A quote from a Wah! song about Amma: “She gives you what you want and hopes that someday… you will want to take, what She has to give. Everything you want will fade someday… you just might want, what She has to give.”
Asking for guidance involves a purposeful opening of our Heart, mind and Being. In that movement, we make ourselves available to the Whole. If we refuse to be humble, our asking will be insincere, we will not have made space inside ourselves and consequently nothing will come through. The question, “Oh, Intelligent Life Energy (or whatever you call it), what would You have happen here?” as I was guiding, is phrased like that on purpose. It is directed to “You”, some Greater “Other,” something we will initially and for a while EXPERIENCE as “other” from ourself. It is also open-ended, not asking for some desired outcome. We open ourself and we don’t know. This act is similar to what the researchers found to be the most effective prayer. To get a desirable outcome, praying “Thy Will Be Done” is significantly more effective than praying for a specific result… no big surprise if you think about it.
Asking is only the first part of the process. We also can and need to practice “listening in”, feeling in, looking deeper. As with any practice, we should not expect to be “perfect” at it from the beginning, but must understand that even this is a learning process, something that we will get better at over time, and that there are powerful forces within ourself that want nothing to do with Awakening and will act to circumvent our efforts toward the Higher Good. (Everyone has personal experience to know the Truth of that statement.) Sometimes the Guidance, on the mat or in Life, will be clear, and at other times not so clear, or even seeming to be non-existent, which can be its own kind of answer. Sometimes the Guidance comes immediately and sometimes it takes time for it to percolate through the dense mind with its preconceived notions. With effort and practice and awareness and Grace and being around those who have more experience than we do at this, we will learn to receive and understand the Guidance of the Soul/the Spirit/the Divine, and as the Divine Will sees that we are willing to follow It, Its Guidance becomes more and more clear and obvious.
Lastly, we also need to practice following the Guidance or the Hint, even when, especially when, it is not what we desire. In fact, if the guidance we get always is harmonious with our likes and dislikes, if it doesn’t at least occasionally challenge us, we need to look deeper since we are probably not actually getting Divine Guidance. We have an infinite capacity to fool ourselves, but there are things we can watch out for to help us be more sure. Everyone knows that the right thing to do is not always convenient or easy or comfortable. In fact, growth is inherently uncomfortable since it involves some part of us dying.
Tying all these ideas in with the theme of last year of finding the “optimal” place in the pose, I believe that there is no way to find the optimal if we don’t avail ourselves of some Higher Knowing; that is to say, the logical, rational, thinking mind will NEVER get us there, though it may get us close. For something to be optimal means to me that it is for the highest Good for this and all Beings! It’s simply not possible for the thinking mind to get to that optimal, being fragmented, divided, and incomplete by its very nature.
I’m sure EVERYONE has had the experience of having to make a decision and there are good arguments for both sides, but still you don’t know what is the “right” or “best” decision to make. You’re stuck. Logic has failed us in such cases. And I’m fairly confident that many, if not everyone, have had the experience of making a decision “just because it felt right” even though it didn’t make logical sense, and then having had good results arise. Also consider how many times have you had a thought, or an intuition, and didn’t follow it, only to later think, “I knew I should have done that,” (or not done that) or something like that. That used to happen to me all the time, but from the time I decided to start to follow those little intuitions/inclings, the frequency of that idea has become GREATLY reduced to hardly ever now.
To my way of thinking, God/dess/Spirit/Prana is always talking to us. Are we listening? Are we following the guidance? Are we even willing to follow the guidance? How deeply we are willing to look IN to these questions is how much we are able to shift from being “head-centered” to “heart-centered.” Head-centered will never fulfill since the moment you make a decision with the mind, the same mind immediately starts to doubt it! From one perspective, it’s hilarious! Heart-centered only will fulfill since following it gives its own satisfaction and peace and simply FEELS so delightfully RIGHT, even if it happens to be challenging.