Namaste, loosely translated, means:

“The divine in me sees the divine in you”

Our practice for today comes from this ancient greeting used in India – when people meet, old friends, new acquaintances, casual greetings – they bring their hands together at their hearts, bow very slightly and say “Namaste” to each other.

In the West, this is not our practice at all. But internally, we can incorporate the idea of Namaste into our practice of cultivating greater compassion for ourselves and the world:

First, we must acknowledge the presence of the divine within ourselves. 

Second, we must consider that same divinity flows through all of creation. 

Third, we must practice recognizing and honoring the divine in each individual we meet.

Choose one situation where you are not occupied, and with a lot of people. Are you taking the train to work? Are you waiting in line for coffee? Are you eating in a cafeteria? Gently notice one person, name one thing you notice about them that represents their divinity, and in your mind bow to this person and say “Namaste”.

Do this practice all day long, or as often as you remember. What is your experience?

Don’t forget to light a candle and check our prayer requests today! Blessings, Arwen Pema

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One thought on “Winter Retreat Day 1: Namaste

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