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Peace in the Storm

Updated: Aug 26, 2022

We spend a lot of time and energy trying to manipulate ourselves, others and our circumstances into something we want, instead of finding peace in our present moment. This is true especially in grief. We live our grief with preconceived ideas that come from society, our friends, our family and complete strangers. We often tell ourselves how we should be feeling and what we should be doing. Often, we try to manufacture an outcome that is radically different than what is natural.

Finding peace in our present moment is contentment. As long as we strive and want things to be different, contentment will be out of our reach. In the yoga tradition, this contentment is known as Santosha. “Santosha invites us into contentment by taking refuge in a calm center, opening our hearts in gratitude for what we do have, and practicing the paradox of ‘not seeking’”. (The Yamas & Niyamas, Deborah Adele, On-Ward Bound Books 2009, p 119). Anytime we look outside of ourselves and rely on others and our circumstances to provide our contentment we are relying on what we cannot control. When we seek something different, or desire a different circumstance, we are not living Santosha.

Taking refuge in a calm center, finding peace in the raging storm of grief seems to be a paradox in and of itself. Grief is anything but pleasant. It is downright painful. Grief is anything but peaceful. How then can we find peace in this storm? In grief, the calm is in the acknowledging the moment and not trying to change it.

What I mean by acknowledging the moment is that whatever is going on then let it be. Don’t try to change it. Don’t try to manipulate the situation to obtain a different outcome. Knowing that we are experiencing our grief, however it is manifesting, can be a sort of calm. The calm is in letting the feelings flow and not attaching any story to them. When we fight against our grief experience and try to manufacture or manipulate it creates chaos in our energy and being. When we allow the energy to move through us it produces a feeling of authenticity and honesty. We find peace in the storm, even though it is painful, when we allow ourselves to be present in our grief. When we go with the ebb and flow of your emotions and energy, we know we are right where we should be. We become content with the discomfort of grief and this begins to shape a calm within us.

Discontentment is believing there can be something different in the moment when in reality there cannot be. For example, let’s look at a common experience in grief, crying. When fight our crying due to a belief that we’ve shed enough tears. This causes discontentment. However, when we accept our tears, appreciating the release of stress and tension and are grateful for the calm when the tears subside; we feel content. We practiced living in the moment and didn’t try to manipulate the circumstances seeking a different outcome.

There can be peace, contentment and empowerment in knowing we are living our grief in the moment. When we become the observer of our grief and let it BE, without fighting against it we can find refuge in the calm center of the storm.


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