By Saguna Goss, SVA Board Member
I am on a pilgrimage. I have always been on one. Until I found Svaroopa® yoga, I didn’t realize I had been on a sacred journey and searching for something my whole life.
I used to think of a pilgrimage as a long path through difficult terrain with an oasis at the end. I thought the path had to be challenging and unpleasant. I thought you had to suffer, so you could earn the oasis at the end. I thought there had to be sweat and tears before you got to the spa.
My perspective on pilgrimages has changed. Yes, there has been some sweat and tears on my yoga path, but it has also included the end of lower back pain, a calmer mind, contentment and the blissful experience of my own Self. You know from your own Svaroopa® yoga practices that, along the way, even when your path is challenging, you reap deep benefits. Regardless of what you hope to get from your yoga, you are always getting so much more than you could ever imagine.
It is not only about the destination. It’s also about the journey. When I was travelling in Thailand, I visited a temple at the top of a mountain. The only way to get to the temple was to climb up 1,237 steps. Reflecting on that memory, I see that the climb itself had the biggest impact on me. If I had been dropped off by a helicopter, I wouldn’t have been ready to absorb the experience of the temple. The 1,237 steps transformed me. When I reached the mountain top, I had changed. A pilgrimage is about the journey.
Now I am in the midst of another pilgrimage. I am relocating from my home in Canada to Downingtown PA to take on the role of SVA Business Manager. Even though there are plenty of physical hurdles to traverse, I understand more than ever that significant, sacred journeys really are internal. Ultimately, the Svaroopa® path is about taking the sacred journey within to realize who we really are — the Self, Consciousness-Itself.
Fortunately, Swami Nirmalananda and the Ashram are here to support us all in our inner journeys. I invite you to join me in the practice of dakshina to express gratitude for the support Swami Nirmalananda and the Ashram provide. We welcome one-time donations, in any amount. And we are grateful for the sustaining support of monthly donations, in any amount. If you are already a monthly donor, please consider an increase in an amount that fits your current budget. To practice dakshina, click here to donate.