Santosha

Santosha is one of the niyamas, the second of the eight limbs of yoga.  The niyamas are about self-regulation and santosha translates into contentment.  The interesting aspect of this self-journey which is what I believe yoga is about…this union of ourself with ourself (which, of course, includes the divine) is that contentment is under the discipline of restraint.

Contentment is not about the striving to have more, be more, seen more.  You do not require more than what you have in this moment in order to achieve contentment.  Contentment lies in the idea that you are enough, that this is where you are at, and that even amidst the turmoil and pain, you can embrace santosha.

In my view of this beautiful idea, it is not the giving up or the caving in or the acceptance that brings this ease, but rather the constant awareness, constant discipline of practice, that allows me to choose contentment out of many other choices.

It is different from satisfaction which we feel after a delicious meal or an incredible vacation or a well-deserved promotion.  Contentment happens without needing other things to feel good.

“Inside the River,” is the novel I have just finished.  I am swimming in santosha about myself and my determination and discipline regarding the process of telling this story.  I am content with it, regardless of its upcoming achievement or failure.  I am not worried about where the book goes, because the book is….

Shanti–

xoxo

 

Ang Lee, I haven’t forgotten you!

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted my last blog.  I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer, or a wonderful season, depending on where you are in the world.

You may not remember from my very first blog, but I had mentioned cleaning my closets as “a promise I’ve consistently broken my entire life.”  Well, I’ve cleaned them this summer…my fight with clutter may have been battled and won for the time being.  I’ve also finished the book, “Inside the River,” and I’m just doing the final cleansing touches on it with my editor extraordinaire, Jacob Miller.  (Still anguishing over the synopsis so any comments or advice is welcome).

I’ve mentioned on my blog before,  my desire to write another novel about the complex and endearing character of Antonio. He is the old man with the blue eyes who tells Emma the story of Ana.  Who is a better vessel of story and wisdom than a person in their eighties driven by an elusive passion and a misguided love? What hit me was the question, why wait Mindy?

So I’ve started my second book about Antonio.  My idea is to have it as a book of short stories, each story self-contained, but grouped together, the stories will be like those water molecules, bumping into each other and connecting for a moment.  Like I have always said to others about myself…I move forward in circles.

My first story is called, “The Color, Demon.”  Antonio is a young boy in a town of superstition and ancient ways. The people had never seen such a color blue as Antonio’s eyes.  They waited for the land to burst forth such a color but no such flat brightness erupted, and so they named the color, demon, and taught it to their children.

As always, I am grateful for the sharing of this process and your viewing.

xoxo