This is the story of the Ocean and the Wave. It is story about Truth so we could call it a True story! And like all stories, we need to be quiet and listen to them, to feel them, and to allow them to weave their magic. Otherwise, we lose what it is they are telling us.
Here it is:
The Ocean and the Wave
Imagine a vast Ocean, endless and eternal. In places it has different names, the Pacific, the Atlantic, the Indian, and so on. But it is all One Ocean.
It may be calm or rough, deep or shallow, warm or cold, aqua green, blue or even black. There may be ripples on the top, or it may be still, or it may be stormy and filled with roaring breaking waves. But it is all One Sea.
Think about a calm and quiet day with the Ocean totally still and flat. Then the wind or tide brings a small rise in the water and a wave is formed. Here and there other waves form. All over the Ocean waves start to rise and fall.
Imagine that each of these Waves is a human birth. So each Wave (or child) comes and what do we do? We give him/her a name! We tell it that it is separate and special. We warn it to be careful about others in case they take what it has away. We give that Wave (or child) an ego (or untrue belief it is only the individual wave) that says it is different. Suddenly all the boundaries and limitations of this birth are experienced.
So what happens then?
The child experiences many things that are not helpful for a human. They become inhuman! Maybe a little or maybe a lot. Things like greed, selfishness, possessiveness, loneliness, and especially fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of what we do not understand, fear of losing what we have, fear of failure, and fear of all the shortcoming we have. And we are reminded all the time of these fears!
Why do we experience these fears and limitations?
Because we have identified ourselves with the Wave, with the body and mind, we think this is who we are. We think this is all there is and that scares us and we feel very alone. We know this body and mind has many limitations.
Think about the Ocean and the Wave for a bit. When the Wave was still in the Ocean it was the Ocean. When the Wave raised its head and was given a name, what was it? It was still the Ocean. And when it returned to the Ocean what was it then? Of course it was the Ocean also.
It was always the Ocean…
So why the fear and limitation and selfishness of the Wave?
It is because it forgot it was the Ocean.
This is the sadness of being human. The nature of the human is to give, to love, to be considerate, to be disciplined, to respect, and to share. Our nature is to do to others what we would like others to do to us. To always give freely.
So why should we love others and share and give to them? Because we are ALL the Ocean – the other Wave (or person) is us. Even the Wave that is far away is our very Self. But first we can start by caring for those Waves closest to us.
This understanding is what is meant by Yoga. It is simple yet profound. Other names we might use for Yoga include Truth, Oneness, Moksham, Nirvana, Self Realisation, Enlightenment, God, and so on. The Truth is beyond Name and Form.
It is important not to get too caught up in the physical practices of Hatha Yoga etc and consider this to be Yoga – these are simply a means to help prepare the body and mind to attain Yoga. They help to develop discipline and self awareness to have the stability to sit in meditation and gain one pointed concentration. In yogic practice this is considered “preparing the field”. What is the field? Our Body and Mind.
We have never been separate. But we have FORGOTTEN the Truth.
We limit ourselves by identifying with the limited body and mind. We forget this is an instrument given to us for a specific purpose. This idea of separation, this ignorance of the Truth that we are the unlimited Ocean, is what creates all suffering. The way to remove suffering is through knowledge, the removal of ignorance.
There are many paths all leading to Yoga and each one is correct. And in fact there is nowhere to go. We simply need to remove that which is preventing us from seeing the whole. All that is Truth is essentially very simple. It is not mystical! We will feel it and experience in our own way.
Do not seek anything or think there is something you have lost or somewhere you need to go – just remember you are the eternal Ocean.
Read more about Yoga.