What is Aparigraha?
A means not, parigraha means to grasp or greed. Aparigraha means non-grasphing of things around you. When expectations are high, one becomes greedy, and once you allow the greed to grow, it is difficult to get rid of it. You want one thing, then you want another - you will never be satisfied. This wanting is graham, grasping at things or ideas.
अपरिग्रहस्थैर्ये जन्मकथंतासंबोधः॥३९॥- YS 2.39
One who oversomes possessiveness and a grasping mind, he or she will gain knowledge of the past, present, and future.
Astanga Yoga Anusthana - R. Sharath Jois
7 Ways to Practice Aparigraha (Non-Possessiveness)
by Irene (Aradhana) Petryszak
What do you hold on to (maybe a little too tightly) in your life? Does it still serve you or could it be time to let it go? By releasing what is no longer useful, we open ourselves to fresh ideas, new relationships, and more harmonious ways of living and being. These tips may help you practice the principle of non-possessiveness.
Let It Go. Possessions take up space and energy—in your head as well as in your home. So try this: Every time you buy something new, let go of something old—give it away, or toss it out. By letting go of things from the past, you can live more fully in the present.
Breathe. When we get stressed out, we tend to hold our breath. This makes us even more anxious. Release the breath and allow it to flow fully and deeply. Then you will feel more relaxed, open, and spontaneous.
Practice Self-Care. When we are afraid and insecure, we may feel a need to cling to and control those who are closest to us. That rarely works. Instead, find ways to nurture and center yourself so that you feel independent and strong in your own right, and can allow others to be who they need to be.
Be Positive. When we cling to negative thoughts, emotions, or memories, we spiral into destructive habit patterns. By replacing negative thoughts with positive ones, and by remembering your mantra, you create a harmonious space for yourself and others.
Forgive. Let go of painful memories from your past. Free yourself by offering forgiveness to those who have hurt you and to yourself.
Practice. Sometimes we try so hard to be perfect—in our asanas, meditation, contemplation—that we miss the essence of practice. Do your best and then remember to release—physically, mentally, emotionally. Let go and stay open to guidance from within.
Be generous. Expand your capacity to stretch yourself. Share your time, your energy, your knowledge, your attention, your connections. Donate. Volunteer. Give in whatever way you can.
This month lets try to cultivate the principle of non possessiveness. Try to experience every moment anew, even those that are familiar. Spend time being present in what you are doing, for me this month, that will be sitting, I will bring in a mantra and try my best to be present in that moment so I can let go of all the others. Experience your true self and bring it into every moment of your living!
What will you bring to your life this month to help practice the principle of non-possessiveness?
"Find the love you seek, by first finding the love within yourself. Learn to rest in that place within you that is your true home".
― Sri Sri Ravi Shankar