Santosha (Contentment) – The Mindfulness Meditation of Taking in the Good

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A quote that inspires me or reminds me to tap into a feeling of gratitude or contentment in Sanskrit known as Santosha is this one:

“Remember what you have now, was once something you dreamed about” 

We may have all had that childlike aspiration of “I can’t wait until when I’m older ….”

“I can’t wait until I leave school, get married, get a job, become retired and so on…”

The Niyamas are the suggestions prescribed for personal observance. Like the yamas, the five niyamas are not exercises or actions to be simply studied. They represent far more than an attitude. They refer to the attitude yogis must adopt towards themselves as they create a code for living soulfully.  This week’s blog is on the Niyama of Contentment. 

This is about modesty and the feeling of being content with what we have. To be at peace within and content with one’s lifestyle, finding contentment even while experiencing life’s difficulties, for life becomes a process of growth.  Accepting that there is a purpose for everything, yoga calls it karma, and we cultivate contentment ‘to accept what happens’. This practice can open us up to living a life with more gratitude.

A little friend I have who is at pre-school (a good friends daughter, Vivian) has a great practice she invites everyone at the dinner table to do. She invites us to go around the table and share the best part of the day. Not only does this help us practice gratitude, it can help us dig the little neuro goat track of Santosha (Contentment) a little deeper by remembering how many things we have to be grateful for. Sharing them and remembering them helps change the brain.  Over time doing this, again and again, helps us balance the negativity bias to more readily see ‘what’s wrong’ and instead we begin to see and live our reality that “What I have now is what I once dreamed of”

Enjoy it.




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