In Sanskrit, one translation of the word Bhakti is love. The path of Bhakti yoga can be described as the path of love. Neem Karoli Baba, a 20th century saint and teacher of Bhakti yoga, inspired his yogis through unconditional love. One of his messages perfectly encapsulates this beautiful tradition. He simply said, “love everyone.” At first that may seem like a tall order, especially in regard to people that get under our skin.
But the truth of the matter is that at our very core we all want to be loved. We want to be appreciated and feel like we belong. Think about how kind gestures and heartfelt compassionate words can make you feel, whether it comes from a child, parent, friend, lover, or pet. Love has the power to heal and strengthen. It is a tremendous force and can leads us to serve and honor one another. When we initiate our actions through a place of love, we have the ability to open to a more peaceful existence not only for ourselves, but also for everyone around us. Love loosens the ego’s grip and allows us to see the divine in all living beings.
So why not take a big courageous step and start seeing ourselves in each other and give out to the world, what we would truly want for ourselves? As my yogi friend says, “love is never the wrong answer.”
Set your intention on dedicating your yoga practice to someone you love. Turn each pose into an offering for that love. Let it inspire each of your movements and notice how it can change the energy of your practice.