It is Time for a Yoga of Emotions

Moving from a culture of hurt to a culture of compassion

Planet Earth, now. Shockwaves of highly charged emotional energy running through the veins of the collective. We are at a tipping point. This is not the time for reason. The raw force unleashed obliterates everything in the way, forging a new path in doing just that. We are experiencing the full power of emotions. 

No turning back. No picking up the pieces. No pulling ourselves together. We need to fall apart with our feelings pointing the way towards a new order. 

Does this imply that now is the time to lash out, scream in despair, or hide in fear? Indeed, given the turbulences that can be felt so palpably, these impulses are understandable. We’re walking on thin ice. In the face of uncertainty, agitation, and shock, lately, life has become an emotional rollercoaster.

With a world unhinged we need to feel deeper than ever before

What we feel needs to be honoured. Not only for us to stay sane but for things to shift in the world. How to go about it is maybe less obvious. What is the right course of action to purge collective pain, if emotional warfare is not an option any longer? 

Because acting out deeply ingrained defence mechanisms by projecting unwanted inward feelings onto others will only cause more suffering. Favouring the sweet release of emotional outburst over healing our reactivity, has brought us to the very place we find ourselves in now. 

This is how, as a collective, we have been operating for the last 2.000 years. Ours, historically, is a culture of hurt. Where do we go from here? 

Let’s start by acknowledging all efforts to build bridges instead of deepening trenches, shifting from reactivity, and blame to honouring each other’s wounds and starting to heal. 

And yet, after all, we’ve done to the best of our abilities, what we are experiencing at present is of a different order. 

With a world coming off its hinges, wounds have been stirred up to a more unbearable capacity. Even the most emotionally seasoned feel trapped, betrayed, or at least shaken up to some extent. 

Does that mean we need to get better at distancing ourselves from the immediacy of our emotions? Quite to the contrary. This is a call to start feeling deeper, much deeper. To feel what it feels to be tossed around by what we are feeling – and meet ourselves there. This exquisite encounter primes us for all other encounters. 

So the question remains: Have we yet touched what we are feeling, or is there more to be felt? Do we have the courage to be thrown in at the deep end and the faith not to drown? Emotions are not a mere bump in the road. They are part of our human make up for a reason. Not so much as an energetic outlet for what calls for release but as guideposts to our inner realms. 

Emotions are signposts not a bump in the road

Emotions are gateways to understanding. They do not need to be managed as they’ve never been here to annoy, threaten, or distract us. Their nature is to be in motion, thus being the very fuel to tend to the divides in us. What makes them stick is our minds’ propensity to attach our feelings to beliefs it holds, which then, in turn, feel even more real. 

Ways of thinking – heavily traveled mental pathways, if you want – backed up by strong emotions proving their validity. And here we are, mentally and emotionally hardwired. Tangled up in the misconceptions of our minds. Failing to notice the familiar as well constructed stories, we keep telling ourselves. 

It is time for this knot to be untangled, to practice the yoga of emotion. Not to calm us down, but to feel everything. It is our willingness to feel, that will transform us! 

Dismantling all thinking loops – a mostly unconscious, compulsive grasping of the mind. Imagine allowing any sensations to flow until it has ripened into its fullest expression, ready to release the information it holds. Real understanding is a visceral experience. It comes with an emotional discharge permitting all unconscious materials to merge with consciousness. Our thinking will become more fluid the very moment our emotions are allowed to express themselves. Then the stories of our lives start unfolding in front of our minds’ eyes with our emotions helping us to trace back the initial hurt and heal it.

The more we learn to uncover what we feel, the more all-controlling, habitual structures will fall away. This is how we unravel the stories of our minds.

It is our willingness to feel that will transform us

Let’s stop practicing to avoid feelings that have been festering in us for far too long — meditating to get rid of something which bothers us. No doubt, calming ourselves helps to transform discomfort to something more preferable. Sooner or later, though, the mind’s disturbances return as a reminder to tend to all parts of ourselves that want to be acknowledged. 

These parts mostly come disguised as feelings, feelings we blame on external circumstances. Eventually, keep hiding from a distance from what we feel only leaves us with the conceptional waves of our thoughts from where we ceased to feel in the first place. We’ve lost the natural connection and passion to the flow of life, which we perceive as upsetting the more we resist it.

So, here is my invitation to you. What if you took your practice beyond the benefits of general well-being and fixing what seems to be wrong? Merely feeling and then feel some more while your breath allows awareness to hold you releasing anger, fear, and sadness out of the collective unconscious for the well being of all. 

Here is to our willingness to stay open, holding space for ourselves and others during times when for many, this seems almost impossible. Come closer. Allow your feelings to dissolve all divides and for a culture of compassion to emerge.