Aloha, in this blog we will have another Dharma Talk. There are two subjects we will be talking about. First we’ll take a look at one of Patanjali’s yoga sutras, Sutra 1.33 that teaches us how to deal with others. Then we will talk about one of the chakras, Manipura Chakra, the Solar Plexus Chakra.
For the Sutra part of this talk I chose Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra 1.33, which talks about keeping an elevated and calm state of mind. In this sutra Patanjali gives us 4 ways to be around people, or to deal with people. We are taught to be happy for people who are happy, even if we disagree with their source of happiness. When we see someone who is sad, we approach them with compassion. When we look upon someone and perceive them to be lucky, we will meet them not with jealousy, but with delight. And last but not least, the wicked we will disregard or be indifferent to. All of these states of being can be challenging and might not always come to us as easily as we’d like them to. Yet, when we live by these four ways of dealing with people, we ourselves stay in an elevated place of happiness and peace of mind.
When I was researching this particular sutra I came across a very interesting little story from the Pañca Tantra, that explained that one day, a very rainy day, a monkey and a little bird, a sparrow, were sitting on different branches of the same tree. The monkey was drenched while the sparrow had built itself a beautiful little nest. It had even built itself different rooms within its very nest, making it super warm and cosy and a wonderful place to be. Once the sparrow noticed the monkey it said ‘my friend, I am very tiny, I don’t even have hands, but I did manage to build this beautiful house for myself to keep me warm, because I knew a cold and rainy day like this one would come around’. Upon hearing this, the monkey was offended. It turned to the sparrow and said ‘you devil, how dare you advise me?’ In his anger he tore the sparrow’s nest to pieces. Now they were both out in the cold and rain.
When we try to advise the wicked, they can take it as an insult. They will think you are teasing them and showing off, even if that is not your intention and you just want to help. By giving the wicked advice we will only lose our own peace of mind. So that is what Patanjali is teaching us here as well. By not engaging with the wicked, by being indifferent to them, we can keep our peace.
Sometimes approaching people in this matter takes courage and confidence, and even self respect. That takes us to our next part of this Dharma Talk, the chakras.
Chakras are energy centers within the body. Chakra means wheel. In this dharma talk we’ll take a closer look at manipura chakra, the solar plexus chakra. It is located right beneath the sternum and connects to the fire element. The color of this chakra is yellow.
It is the center of our personal identity and the seat of the ego. It is the chakra from which our sense of dignity and respect originates. Self confidence grows from this very chakra, as well as inner knowledge and our instincts about people and things. The qualities of truth and freedom that originate from the solar plexus chakra aren’t influenced by pain, loss or trauma. Even though life comes with ups and downs and we’re faced with difficulties, once we connect to our true self, to our third chakra, we heal. We gain a sense of inner strength that allows us to stand on our own two feet.
A beautiful gemstone you can use that is connected to this chakra is the ‘citrine’ stone. It is a yellow quartz that has the healing qualities of the sun. It is used to stabilize self love.