For me, this means I will see my divine spirit, the one with all the potential, the one with all the righteous motives who came straight from being raised by Heavenly Parents, the one who is not tainted or stained by the world, the one who is already, well, just like God himself.
And so we are led through a yoga class full of poses to end in Savasana. Why? Because the point of all the poses, though as an added benefit they help with physical strength, flexibility, mental endurance, emotional health... the point is to exhuast the body in ALL ways, getting the mind completely still, so that at the end, in meditation, you can see who you really are.
I've thought and thought about this. It seems so easy right? Much of this first month of training I was thinking,
But this weekend I realized something profound. I know in my Head and in many ways I have a testimony, and therefore know in my heart through the Holy Spirit, who I am.
He sent me here to gain a body, accepting my Savior and His Atonement every step of the way as I live His divine plan. He guided me to His true church upon the earth. He has given me strength and help and opportunities for growth. I am to follow His plan and make sacred covenants and receive sacred ordinances. I am to form eternal bonds with a family and with my husband, give other spirit children the opportunity to come into this life. I get to be with these children forever. Based on agency, I get to be with this husband forever, throughout all eternity. And together He and I, as we follow God's will, relying on the Savior, grace by grace we become like Him and get to receive all that He has. We get to return to live with Him and we fulfill our potential.
But perhaps, because we (we, meaning members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) are just handed this knowledge on a silver platter, we take it all for granted.
Because even though I know these things intellectually, and I know them in my testimony, meaning the Spirit has confirmed them to me, I don't really know who I am. I have never met her. I have never sought to know her, or see her, or really UNDERSTOOD WHAT this means for me and for my life.
I mean really, how would I act if I REALLY knew?
How would my life be different?
How would I perceive all my problems?
How would the "eternal perspective" really come to play in my life?
How would I view others?
How much better would I treat others?
How much more would I think of others and not myself?
How much less frustrated would I get with my children?
After all, if I am THIS, then they, and everyone else are THIS also.
Years ago when I was about 2 years in to the 12 steps, I sort of got a glimpse, I think. Based upon my behavior and feelings towards life, I think I knew a bit more who I was... It was the first time that I really understood and knew for sure that God, as the Father of my Spirit, really knows me. It was the first time that "I am a child of God"began to hold any weight. Before that I didn't really know why it mattered. Well intellectually I knew why, but now it began to come to life for me. But as I gained a more solid relationship with Him through admitting my total dependence on Him, submitting my will completely to Him, and experiencing the hope that comes from really trusting Him... I think I got a glimpse. I remember the day that I felt no desire to curse the driver on the road who just cut me off. And the day that the spilled cereal, for the 5th time that day, didn't phase me. I remember that transformational time. Life was beautiful. That was when things with my husband were completely unknown to me. I had rosy colored glasses to the extreme. I was pregnant with our second child. We had just graduated college, he didn't know "what he wanted to be when he grew up" and we moved out to the desert to work-in-exchange-for-rent. I had no idea what our future held, but I was full of hope and humility. Ready and willing to submit to all thing that the Father had for me.
My husband was impossible at that time. He was hopeless and depressed, but still pretending everything was awesome. He would make mindless, thoughtless decisions and I often found myself frustrated with him and his choices, so I took them to the Lord in prayer and happily gave them to Him. But I worried about him too. I knew something was wrong, something was off. He was lost. One day after going to the temple, I prayed and prayed for him. I wanted to be able to
Because of that vision, I changed. How I saw him, how I felt about him, it all changed. I treated him differently because (in the words of my yoga teacher), "I knew, like I knew, like I knew!"who he REALLY WAS (IS).
As I pondered this experience with relation to yoga and trying to see myself as I really am, I wondered...
Why did God show me HIM? Why didn't God show me ME? Why wasn't I asking to see ME?
In the Yoga Sutra's of Patanjali he says,
"Many people do not have that much confidence in their own hearts. "Oh, how could I have such a wonderful heart with all this rubbish inside?" In that case, you can think of the heart of a noble person....If you can't imagine that your heart is full of that Light, at least you can imagine it in his or her heart."
I had no confidence in myself. In my mind, I was the screwed-up one, a convert from a broken home that was hopeless as a mother and wife and could hardly function from day-to-day. But not him. He was the Returned Missionary, the Gospel Scholar, the Father, the Patriarch, the Leader of our home, the bright and shining star, the valiant knight on the white horse. I could see him, as he really was, because I believed in him, with all my heart.
I could have never been shown at that time,who I really am. I had no belief in myself. I would have mistaken the vision for a silly day-dream. A vain prideful wish. A conceited desire. I was trash, in my own mind and heart. Even God couldn't have shaken that from me over night. It was ingrained since childhood.
Well, as we all know, my husband fell off his white horse that he never really was on to begin with. And with that, my hope in all of humanity went crashing to the ground. All of a sudden, it seemed no one was trustworthy, everyone must be out to get me, and I was completely alone (so I thought).
My rosy colored glasses were gone, and all the hope that came to me in that vision, was also gone.
Also, all my hope in my Heavenly Father was gone. All of a sudden, spilled cereal was completely overwhelming and made me raging mad. People on the freeway were enemies to be damned to hell. My own children existed just to make my life miserable. Everything frightened me and I was on edge constantly. I LOVE P.T.S.D. Betrayal Trauma! seriously guys?!?!
Who are we?
Why are we here?
Why do we have to suffer?
What is the friggin POINT!?
But what was borne from that terrible tragic D-Day, was a new hope in myself. It came slowly. It came as I just did what people told me to do to find peace.
It came as I did self-care.
It came every time I was on my knees, ready to give up, but then didn't.
It came in the anger.
It came in the resolve.
It came in the boundaries.
It came, as I reclaimed even a portion of my life back.
Slowly, it comes in all these times.
And now, I think more than any other time in my life, I would greatly rejoice to really know who I am. I would believe it. I wouldn't take it for granted. I wouldn't shame myself. I would cherish it. I would hold it close.
I want to know so that I can see my kids more clearly. I want to know so I can treat others more gracefully. I want to know so that I can make positive choices for myself. I want to know so that I can maintain an eternal perspective in my trials. I want to know so that I can serve the Lord. I want to know so that I can give away my selfish and shameful nature, and replace it with me. The real me.