Doubt and Joy

“Doubt about the effectiveness of the practice takes away the joy of doing it.”

Discussion of YS 1:14 from “The Secret of Yoga Sutra’

Pandit Rajmani Tigunait, PhD




I’ll stop with a short list, but I could go on with pages of character defects and unfounded emotions that can take away joy of doing it!

Doing what? Doing the stuff of life. Being who I am called to be. Living out my Divine purpose.

Specifically, this sutra speaks of the practice of freeing our minds of roaming tendencies misguide our sacred connection to our Divine Master. This practice includes prayer and meditation. This practice offers the opportunity to bring ourselves to a sense of stillness, breath, relaxation, and breath control which prepares us to meditate. Meditation is the Divine gift, leading us to our soul without the confines of all the barriers created in our minds by the stuff of life.

I wish I had a nickel for every time someone offered me the gift of a Spiritual practice, to which I said halfheartedly, “oh, sure, I’ll give it a try but I doubt it will work for me.” I’d have a respectable bank account. How about you?

Our teacher and author is calling my attention to the need to practice engaging in life with an ‘ardent effort’ supported by the faith in the One who wishes only love and grace for me, for us all. So why do I continuously battle with doubt, fear and anxiety?

I chalk it up to my human nature.

OK. I’ll accept that to a point. Yet at some point I am called to quit making excuses and continue to reflect more ardently on my Divine nature. Yes, I am made up of both. But truth be told: I find it easy to get lazy and accept my humanity as an excuse to put forth less than an ardent effort.

Fact: I am sober today.

As I ponder a bit further, I am moved by the unbelievable patience of my God. I frequently sense Her hand on my shoulder with a quiet voice saying “Greg, lighten up a bit. We’re doing just fine. You are sober today.” Note the key word: WE.

Doubt, fear, anxiety: these are the results of trying to live life on my own terms. Hmmmm!

Here WE are again. WE are in this together as WE are the flesh of our Divine Master. WE live the promises together. WE are the collective ‘ardent’ effort of God’s love. WE are in it together.

As always, I am brought to a humble, deep and confident sense of gratitude and trust.

See you beside the restful waters.


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