REMEMBER TO KEEP THE CONSCIOUS CONNECTION DURING THIS TIME
The Covid19 pandemic has brought about the stark reality of the uncertainty of life. As we tread through over a hundred days of lockdown in South Africa, the anxiety of the effects of the pandemic becomes even more engrained in our daily life. The way we see the world has changed, our relationships have changed, emotions are running high and the safety of our family has taken the forefront of our mind.
Bhagavad-Gita (As It Is) – Chapter 2 Text 41
mātrā-sparśhās tu kaunteya śhītoṣhṇa-sukha-duḥkha-dāḥ
āgamāpāyino ’nityās tans-titikṣhasva bhārata
“O son of Kunti, the contact between the senses and the sense objects gives rise to fleeting perceptions of happiness and distress. These are non-permanent, and come and go like the winter and summer seasons. O descendent of Bharat, one must learn to tolerate them without being disturbed.”
This is a reminder that during our lifetime, we strive to live our best life in order to achieve a higher consciousness. The pandemic has brought about more focus on how we live and how we should spend our time – in devotion, meditation and also a holistic integration of trying to keep check of our material responsibilities and spiritual sustenance. We understand that happiness and distress are inter-related and therefore have to acknowledge both – keeping in mind our higher purpose during this lifetime.
As women we play so many roles. The core of our being constitutes great love and care within our character. Often times, we tend to care for all those around us and forget about caring for ourselves in the process. We therefore have to pay specific attention to both our physical and emotional health during the pandemic in order to keep ourselves well, thereby being able to care for our family.
Spending time meditating, practising yoga and getting in exercise will help keep calm and balance physical and mental health. Due to the fact that our roles and duties are multi-fold, we should never forget that connecting with our inner being – the paramatma (super soul) is of great importance. By doing this we are caring for ourselves – and self care should never be at the bottom of our to-do list!
Here are a few ways that you can navigate through this difficult time:
Offer yourself a little extra kindness!
During this time – expect to experience different emotions (more often than previously). It is okay to feel down – so do not be hard on yourself. Most importantly remember to find ways that work for you to lift yourself when you are feeling down – do not get stuck in that ‘low’ emotion. Talk to a friend, take time out and just be kind to yourself. You may not function at your optimal during this time, it is okay.
Balancing work and family
If you are a woman who is juggling working and managing family during this unusual time – remember that a routine is important to keep the day in check. You may not receive a 100% routine everyday, but strive to keep a good structure at home. This will ease some pressure on you – to help manage your time and balance through your day.
Exercise and nutrition
During the pandemic we have either become more mindful of our physical health or else become a little more indulgent! Whatever it maybe, remember to get some light fitness into the day and try to become more conscious of keeping a structured meal-time.
Receive both happiness and distress mindfully
As stated in the Bhagavad-Gita (quoted above) – living a balanced life where we view the meaning of happiness and distress as part of God’s plan – will help us understand that whatever we experience during this pandemic is based on a higher purpose. That certainly does not mean we become irresponsible in our actions. However, when we view life as having higher meaning, that not even a blade of grass moves without the sanction of the Lord, we become more receptive to dealing with happiness and distress, without feeling overwhelmed.
Ultimately, living consciously and being present in all you do is what counts. As the uncertainty of life continues to be self-consuming, it is your choice to focus on positivity – keeping in mind our end goal – to achieve a higher consciousness.
Focus on all the wonderful aspects of your life, the beauty and uniqueness of your individuality and the opportunity that this lifetime has offered us – to reconnect with God
Article by Krsangi Radhe dasi
Krsangi Radhe dasi is the Minsister of ISKCON South Africa Vaishnavi Ministry and the Public Relations and Communications Manager of ISKCON Durban. She is also a certified life coach, NLP practitioner, educator in the public sector. She is the founder of Sankalpa Coaching.