17 Mar Success: honouring our personal victories
When I hear the word “Success”, I tend to think that it is a goal to achieve, something that will hopefully happen in the (distant) future. This month’s theme is connected to the Sacred Path card, Counting Coup or Victory. Counting Coup refers to the tradition of Native American battles and to the practice of celebrating victories symbolically by collecting items such as eagle feathers, horse hair or a Medicine Bundle.
The enlightening perspective on the theme of the Success for me comes from already taking the time to celebrate what we have achieved, our personal victories, no matter how small they may seem to us. We spend so much energy thinking about what we would like to do and achieve that we often forget to honour what we have done, what we do, what we are already successful with. Victory, or success, can be material or spiritual; it comes from moving forward and acting in harmony with ourselves. Every single one of our days actually contains victories and successes and this month I invite you to celebrate them and feel a sense of gratitude for these blessings.
This practice connects to the exercises of Inner Reflection in Arhatic Yoga or Yoga of Synthesis. When we learn to reflect on our day, on the various aspects of our character building, the emphasis is to pay as much attention to what we would like to improve, as to what we are already doing well. We look at negative behaviour and patterns, where they come from and how to correct them, but we also congratulate ourselves on what we are happy with. This balance is the key to a healthy self-esteem.
According to the Native American tradition, the next step after honouring our victories and successes is to share our abundance and knowledge with the people around us who need it, with the people who support us. The word for this spiritual practice is “Give-Away”, a tradition which is honoured in cultures across the world.
Sharing our knowledge and abundance with others, “Giving-Away” is a central principle in spirituality, energy work and when reflecting on karma. We sow what we reap and what we put out and give away tends to come back to us. Holding on to material things means that the energy stagnates and cannot flow or expand; it reflects a lack of generosity which is considered a key virtue in spiritual development.
How do you celebrate and share your successes? I would love to hear your experiences.