Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Serenity

“You cannot perceive beauty but with a serene mind.” — Henry David Thoreau

Six months ago, I began taking yoga classes at a local instructor’s farm. I’d only done one yoga class before in my life, so I was an apprehensive beginner. The instructor and most of the students in this group were of retirement age, however, so the pace was slow and stately. I started going once a week, then twice, as many times as classes were offered there. I began to realize my intention for serenity, a less fearful and anxious state of mind about my body and my future.

During the six months of class, I was also transitioning out of a relationship that I’d been in for the past 10 years. That relationship had begun eight months after I was widowed. My “Monkey Mind” thoughts were often on my insecurities: my aging, appearance, losses, desires, loneliness.  

In times of uncertainty, I find myself reverting to the role of the achiever. I begin to compare myself to others and try for perfection, just like I did as a student. I look for the A+ that will define and validate me. This is not a place to take refuge, however. It is a place of internal stress. Letting go of that role and allowing myself to see myself with acceptance and love brings me closer to serenity. I believe that serenity will manifest as good health and inner beauty. Yoga integrates the awareness of breath, movement, mind. Practicing with intention is transformative. Accepting change with serenity is a very beneficial skill for life, as life is always changing. 

My instructor put his farm up for sale last week. He and his wife have been there 40 years. I’m not sure how many more classes he will teach, but this morning, I purchased another ten. I intend to keep practicing. And I intend to make big changes in my life soon, too. Still, I believe I can find Serenity, when I am open to it, in every circumstance. That is the position of tadasana, mountain pose. Thank you, Tina, for inviting us to find Serenity. 

 

19 thoughts on “Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Serenity

  1. Thank you, Priscilla for sharing your journey. I agree, accepting change with serenity is challenging, but can be achieved. These photos are remarkable.

  2. Pingback: Serenity – Timeless Wisdoms

  3. Great Post, Priscilla!
    I know very well about insecurities and how difficult it is to accept ourselves. Lately I have also thought about taking yoga classes, I think it can be very beneficial.
    Thanks for sharing.

  4. A very moving and wise post, Priscilla. Thanks so much for sharing your wisdom with us. 🙂 I was especially drawn to your thoughts: “In times of uncertainty, I find myself reverting to the role of the achiever. I begin to compare myself to others and try for perfection, just like I did as a student. I look for the A+ that will define and validate me.” This is very insightful–both for you and for me! Wishing you all the best in this new chapter in your life.

  5. I admire your way of working with yourself, Priscilla. Leaving the A+ is difficult. I am trying too – took yoga classes three years ago, but the instructor stopped giving classes. I would love to start again. Wonderful insights and beautiful post. Good luck!

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