Yes, of course I want us to change the world. But I want us to do it in ways that are peaceful and liberatory for all. This takes practice.
In this collection, taken from my archives, I have grouped together some of my teachings on joy as a way to find yourself in deeper relationship with reality.
This is key to being able to graciously live with intention, when fear and social pressures ask you to keep consuming and controlling the world around you.
Joy leaves you resourced and plentiful.
We resist joy.
We fear that it is somehow selfish: “When there is so much suffering in the world, who am I to reach for joy?”
I understand. I spent years thinking that joy was an nice place to visit, but fundamentally based on ignorance or denial. Yet it would sneak up on me in little ways, learning to appreciate moments of beauty, allowing myself access to delight in food, and scents, and tiny flowers.
More than one of my friends told me that they admired my capacity for joy as I showed glee about small things and then blushed over my enthusiasm.
What I’ve realized is that, the more joy I allow myself to feel, the more energy and love I have to give back to other people.
Joy is one of the most replenishing of emotions… It’s like water on a hot day, or the first bite of a favourite food when you hungry enough to really take pleasure in it.
Far from being selfish, joy leaves you in a place that you are available to be of service, from a position of being resourced and plentiful.
Do you trust yourself with joy?
You are worthy of joy.
You will use it to do good things.
Do you believe that you are a good person whose joy arises from connection and doing meaningful things? Or are you afraid that you can’t find the feeling of joy and you will be distracted by it’s shadow cousins?
Untainted joy holds no streak of comparison.
It doesn’t come from triumph (even if it arises when you succeed at something)… It is the sensation of being truly in alignment with the world.
Foundations of Joy
My vault contains a (free!) Five-Day set of Joy practices.
“Joy is, at root, a sensation of connection. Connection with the self, connection with the breath, connection with something Bigger Than. It’s not blind optimism, and it’s not a denial of reality. It’s a combination of being grounded and fluid, confident in your ability to move from the center.
This five-day mini-course introduces foundational practices that will help you trust the experience of joy. By learning our own paths into and out of center, more intense emotions become less risky.
Joy becomes accessible.”