The Waiting Game

I remember high school dances, with us girls all lined up waiting for a teenage boy to come ask us to dance. Only once a year could the girl offer the invitation, on Sadie Hawkins Day. The rest of the time, it was a waiting game. It’s a waiting game again.

How long will this go on? We don’t know. How bad will it get? We don’t know. How long will it take to get going again? We don’t know. How many people will die? We don’t know and we’re trying to make a big difference in that number.   You’re staying home and maintaining social distance not only to protect yourself, but to protect the most vulnerable people. It’s a small price to pay in order to save millions of lives.

It’s true, tests are not readily available in most of America. It’s true, you can be sick and not have COvid 19. It’s true, you can have it but not know it. The reality is that lots of people get it and have no symptoms.

Even if you do get the virus, WHO tells us that the majority of people who contract COvid 19 suffer only mild, cold-like symptoms. Most people who get it don’t need hospitalization — only some of them. Basically, we’re all limiting our activities in order to protect the elderly and those with problems like high blood pressure, heart and lung problems or diabetes. You’re related to some of them. They are worth protecting.

What do you do while you wait? Every little sniffle is scary. The anxiety can be crushing, especially for those now facing financial challenges. The isolation can make you feel lonely and depressed. And it is going to continue for a while. How long? Nobody knows.

What a perfect time to meditate! You’ve needed to do it for a long time. Now you may even have time to do it. And it may save your sanity.

What a great time to do more yoga! Instead of getting by on 30 minutes of daily practice, you could do an hour or three. Not only will you improve your immune system, you’ll even feel better.

What a great time to delve more deeply into the mystical teachings of yoga! You can sign up for online courses or work your way through a yoga text. My own bookshelves hold a few books I’ve never opened, even though they looked good enough to buy. This is a delicious opportunity to read slowly, to savor the teachings that have come to us through thousands of years.

I once checked into a hotel in rural India. It was located near an Ashram I was visiting daily for a week or two. As the bellman walked me to my room, he pointed out the swimming pool and tennis courts, along with a game room where I could check out various games. He said, “All this is to help you kill time.” Shocked, I stared at him and said, “I don’t want to kill time. I want to make the best use of it that I can. That’s why I’m here, to study at the nearby Ashram.”

Do you plan to kill time for the next days, weeks or months? Or might you make good use of it?

Satguru Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati leads Svaroopa® Vidya Ashram in Downingtown PA. Honored both in India and America, she is an inspiring teacher with a loving manner and a great sense of humor. Before becoming a swami (yoga monk), as Rama Berch, she served the yoga community as the founding president of Yoga Alliance. Traveling and teaching nationally and internationally, she is authorized to initiate people into deep meditation through Shaktipat, as did Swami Muktananda, her own Guru. The Ashram website features extensive Freebies, including articles and audio recordings on the principles of consciousness as taught by the sages of India, as well as how to apply them in your life today.

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