Yoga And Contentment, September 2016

A yoga seminar was held from the 16th till the 18th of September at the Our Lady of the Well convent on the initiative of the Syndicate of Yoga Teachers in Lebanon and Ms. Jacqueline Yazbeck.

Ms. Isabelle Morin-Larbey, President of the National Federation of Yoga Teachers in France (FNEY), and Ms. Gisèle Siguier-Sauné, philosopher and lecturer at the Catholic University of Paris were the guests of honor at the seminar. The presence of His Eminence Bishop Paul Rouhana, and Father Jean Akiki, professor of philosophy at the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik, during Friday’s conference given by Ms. Siguier-Sauné, is also to be noted.

What is contentment?
It is simply the state of being satisfied, complete and in harmony with oneself, the state of happiness. In order to be contented with what we have, it is necessary to work on the mitigation of the envy or the need of having more since we got into the habit of defining what we Are and how happy we Are based on what we Have!
It is noteworthy that the Upanishad, the Indian texts written somewhere between the 7th and the 4th century BC, and the Yoga Sûtra, the basic texts of yoga philosophy dating back to the 1st and 2nd centuries AD, gave a particular attention to “contentment”, Samtosha in Sanskrit.

What is yoga for?
Yoga helps us find the way to our inner self in order to develop our capacity to be contented. It places us on the path of finding inner peace. By practicing yoga, we seek to discern the inner causes of suffering or malaise that can be linked to the memory of a past holding us back. For the author of the Yoga Sûtra, “pain, anxiety, agitation and chaotic respiration” are all symptoms of this malaise. The best remedy would therefore consist of facing and shaping the latter thanks to the repetitive practice of yoga. The purpose is to “tame the agitation of the mind” in order not to stop thinking, but to develop our capacity to discern and listen to our inner self by letting go. At this point, yoga becomes the path that unlocks new potentials to feel free and contented. It is an invitation to become artisans of peace wherever we are.