Warning: read at your discretion, it is not my intention to offend. Recently I have received what some would call "hate mail." To my Seeking Santosha account.
The email reads:
"life is not complicated – why do some people make it that way by professing to know all the answers and writing about it? turns out, there is little to no wisdom in what they have to say – sad, although somewhat entertaining if one is truly interested!" (I will keep the name of the emailer anonymous out of respect).
My response was this...
"Well, we *do* identify and apply emotional charges to what we identify with. I'm very sorry if you have been offended. I express myself through my writing and I will continue to do what I do because I enjoy it. I do it for me. I put words to paper to solidify my feelings and what I want to manifest, not because I "think I know everything." Freedom of speech is my right. Who are we to judge another? I do not know everything. I find wisdom and guidance from my own experiences and hope to share them. It is your choice to read it or not. Sending you love and peace." -Heidi
Me as a Writer, Heidi Parker Facebook name Sha Kti ...
Me in Italy, writing. Photo by Magdalena Kuligowska. When I was in high school I had big dreams of being an artist. A writer, a painter, a poet. But my father told me he didn’t want to see me be a "starving artist" so not by choice I had to choose another degree. In high school I loved to write fictional stories and poetry. I truly wanted to be a writer. As a good slap to the face, I almost failed my first University English class which forced me to work harder, maybe my father was right?! Two semesters later and not giving up hope on my dream, I was offered an assistant teaching job by my favorite and highly regarded English professor and at the end of the semester I successfully earned an A. This was a small flickering flame in a dark cave, lighting the way to a dream far off in the distance. Two years later I had a boyfriend tell me my writing was terrible along with my grammar. At the time I was writing a fictional book and a Guide to the Canadian Immigration Process. After receiving such a negative comment from someone I loved, I quit. I allowed my own flame to be blown out by the words of another. I gave up, feeling completely and utterly unworthy. I never finished either book. A few years later, I found myself in another similar relationship with another guy who laughed out loud when I shared my dream and aspirations of being a travel writer. I had the courage to share my dream yet again but soon realized the breath from both men blew my dream out the window like a helium balloon. And there I was, a sad child just watching it disappear into the universe knowing it would never come back.
Several years later I created my blog site but it took me 6 months to make it public. Finally I worked up the courage to share my writing. I shared my vulnerable thoughts and words in hopes you would tread lightly on my dreams. After I posted my first blog, a dozen people commented positively on my creative writing and skills. This initial encouragement kept me going. I was then asked to write an article for a friend about kite surfing and it was published which enabled her to capture many sponsors which has contributed to her success. Now, almost one year later, I hardly get public comments but I have received many private messages thanking me for being an inspiration to those who can relate. I know people are still reading even if the comments are not as abundant because the blog site tracks visitors and as of today over 3,000 people have read my blog. Thank you! I don’t do it for the encouragement and praises anymore. I do it for me. I love to write and no one can ever take that away from me again. It is your choice to read, or not to read.
Take this with a grain of salt. Where ever you are, your heart can be free! Me as a yoga teacher ... We can all free our hearts and release ourselves from our past. Including past karmas. Only a handful of people in this generation will actually do the hard work it takes to follow their dreams. But why aren’t more people doing this? It’s because our minds get in the way and our ego takes over. In yoga, most teachers will tell you when you walk into the studio, before we step on our yoga mats, we should check our ego at the door.
But I say this, bring it with you right to your mat. Set it there in front of you, with you. Get to know it. And when you are faced with a difficult pose or a challenge in life. Know when your ego is taking control of your mind and body and work with it. As a teacher it is my obligation to share with you what I know. I'm not saying what I know is the only way. It is what I have experienced in my own life. Not only am I a teacher but most importantly I am a student. Last April I spent two weekends at two different yoga conferences (Whistler and New York) updating my continuing yoga education. I did 36 hours of courses at these conferences and I had my ego right there with me on my mat at all times. When I was faced with a difficult pose, a controversial conversation about yoga, when thought tried to take over and emotions surfaced and I wanted to use my ego to bully or push my way through, not coming from a place of love or compassion upon first instinct. I paused for a moment, took a breath and asked myself "why am I feeling this way?" I took notice of my ego and was able to smack it around a bit and stifle it when necessary. It was right there with me and I was able to see when it was acting out of line.
I’m only here to inspire you, not discourage you from your goals and current path. Acknowledging that only a handful of people in each generation will actually be true to themselves and desires. Think of yoga in terms of decades. Monumental events can flash by before you so quickly. I’m stepping away from the norm. You can choose the same or not. I won’t judge you.
Stop judging and start loving. Stop resisting and start living. Stop taking and start giving. Stop hating and start loving. Stop casting stones and start supporting others dreams. Stop living your life for others and start living for you.
Yes, life is simple for some, more difficult for others. But as soon as we do not see the innate oneness in all beings and in everything on this plant we place prejudices, boundaries and judgement inflating our ego, making ourselves feel better than the next person. We are not better than any single one person. That person that you do not like could be a mirror reflection of something that you need to change about yourself. "The ego is a self-selected individuality program that has you believing that you are special. Specialness leads to differences, which leads to comparisons, which leads to conflict, and inevitably suffering." (Bill Able)
Not in my own words, but in the words of another ...
"In a truly enlightened state Love is ALL THAT IS. In a truly enlightened state you see Oneness and you don't make comparisons between you and other people, nor you see differentiation between you and them because you KNOW We are ONE, it's not a mental concept, for YOU it is an internalized truth. Gossiping belongs to the ego no matter how much you try to clothe it in spiritual garments such as discernment, "higher truth" or whatever. Real discernment is totally neutral and it is not accompanied by an emotional charge. The fact is, if you speak against someone else on his/her back and try to discredit him or her and thus pump your own egoic "superiority" and egoic "value", it is still a gossip. When you perceive the world through the eyes of your ego, you HAVE to feel special and superior to others in order to feel better about yourself, because you are empty inside and disconnected from your Divine essence. Thus, the only satisfaction that you get is illusory and comes from worldly validation. Unconditional love doesn't discriminate on any basis but only perceives with the eyes of Love." -(Cristina Light)
What are you seeking? What are you dreaming?
With Love - thank you for reading and supporting my dreams!
Heidi Parker, Owner and Creator of Seeking Santosha Nicaragua
Me in Italy. Photo by Magdalena Kuligowska.