How does one know that the Yoga is working? How does one know that we are being harmonized through these practices?
One suggestion is when we start to have equal regard for friends, companions, enemies, neutral arbiters, hateful people, relatives, saints and sinners.
(Bhagavad Gita, Chapter VI – 9 )
The question is how do we get to this point? Perhaps it’s telling that this clue is offered to us in the Chapter on Meditation of the Bhagavad Gita.
Meditation isn’t often enough the quiet experience it is made out to be. At least for me, on my meditation seat arise all the aspects of friend, enemy, righteous, unrighteous, indifferent, neutral, & hateful.
But they arise as aspects of me. Me as a friend, me as my own worse enemy, me as righteous right alongside me as unrighteous, me as indifferent and me as hateful. I never knew I had such a capacity to hate as I have uncovered since the 2016 election. There are moments that I don’t even recognize myself. And yet, here I am, this also.
When we don’t bypass seeing our propensity towards “negative thinking” (thinking we are told we should negate or deny the existence of), we give permission for it all to come up as it may. By neither speeding up the repetition of our mantra, nor accelerating our tactile progression through our mala beads to forego this encounter, when the practice of meditation is not one of repressing we are shown things about ourselves that require great will power to heed.
Like this gradually we get in the knack of sitting with whatever may arise. We learn to receive whatever comes before us with the same openness, same willingness to see & acknowledge, with the same regard. Our divinity alongside our humanity. Our compassion alongside our hate. Our strengths alongside our weaknesses.
In time we are able to see, others as they are being their own worse enemy, others when they are struggling with hate. In time we are able to see others as we have been able to see ourselves.