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#020: Elephant

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It’s interesting that India, one of the noisiest places in the world, is also the mecca of inner peace - a place where western seekers flock to yoga and meditation retreats, and spend time in ashrams for that much sought-after “Om”.

Even ashrams in India rattle to the sound of steel on steel as India builds outwards and upwards - a modernisation project with no end in sight. However, if you delve into ancient Indian texts, peace and tranquility are not found ‘out there’, but inside us. “The same fire that cooks your meal burns the child. Is it the fault of the fire?” asks Swami Vivekananda in The Science of Breathing. “Blessed be the fire!” he exclaims. “The world is neither good nor bad; the world is the world. The fire is the fire. If you burn your finger in it, you are a fool.”

For yogis, pain and suffering, anger and frustration, are not due to the world ‘out there’ but come from within. By mastering both mind and body, the yogi takes full responsibility for her destiny, accepting that one’s present is simply a result of past choices, and one’s future starts now.

Noise, what noise? All I hear is silence.

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