The word duty has been on my mind for a while now…
In vedic philosophy one of the four aims of life is Dharma. Dharma means duty or life’s purpose. It is our duty to realize ourselves and move forth into the world existing in our true and unique natures. Therefore creating harmony from within. When we are in a harmonious state of being, it is only then that we can create harmony around us.
Nobody can tell us what our dharma is, we must find it on our own. For some, their dharmic path is perfectly clear from the beginning, but for others, it can be hard to find or accept.
We live in a world where the media bombards us with misguided ideas of who we need to be. As women, we are expected to be skinny, big breasted, feminine, fertile, sexy, have hairless and flawless skin, be mothers, amazing house keepers, obedient wives and at the same time be educated and strong enough to hold our ground with the men in the workforce so that we can also be wealthy. Essentially, we are expected to be everything on the spectrum of society! We often feel we have to live up to these ridiculous expectations in order to be worthy and can spend our time seeking an unrealistic state of nonhuman perfection.
It is not just the media that imposes it’s expectations upon us. Our fellow humans do it too. For example:
Not too long ago, I had to make clear personal boundaries be known to an individual. This person told me that how I was dealing with this social situation was not very yogic of me (mind you, this individual does not practice yoga much) and how could I call myself yoga teacher and have these kind of boundaries? I imagine that their vision of a yoga teacher is some saint like, celestial being that emanates light, wisdom, levitates, has telepathic powers and nothing and no one can harm them. I guess as a yoga teacher, I am supposed to be perfectly nonhuman. Sadly, this nonhuman idea of yoga teachers was probably imposed on this person by the media and they didn’t even know it. Silly humans, not only do we have our own crazy expectations of ourselves, but we have the audacity to place unrealistic expectations on others. No wonder finding our dharma can be so hard!
A dear friend of mine once told me that in order to find peace, we must realize that that we are not a reflection of our society. We are divine light that needs no reflection to exist. When we stop functioning in the reflection, we see our truth. The truth is our dharma.