Yoga is becoming enormously popular and it's spreading around the world like a fire, however, in the west we are still quite in the dark when it comes to “karma yoga”.
The word "Karma" is derived from the Sanskrit Kri, meaning "to do". It is the yoga of action, of doing good and to love the whole world and all beings. It brings our focus from ourselves and our own needs to other people. And it is the most important type of yoga for the world!
Fundamentally, the point is to make someone know that there is someone who cares. It´s very easy to practice karma yoga in your daily life. You can start with your own family and friends and tiny little actions, which can make others happy. Only your smile can make someone´s day, or just being positive, friendly and polite is a little act that serves others. If someone is sick you can surprise him/her and bring some food or books etc. Or if your flat-mate is having a busy week and you have time, you can clean for both. Or maybe you have an old and lonely neighbour and you can make some favours to him/her. These are just a few examples, but actually, everything you do from household duties, like washing the dishes, to more "important" duties, like your job, becomes a way of nourishing the universe that nourishes you.
Then you can bring karma yoga to another level. There are always an endless number of people in the world who need help. There is always someone who is sick, poor, hungry and lonely and who need a helping hand. And let´s not forget our animal friends! You can support global or local solidarity organisations and participate in their events. Or at grass-roots level you can take the initiative and organize something on your own or with a group of friends.
Christmas has always been a period when we stop for a while and focus more deeply in the state of our life. We feel more grateful and we are more willing to share than usually. Let´s try to keep this habit constant throughout the year.
From another point of view, karma yoga is also a path to self-realization, making it a supercharged version of the aphorism that when you give, you also receive. Yoga teaches that as we develop spiritually, our awareness and compassion grow, making us more alert to suffering around us and less able to turn away from it.
On Wednesday we posted an interview with Andrei Ram and he spoke about karma yoga and a project called All One Family Fund. Have a look at his website to read more since this is a true inspiration for all yoga practicers and yoga teachers around the world!
Love everyone, serve everyone!