I am not sure how many of us saw President-elect Obama’s victory speech last night. Or how many of us that did have this honor did so with dry eyes. Kupai, my six year old son, came to me during this speech with huge tears in his eyes. I though he had hurt himself, possibly stubbed his toe, but no, he was overcome with emotion.
Tonight, Wednesday November 5, at our weekly meeting from 6 to 7:30 PM, I would like to take some time to reflect on the ways that President-elect Obama’s message of hope and mature realism interweaves with our spiritual practice of yoga and meditation.
I can’t help but reach back in time to another eloquent transformation figure. In a remarkable speech he called Remaining awake Through a Great Revolution, which he made on March 13, 1968, at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. uttered these words:
“Through our scientific and technological genius, we have made of this world a neighborhood and yet we have not had the ethical commitment to make of it a brotherhood.
But somehow, and in some way, we have got to do this. We must all learn to live together as brothers or we will all perish together as fools.
We are tied together in the single garment of destiny, caught in an inescapable network of mutuality. And whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly. For some strange reason I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. And you can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the way God’s universe is made; this is the way it is structured.”
Dr King’s words continue to echo in my mind as I sat and listened to President-elect Obama’s speech last night, a chilly night in a huge park in Chicago, in front of 500,000 supporters, in front of Oprah and the Rev. Jesse Jackson:
“We are tied together in a single garment of destiny, caught in an inescapable network of mutuality.”
Dr. King ended his speech forty years ago with these words:
“We must see this, believe this, and live by it if we are to remain awake through a great revolution.”
Our practice calls on us to indeed remain awake through a great revolution, both inside and outside, as at some point don’t see a difference between the two.
“We must all learn to live together as brothers or we will perish as fools.”