“In the end, only three things matter: how much you loved..

We invite you to

Led by Lidija Georgieva

Musical performance: Julia Nelkovska, violin

December 25, 2022, Sunday at 7 p.m.

In the Yoga center and via Skype – to join, ask for:
Yoga Centre Lidija Georgieva

A New Year’s thought for reflection: “In the end, only three things matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.“ Buddha


To positive growth through the understanding of samskara, sankalpa and tapas

It’s that time again when we look ahead to the year in front of us and imagine it to be better than the one we are leaving behind. Are we ready to break some bad habits, create new positive habits, or set new goals for the coming year? Before we resolve to change the bad habits that plague us, perhaps we need to understand them a little better.

In yogic philosophy, our habituations are called samskaras. They are mental and emotional, or energy imprints. Every time a certain feeling or thought arises, it is recorded as a subtle imprint in our memory. The more intense the input of those records or the more often the record is repeated, the stronger the impression becomes. Eventually these imprints become a part of who we are and influence our behavior. It is even suggested that we may be born with a karmic inheritance of patterns through which we cycle through over and over again.

Samskara can manifest in positive ways such as healthy eating habits or a positive attitude towards life. They can also be negative, such as mental patterns that influence low self-esteem or destructive relationships. Our negative samskaras are what block our positive growth. What we need to do on the eve of the New Year is that we identify something we want to change or something we want to manifest, and so we create our “New Year’s resolution” – sankalpa. But most of the time, the determination to achieve the new goals quickly disappears, so in January or February we’ve slipped back into old habits of behavior and forget about our commitment to the new. Changing our samskaras is not an easy process. It requires a much strong will, sincere intention commitment, and a dedication to a practiced discipline that will support our intention. The process of making a decision, sankalpa, is a special way of communicating with the deepest, wisest part of ourselves about what we truly want.Once we set the intention, we must not be impatient. Significant change does not happen overnight. That’s why it’s important to set milestones to help us stay committed to our goal during the long year ahead.

So, you’ve identified the samskara (habituation) that you want to change, and you’ve created your sankalpa (sacred intention) and taken your solemn vow to remain dedicated to your intention. How are you going to keep your commitment?

The final ingredient in our recipe for change is tapas (fiery discipline). Tapas is the disciplined practice of implementing your plan for change. It is the dedicated practice that actually causes the change. The word tapas derives from the Sanskrit word “tap” which means “to heat”. Purposeful change in behavior creates heat from the friction of the new pattern rubbing against the old pattern.

Change is usually quite uncomfortable. When we consciously change a habit, discomfort arises and creates emotional or physical heat. The heat generated by practicing tapas will incinerate the impurities of our negative samskaras. If we acknowledge that the discomfort generated by the discipline creates is ultimately good for us, we are more likely to remain dedicated to our practice.

In summary, tapas (fiery discipline) challenges our long-standing samsakras (patterns of behavior) and gradually burns them up and clears the way for our sankalpa (dedicated intention) to emerge as significant spiritual and psychological growth.