A yin practice for the Metal element
The meaning of letting go changed deeply for me when I read Jack Kornfield’s explanation of the phrase. According to this dear teacher the phrase should feel more like “let be” than “let go”.
It is because, when we say let go, we may be saying it with a broken heart. There is a little resentment towards whatever and whoever we say let go for… But when we say let be, instead of let go, we let respect and surrender sweep into our souls.
Resentment dissolves and kindness prevails.
To be able to say let be, some of us may feel the need to stop by “trust” and investigate our hearts to find out how our relationship goes with trust. Trust, having many layers, many aspects, and many different types of manifestations in our lives, calls us to look upon it before we can say a heartfelt “let be”.
When we say let be, we let people, situations, sometimes ourselves, and our emotions be exactly as they are. We withdraw our direct, indirect, or mental control over them. We “trust” they are as they are for a reason, a reason we may not yet be aware of. We respectfully acknowledge them as they are. Easier said than done, of course.
Living in a yang world in which intervention, making a change is awarded, it feels strange to step back, embrace a yin energy form and withdraw our tendency to control. Some of us build the foundation of letting be with trusting the balance of the universe or the flow. Or it can be something totally personal.
However we do it, there is wisdom in letting things be. As an example, when we let be an emotion of ours, it means we stop fighting it and at last become ready to hear its message. Our emotions can only express themselves when we let them be. Paradoxically, only when we let our emotions be, then we create our chance of changing them. After we hear what they say to us, we can either flow with our emotion or we can choose to act differently. Another response may be realizing neither flowing with it or changing it is not the option simply because we are not ready yet, then giving ourselves time to digest or getting some help about it may be our path. However we choose to proceed, there is kindness, respect for ourselves and for our emotions.
Another inspiration about the subject came in one of my Yin classes when a student asked me if there is a difference between letting things be with surrendering to the flow and literally letting go of something.
When we literally let go of something, we again may need to stop by trust, this time to heal our fear of the unknown. Since we don’t know what will happen when we let that thing go, we may be choosing a negative pattern simply because it is familiar to us. Thus, sometimes letting be might manifest as holding our fears gently in our arms and keeping an open mind and heart about the unknown.
I hope this blog post and the following Yin Yoga Flow opens a fresh window in our hearts, and brings an inspiration to look within and to listen ourselves deeply about how we feel about the relationship between letting go and trust.
- Yoga mat