOIN MY PATREON COMMUNITY ↓ Get my best yoga and meditation practices sent to you each month when you become one of my Patrons. Learn more at the link below: ▸ www.patreon.com/ericwal ↓ JOIN THE BRIGHTLIFE YOGA COLLECTIVE ↓ Join an amazing community of yoga practitioners on a sacred journey through yoga's forgotten teachings and practices in the BrightLife Yoga Collective. Learn more at the link below: ▸ www.ericwal.com/collective