The Underworld: the place to find your buried treasures. The unknown feels so uncomfortable, especially when the journey is a descent into the underworld. Deep sea diving for the key to transformation sounds glamourous, but my experience of it is murky, dark, cold, silent and isolated. How will I rise from the depths? How will I be reborn and alchemize my former ways? What must I release (everything?) and what can I salvage? It feels I've gone too far to turn back, yet I cannot see where I am headed.
These times are heightened for all and I feel myself up against a wall. Emotions run high when you have nowhere else to go. I look within and make a commitment to plunge the depths of my soul. Nobody on this journey but me. I sense something hidden that needs to rise, to be expressed. It wants a voice. It wants to be named, yet it is mystery. How to embrace this mystery? Without naming it. Without trying to pin it on some external circumstance.
I turn towards my yoga, the tool I use for transformation. When have I faced a similar feeling? What has felt insurmountable, yet has changed me completely once I surrendered to the painful burn of alchemy? My physical body. Yes! I remember that when I have hit my limit and reached my threshold physically, it was a mental flip: "all in!" that allowed me to find the jewel of power that lies in the center of challenge and wanting to give up.
What better way to strengthen my sense of staying power than to challenge myself in a fitness class. When I was teaching Spinning daily, I would say that the point of breakdown comes the moment before you are about to have a breakthrough. It is actually the key and the indicator that you have the opportunity to transcend. If you are feeling highly pressured in your daily life, it would be a good time to challenge yourself physically. Hot Yoga, postures that are difficult and require sitting in discomfort, deep late-night meditations, and high-intensity aerobic classes like Spinning are my favorite (and most familiar) tools that teach me that before I transcend, I must go under.
Meanwhile, remember you are not alone. Each person you encounter today is working to transcend a seemingly painful life lesson today. Soften up and dive into the underworld. Focus on yourself, laser-like, and let that burn alchemize you. I will do the same.