The mood in our nation's capital yesterday morning was bleak. We awoke to grey skies and an early morning rain. Seemingly everyone was low on sleep and many were bereft of hope.
As I arrived to teach my first class of the day, I learned that two of the regulars had last minute emergencies requiring their attention, so they wouldn't be joining us. Those who did attend were few in number and low on energy.
We began the practice with a simple mantra:
May I be filled with peace.
May I be filled with grace.
May I be filled with loving-kindness.
As the students began to move, I could feel little shifts in the way they held their bodies. I heard a deepening of breath. I saw a subtle softening of their facial expressions. The practice became a vehicle for them to channel their energy and redirect their thoughts.
Their transformations buoyed my spirits, as well. I ended the class feeling just a bit lighter. And as I stepped outside, I saw the rain had subsided and the sun had begun to shine. While I certainly don't credit our practice with improving the weather or changing the tone of the city, it was a welcome reminder that we have nothing to lose by being peaceful, kind, and loving - irrespective of what is going on in the world.
Wherever you find yourself today - whatever challenges you encounter, dig deep and share a smile. Your simple gesture just might turn the day around for the recipient - and yourself.