From a Yogini

My body is my temple. I worship here, I also pray. This is where I confess and repent. But most of all, this is where I seek forgiveness.

There are no pews in my temple; I clear the floor, sit, and listen. I feel how I have sinned. The voices of my ancestors are buried in my foundations and offer reflection, sometimes even guidance. I prostrate my body, stretch, move, and listen. I acknowledge the lessons of the past, present, and future, and accept where I am now.

I feel where I have guilt, fear, remorse; places where, in my attempts to bury these things, corpses now poke through the grounds of an overpopulated cemetery. The dead are not so dead and need to be dealt with. They overflow and pour outside my temple into my everyday life. It isn’t pretty. They affect how I walk, how I act, how I feel. They even affect how I think. In my temple, I sit and listen to the stories of these dead. I honour them. I accept them. When they have been heard, they leave and these places are released. There is space in my temple once again. I feel sacredness in my body.

To these places, I return again and again to confess and repent, to acknowledge and release. Every so often I am brave enough to dig deeper — I find the last corpse in a burial of fear or shame. It is deep. It is old. It is ugly. And it is dark. I feel how this burial has affected my entire being, how I sit on the floor and shake with emotion that has too much history to comprehend. But here the history doesn’t matter, only acknowledgement and surrender. This is the ultimate state of worship: to look within and forgive. When I am brave, when I look deep, when I surrender and forgive, I heal. I am divine.

My body is my temple. This is where I go to worship the experience of life. And this is where I go to seek forgiveness.

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