siilver linings

Silver linings.

One of the most helpful benefits of our yoga practice is its effect on the mind. First, yoga increases our awareness. Then, we can watch our mind’s antics and change its direction when needed. In other words, yoga improves our outlook. The mental strength acquired through yoga helps us to see the broader, brighter side of situations. This skill is especially important during stressful times.

When reports first appeared about a new virus spreading through China, few people could have imagined the life we experience today. We largely ignored those stories at the time. It was life as usual.

As reports of the virus increased, we realized that a pandemic was inevitable. At that time I noticed an unusual thought springing into my mind. It was repeatedly saying, like a mantra, “Look for the sliver lining, look for the silver lining.”

Experience has taught me that if I look for something positive, I will certainly find it. Years of training jumped into action.

It’s not surprising that a wealth of heartwarming and inspirational stories have recently surfaced. Human beings are resilient. Silver linings in our clouds of fear and worry are showing up everywhere. Many of them have gone viral on the internet, like that noted below.

Brother Richard Hendrick, a Franciscan priest who lives in Ireland, posted a touching poem on his blog, Mindful Mystical Musings. The poem has been featured on the media worldwide. It is shared here with Brother Richard’s permission and blessing:


Yes there is fear.
Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying.
Yes there is sickness.
Yes there is even death.
They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise
You can hear the birds again.
They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.
They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them.
They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland
Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.
Today a young woman I know
is busy spreading fliers with her number
through the neighbourhood
So that the elders may have someone to call on.
Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples
are preparing to welcome
and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary
All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting
All over the world people are looking at their neighbours in a new way
All over the world people are waking up to a new reality
To how big we really are.
To how little control we really have.
To what really matters.
To Love.
So we pray and we remember that
Yes there is fear.
But there does not have to be hate.
Yes there is isolation.
But there does not have to be loneliness.
Yes there is panic buying.
But there does not have to be meanness.
Yes there is sickness.
But there does not have to be disease of the soul
Yes there is even death.
But there can always be a rebirth of love.
Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.
Today, breathe.
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic
The birds are singing again
The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming,
And we are always encompassed by Love.
Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,

This poem is like a report of silver linings. It gives us faith in humanity. I hope you’ll share its message and sentiment with your friends and family.

Please add your own thoughts, poetry, or links to similar pieces in the comments section below.

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