Can you imagine what it would be like to live your life without being disturbed by the need for food and water? For sleep? For sex? Or for shelter?
How would it feel to be free of that stress and worry?
You can have that life.
Too often it seems as though we are losing control over our lives. Everything is moving too fast. We don’t have time for anything – we’re not even keeping up.
We lose control because we are not practical; we have forgotten how to manage the most basic and simplest things in our lives.
In the yoga tradition, the solution is clear: learn how to manage “the four fountains” of life.
What are the four fountains? They are four basic instinctual needs:
- The need for food.
- The need for sleep.
- The need for sex.
- The need for survival / shelter.
The Himalayan Yoga Tradition provides guidance in managing these needs. This is the foundation for a solid yoga practice – and one that is continual.
Many spiritual seekers view the four fountains as a negative – that in order to become a great yogi or spiritual person, we must resist our urges to sleep, eat and have sex.
No! This notion could not be further from the truth.
Practice in managing our basic urges allows us to see ourselves more clearly, providing an objective view of our imbalances. Learning to manage the four fountains helps bring tranquility to our disturbed minds so that we can start living in a more practical way.
Being practical is one of the most important lessons of yoga.
So often we follow rules blindly. These rules are either self-imposed or the rules that others have made for us. More often than not, these rules are filled with all the things we “must do” in our life. And we never really stop to ask ourselves, “Does what I am doing make sense? Is what I am doing practical?”
Does what I am doing make sense? Is what I am doing practical?
Recently, a close friend made a big change in his life. He had been complaining for the past seven years about how overworked and stressed he was – how taxed and burdened he was by other people’s problems and issues. He explained, “I need to take care of myself. I need to secure my own future.”
So he bought a new home by the beach. And now he “has to” spend an enormous amount of money to renovate it. Once again he is commenting on how stressed he is by the amount of work he has taken on – how his sleep patterns are not in sync, and he is feeling exhausted and tired out.
Like so many of us, he has forgotten how to be practical. He has forgotten how to be objective. This is how we become addicted to the cycles of stress and create emotional responses to situations that are not even based on reality.
By learning to manage our lowest instinctual needs based in survival, we can become more practical with ourselves.
So how do you do it? How do you gain control over your life?
Read the full post and hear Yogi Aaron’s explanation in his guest post on YogiApproved!
How do you gain control over your life?