In my last post I talked about the three ways of being in the world, Pasun, Siddha and Vira.
Most of the time we are in the state of vira, trying our best, sometimes winning and sometimes losing, but being called upon to be warriors in our own lives. You are the hero in your own story.
What does it take to be a warrior? the answer may surprise you. To have a warrior’s courage you need three things. Vanity, pride and style. Yep – not the qualities you thought would show up in a blog post about yoga right? Most yoga traditions want you to try and rid yourself of your ego. But really, who would you be without it? I think there is a big difference between egotism and having a healthy sense of who you are, and making the most of your unique self.
Vanity is the hardest one to wrap our head around because it gets such a bad rap but I agree with Dianna Vreeland,
“I loathe narcissism, but I approve of vanity.” Diana Vreeland
Vanity to me just means you care. To become self obsessed is narcissism but vanity means you care about yourself. If I am going out into the world, it matters to me how I present myself because that is how I will be received by others. A little lipstick goes a long way. For you, the act of caring about yourself may take a different form. When women are battling breast cancer for example, they will often get a ‘makeover’, complete with makeup and sometimes a fetching scarf or a wig. Is this act of vanity wrong; or is it in fact an act of self affirmation?
Pride is another one of those tricky subjects. It is included as one of the seven deadly sins, but lets look at its definition.
The Oxford dictionary says pride is
“A feeling of deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one’s own achievements, the achievements of one’s close associates, or from qualities or possessions that are widely admired.”
If you can do something really well, please do it! Being proud of your accomplishments is much better than holding back out of some false sense of modesty. Has anyone ever said to you ‘who do you think you are?’ It is usually meant to keep you down and ‘in your place’. A warrior must believe she is worth fighting for, worth standing up for, worth being proud of.
Style is not fashion. Style is how you wear yourself, it is your unique way of presenting in the world. Your style may be elegant, flamboyant, minimal or over the top but it is an expression of how you wish to be seen. Every good warrior has style. If you don’t believe style is important, Check out this trailer for a movie called “Advanced Style”
“Show class, have pride, display character. If you do that winning takes care of itself” Paul Bryant