Friday, January 4, 2013

on fast forward

Last week as I was sitting down to chant my noon gayatri I realized something. I was trying to chant all the mantras really quickly as though I had some place to get to immediately. Truth was, the only thing I had lined up afterwards was checking my email! So why the need to rush?

When I analyze my life, I grudgingly realize it's something I do constantly. I fast forward through most of my spiritual practices as though there is some imaginary race that I must win. Even though I know faster isn't better, the challenge in slowing down is having to acknowledge the fact that I may be doing things imperfectly.

When I used to take singing lessons, the thing that challenged me the most was singing my scales slowly. And I'm not talking about just slowly, I mean excruciatingly slow. That was the time my teacher would always correct me. Over and over and over again would I have to repeat them until I got it right. Although frustrating, I never forgot what she told me. "If you don't get it right when you sing slow, you'll not only sing it wrong when you sing fast, but worse, you won't even notice that you're singing it wrong."

Similarly, as I hit fast forward in almost everything I do, I'm starting to realize the only person I'm short changing is myself. As aspiring bhakti yogis one of the most importantly lessons to imbibe is that it is the mood and consciousness that matters. When I rush, my consciousness is of stress, not devotion!

It's a humbling lesson. There's no need to fast forward. It's a good thing to hit pause and re-evaluate and even more important to be satisfied on play. That's the time when I'll grow.


Jessica M said...

This was a great post. Thank you so much! I'm new at pursuing bhakti yoga but I'm realizing that I do try to chant rather fast and that it probably would be better to really slow down and chant more mindfully.

If you get a chance I'd love your thoughts on my newest post...

Hare Krishna!

Vrndavana Vinodini said...

Hi Jessica! Thank you so much for your comment and feedback. It's great to connect with you here!

As for chanting fast, it's not an issue if we are focused and we can hear each syllable of the Hare Krsna mantra. Where we run into challenges is when we're chanting fast just to "get it over with".

Krsna is a person and chanting is personal time with him. I have to constantly remind myself that when I chant inattentively it's like me asking Krsna to spend time with me and once he comes I then proceed to ignore him! Anyways...just some thoughts!

I'll definitely take a look at your blog and post! Thanks so much again and please feel free to comment and give feedback on other posts that catch your eye!

Martha J. M. Orlando said...

Slowing down, forcing ourselves to do so, is difficult sometimes, but absolutely essential to our spiritual growth and mental health. Great reminder here!

Martha J. M. Orlando said...

Forcing ourselves to slow down and take our time does take effort, but it is absolutely necessary if we wish to grow spiritually.
Great reminder!

Vrndavana Vinodini said...

So true, isn't it Martha? I always need to keep reminding myself! :D