Tolerance

When we visit Bali, we stay at our friend Rob's villa, which is located on the main road in town. On the other side of the road from Rob, there is a local Balinese man named Madé, who is quite up to date on the ways of the world.

Having gotten to know Madé over the last few years, we have become friends. He has a small tour guide agency and he rents us our scooters. Each time we would visit, he would invariably ask in his Balinese accent, "so when are you moving here?" 

This past summer, Mike laughingly responded, "if Trump wins, we'll move."

We got an email yesterday from Rob. Madé was asking when we were moving.

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If you talked to me last week, I would have said Hillary was going to win by a landslide. I mean, my entire newsfeed was #withher.

I didn't even think to watch the election results since it all seemed so cut and dried. I was confused why Madonna and Jay Z were even doing these free concerts. Wasn't everyone voting for her anyway?

After the election, I hesitated on writing something because I feel like everyone had aired their opinion, but then I reflected. Me not writing would be the same as me not voting. If I'm going to live in America, I am going to take advantage of it's liberties.

Last week was a mess for the yoga community. People crying on their mats. Hugging each other. The stages of grief were palpable. And more importantly, it was revealing that our kombucha drinking, sage burning way of life is not a reflection of the collective reality. 

That doesn't mean we as yoga practitioners need to pack up and move to Bali. Which we aren't doing, by the way. If we are truly living our yoga practice, it is the acceptance of the here and now. 

Instead of holding on to belief systems and ideals, we must open our eyes and our hearts to the current reality. We ask ourselves, in this current state, how can I be of service? How can I be open to understanding, even when I don't agree with it? We find the flexibility of our minds correlates to the flexibility of our bodies. When we hold on tightly to how we believe things should be, we become stiff. Inside and out. When close our eyes and fight the current situation, we remove ourselves from being of service. When we cling to the past, we never experience the present. The more we believe our way is the only way, the more we shut down and the more we shut off. 

We don't have to agree on every issue, but I think there is one thing we can come together on, and that is being open and aware. Because beneath this flesh and bone, beneath these opinions and judgements and programming, we all still have a heart.

The highest result of education is tolerance
— Helen Keller
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