The Gift of Honesty

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Satya is Sanskrit for truth. One of the virtues we strive for daily is honesty, with ourselves and others, in thought, word and deed. Simple, yes? Do not tell lies. Do not distort. Do not mislead or misrepresent. Ah, but as we get into degrees and interpretations and intent, not really so simple after all. Fortunately, we have a lifetime to practice, with many opportunities to move closer to harmony with our truest nature.

Being true to ourselves is essential self-care. Are we hiding feelings? Is overt “niceness” giving others a false image of who we are and what we are willing and able to do or be? Is “niceness” subtly telling our own hearts that our real self is unlikeable or unloveable, so it must be concealed? Are we overcommitting? Are we honest about how many hours are in our day, how much rest and relaxation we need, how we must prioritize and apportion energy? Are we avoiding change, sitting with the falsehood that things are fine when they are truly not? Are we polite to someone in person but cutting when they are out of sight? Do we unload double-barrels of “truth” in bursts of anger or frustration that are an act of violence and in excess of what we know to be true when we feel calm?

There are some heart-centered, open-minded tools that can help us preserve and express Satya. Taking a pause before a habitual response or gathering storm. Allowing for quiet centering before tipping into busyness and reactiveness. Asking the inner question of “what’s really going on now?”

We have launched into the winter holiday season with a day devoted to giving thanks, moving into a season of light beaming through the long, cold nights and culminating with a celebration of newness and possibility as the calendar ticks over another notch. There’s much external pressure to do everything right, to give in to excess to please everyone, to express generosity and festivity. Satya can serve us here, if we let it. What do we really want from the holidays? How can we express ourselves truly during this special season? Why are we behaving in certain patterns and is it true that we and others need them to continue?

Sitting in stillness with truth can be uncomfortable. We may feel the weight of past errors or slip into fear of future difficulties. Again, an opportunity to ask, gently and with great kindness, “What’s really going on? Right now? In thisĀ moment?”

Comfort and joy can be ours and we may share them freely, especially when we are true to our essence, no matter the circumstances.

Namaste! The light in me recognizes and honors the light in you.