A choice is always there but are we always empowered to take it?
I’ve been running some courses where I more than once have openly talked on how this society 'enslaves' us, with fears, with false believes, by favoring corporations whose goal is far from our well-being and so on…
More than once, fellow Yoga teachers and practitioners argued with me about the above statement. In the Yoga community we have the following mindset: it’s your own choice. You create your misery and your fortune, it’s up to you. Right, I agree.
As a very devoted meditation practitioner, I know by experience that everything is Mind, so, if you don’t like it, change it. Very true, that’s how my life works… and I am very happy about it. I agree, I always have a choice. If I surprise myself with the slightest suffering, I change my Mind. I have the choice. True, very true.
But… listen to this…
Today, I was sitting in a restaurant having lunch. To the table next to me a man in his 60ties was consuming his meal alone. He for sure was friendly, it did not take him more than a minute to address me and set up a small talk. We had a pleasant exchange. Among various things he told me that his sight is much damaged. He does not see very well, everything is blurred, he could not see my expressions. Diabetes has ruined his eyes. The doctor told him he has to hope that it does not get worst. Very unfortunate. In the time we were together I’ve seen him consuming three Cokes, yes 3!
Well, it’s his choice, right? He can stop it and he will be better. If he indulges in drinking sugar in massive amounts he’s creating a reality where his diabetes makes him blind and consumes him. True.
He has a choice, right?
He has a choice even though probably in his life he was never formally informed about how much sugar is a poison for our body.
He has a choice even though his doctor probably gives him insulin so that he can continue with his eating habits.
He has a choice even though his health insurance pays only for Western treatments, and probably he does not even know about (what we funnily call) alternative therapies.
He has a choice even though no-one probably offered him any possibility of engaging in any healthy practice. Yoga studios and other possibilities are all around him, why doesn’t he take them?
He has a choice even though probably he has no clue that he has a choice…
He has a choice, true. But does he have the power to choose? If he’s been so much dis-empowered by his environment?
My lovely mindful friends: you have a choice, I have one… And that’s the choice of standing up for all these people that haven’t got the strength to do it on their own.
Next time we think ‘he has a choice’, we should also think about what is the choice we have, and what choice we are making by simply saying ‘he has a choice’.
Our discussion was concluded by me wishing him all the best for his situation and sight. He answered, holding the bottle in his hand, with the saddest joke ‘well, as long as I can read Coca-Cola here what do I want more?’.
We have a choice, we do. Let’s make it real!