Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Story of Satya: How the Ancients Came to See their Power

The Story of Satya:
How the Ancients Came to See their Power

Catherine Cook-Cottone

There was a time when sickness struck the land. At first, only a few were sick. Sadly, as time passed, more and more of the people fell ill. This illness was slow and insidious. Many times, the stricken did not even know they were ill.

Once exposed, an individual gradually lost a sense of him or herself. These were the spiritual and cognitive symptoms. There were relational symptoms as well. The sicker an individual became the more he or she struggled to see others for their true selves. It was as if looking into another’s eyes was like looking into a mirror at their fears. Many simply closed their eyes to stop the pain.

The physical symptoms were also slow to progress. It made denial of the illness easy. Still able to walk and function, the stricken fooled themselves into believing they were okay. When asked how they were, “I am fine,” was the script. Each day, the sickness hardened their arteries, atrophied their muscles, and clouded their vision. Over the years, the half young would struggle to stand upright feeling pain in their lower backs and shoulders. The doctors gave them pain medicine and performed surgeries, not knowing the root causes and needing to treat.

The emotional symptoms were the hardest. The loss of self and the disconnection from others caused a sadness so deep and so complete that pharmaceutical companies became rich creating medicines that treated the sadness. Media was filled with advertisements for chemical treatments for this sadness that now overtook so many. Others became afraid, a to-their-core-afraid. So the chemists created medicines for that too. Never before had the land seen so many sad and afraid people, people who had lost themselves and their connections to others. The land was not well. The sickness was spreading and growing and many didn’t even know they were sick.

All the while, the radios played happy songs, ads were filled with models painted and airbrushed to look like they had not been stricken. The visions of what was wellness became bent, distorted, and altered to things that seemed accessible to the stricken. The ads harolded tales of food restriction, materialism, competitiveness, disconnection, and narcissism (i.e., the love of the false self). Those with lost selves and lost connection, they saw these ads and thought, “Yes, yes happiness is possible. My self can be found in the adherence to these images. I shall eat less, paint and decorate myself, buy many things, and strive to find my image. My self is there. Once I find my self, I will be ready to be with others. Others will want me. I will be connected to them.” This tale was told to many, for decades upon decades. And so it was. The stricken strove to feel better using tools that would only make them sicker. Alas, the chemists, the body decorators, the ad people, and the image makers, they all became wealthy.

The sickness remained.

Little did the people know, well, little did most of the people know, that there was a cure, an 8-ingredient treatment for the sickness (see link below for a text on the 8-limbs of yoga). It was held by the ancients. The ancients knew and tried to share the cure with the stricken. Some of the stricken had their eyes closed and could not see it. Some of the stricken had tried the cure, yet with its 8 ingredients rationed just so, they could not bring it to their lips or hold it in their bellies. It was far too potent, too strong, too different for their stricken bodies. Some said, before even trying it, that the cure did not work.

A little girl, Satya, was born to two of the ancients. She was bright and loved all- the stricken and the ancient. Her parents had moved to the modern city to help spread the cure and had become discouraged as the stricken drove past their little shop to the mall to buy diets and decorations.

Each year, the stricken drove by their shop to the mall and each year Satya grew older. As her parents were of no means, she went to school with the children of the modern city and many of the stricken. Satya came back each day with tales of the ways of the stricken. Her parents would drop their eyes and feel great sadness, knowing they had the cure right in their shop.

Every so often, one of the stricken would come in to the shop. He or she would be brave enough, open enough, tired enough of his or her way of being, that he or she would try the cure- pure- with all 8 ingredients. Enlightened and well, the healed would leave to spread the word.

Satya saw this and it gave her great hope. She could see over the years that there was this slow and gradual enlightenment among the people. A growing number of the stricken were coming to her parents’ shop. Better, some of the enlightened opened their own shops. They began to find ways to make the 8-ingredient cure more accessible to the stricken and Satya saw this as hope.

Over more years, Satya grew to be a young woman, a teenager in high school. An old soul and daughter of ancients, she embodied wisdom. She watched as the enlightened struggled to bring the 8-ingredient cure to the people. Some of the stricken took one or two ingredients and felt somewhat better. Others took two or three and felt even better. The ancients watched. Some of the ancients became afraid. They thought that if the cure lost its 8 ingredients, if it became just one or two ingredients, it would not longer be. If it no longer was, then all could be stricken. This terrified the ancients.

A great debate ensued among the ancients. Many began to judge the newer remedies as watered down, not enough, even wrong. They used their voices to cry foul and their fingers to type fear-filled judgments of all 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7-ingredient cures. Satya’s parents were lost in it. She would go to school and hear how mothers and fathers of her friends who were once completely stricken were finding hope and wellness and asking questions about the whole cure-- all 8 ingredients. She saw the faces and hearts of her classmates who were saved from the illness because their parents were healed enough to protect them. She saw that the modified cures were helping people and drawing them toward the ancients, toward enlightenment. She tried to explain this to her parents who were so lost in their fear and protection of the 8-ingredient cure that they could not hear her. She had never seen her parents this way. It scared her, they were beginning to sound, in small ways, like the stricken themselves as their hearts closed and eyes lowered and they drew inward.

Satya cried long cries.

And as Satya cried the chemists were changing their focus to healthier things because the chemical cures for sadness and fear weren’t selling as well as they used to. And the decorators and diet makers were planting gardens and making smoothies. And the mall was changing into this social place of connection, like the markets that ancients knew well. The stricken, as they healed, wanted more from life. They wanted connection and health and they demanded these new (maybe really ancient) things in the market place.

After an incredibly busy day at her parents’ little 8-ingredient shop, Satya went home to share another glorious meal with her parents. Her mother began to tell her about her day, a day of great insight and knowing. You see, her mother had gotten lost on the way to the old market. Lost, she had to raise her eyes and look around. She had to connect with those she always considered the stricken.

Satya’s mother came by a 2-ingredient shop filled with cures with roots from her own 8-ingredient shop. She recognized the shop owner as one of the brave souls who walked into her 8-ingedient shop so many years ago, when most thought such things were silly and foolish. Satya’s mother was greeted with an all-encompassing embrace. The 2-ingredient shop owner held her and thanked her and told her how the 8-ingredient shop had inspired her work, her life, and how she had learned how to help the stricken ones-- little sips at a time. She told Satya’s mother how many of her shop customers travel far just to go to the root of it all-- the 8-ingredient shop. She said that they do this because they now know what makes them well. Present in the moment, Satya’s mother felt connection and not fear. Things were good in the land.

Many, many years passed. Satya has grown to be a fine old woman. She has lived long enough to see the stricken cured, nearly all. She has watched as the 2 and 3-ingredient cures have drawn masses to the 8-ingredient cure. She has seen the wisdom of the ancients flourish as enlightenment across the land has grown.

Satya, the seer of all, has come to know that with connection, trust in humanity, and love that all things are possible. And so she sits, managing her 8-ingredient shop, so full and bountiful with wisdom, smiling and knowing--  with a big open heart.

Catherine Cook-Cottone
The Yoga Bag

No comments: