|The Art of Saying NO when necessary|
by yoga teacher Gregorian Bivolaru
Yoga provides a large scope of ancient techniques, which can also be some means of de-conditioning and spiritual self-accomplishment of the human being. The positive suggestions here can be comprised in everyday life as a spiritual catalyser. If given thorough attention, no matter the order they are taken, they shall be utterly helpful in our de-conditioning process, which finally leads to an accelerating spiritual accomplishment.
We sometimes do not understand that we literally get to live after we begin to firmly say “no”. For a yogi, “NO” means to deny all that is not real. Against all appearances, saying “NO” actually means to evince utmost kindness both towards the others and to ourselves. This sharp and plain attitude can spare us years and even a whole life of pain and misery, which we accept in equanimity.
To say “NO” actually means to utter a steady “NO” to torpidity, to useless expectations, to malicious illusions, opinions, to negative conditionings, to hasty judgements, to stupid critiques, to forged culpability, to disturbances, fear, suspicion, jealousy, gossip and mechanic answers. In short, this means to withstand all evil. To say “NO” also means unconditioned obedience and devotion towards God and spiritual detachment.
To say “NO” actually means “YES”
For “NO” is not necessarily a negativist, rejecting attitude, pointing an uptight and denying attitude. In certain conditions, when we are inspired by our intelligence and inner common-sense, this word actually means acceptance, opening, this is a mysterious door towards a superior reality, despite a conspicuous inferior illusion. Therefore, this “NO” actually is a double-edged attitude: one is to firmly say “NO” to an aspect that we deny, and the other is “YES” towards the aspect we accept. To set an example, we firmly say “NO” to disturbances, which implies “YES” to confidence; by denying jealousy, we thereby accept detached love.
Sometimes we say “YES” when we actually wish we said sharply “NO”: this is out of fear, frailty, and politeness or simply due to an awkward mechanical attitude, which we couldn’t remove so far. In such case we should learn how to use the wasted time, in order to learn at least for the future how to say “NO” on first occasion. Sooner or later we shall do it, anyway; therefore why shouldn’t we earlier? If we fail again to say “NO”, we shouldn’t be surprised that we end up in bitter, grudge and useless humility, in the same state of apathy, stiff like robots.
The ability of standing against some situations is not a negativist attitude in itself. When we firmly reject a bad situation, state or emotion, when we no longer accept to save evil thoughts and attitudes, “NO” gets a positive connotation. In a paradoxical way, at first sight, which basically is highly natural, uttering the firm “NO” at the right moment, we shall presently see inside of us increasing compassion, tolerance, humour and forgiveness towards the others and ourselves. Never is too late to say the firm “NO”. Be aware now that there is no friend of yours, no spiritual master or Guru to say “NO” for you. It is up to you to do it as quick as possible. From the spiritual evolution perspective, the word “NO” and the attitude it implies get the greatest importance for Yoga as any genuine Spiritual path actually means the wish to know more, a specific spiritual opening and therefore the Aspiration for a new reality connected to elevated states of consciousness. All these imply the constant skill in saying “NO”.
We shall say “NO” to the old habits, paralysing prejudices, the clichés and bad customs
These will not be easily removed, for we nurtured and encouraged them to exist in our being for lives. The temptation will persist long time after, but we may say now that the presence of “NO” became essential to us. In such cases a volitive effort based on positive suggestion will allow us to firmly say “NO, I shall no loger be prey to those awkward attachments; I shall not resume that bad habit”, which may be helpful. The Guru (spiritual master) will be the pioneer, the “YES” bearer who will clearly show you the new stages to go through thereafter. But you are the only one to follow the way, to endeavour yourself by means of the say “NO” philosophy in order not fail again in the sorrowful condition that you have just escaped. To say “NO” may be the most positive thing in our life, but sometimes the most difficult, too.
There have been many references about the meaning of “NO”. But learning to actually say it in the right moment sometimes is a real art. This is a lesson to learn on his own. First, you must decide to do it, then it’s a matter of succeeding it. Once we get here, many of us may wonder: how shall I learn to do this? First of all we learn to say “NO” by listening to our heart, which will disclose many mysterious reasons, unknown to our mind, yet. Our heart manifests inside of us the spiritual intuition, this is why it does not need any doctorate or titles of honour. It simply knows and promptly inspires us at the right moment. We just have to go beyond appearances and we shall joyfully notice there that we can see. This is the time we shall realise that this is God’s inspiration, the being’s self-accomplishment, the enlightenment, detachment, awakening, the intuition of truth, the integration and fulfilment. Then, we can say: “I managed to say “NO”.
Say “NO” may shock the others, and even shock yourself.
This inner attitude can also wake you up, as an extraordinary inner cathalyser, in helping the others in order to make them help themselves.
Saying “NO” can be a real spiritual path for some people. And they may be right, indeed. Somewhere in the world, saying “NO” to the chaining illusion is called yoga, somewhere else it is zen; other would rather call it spiritual awakening. However, beyond all these, saying “NO” is exactly what it is: firmly saying “NO”.
Saying “NO” is also a process to mark the spiritual leap of life. One cannot say “NO” without constant focus. This also means not to take anything for granted and fully use one’s brain to reject stupidity. When you say “NO”, no matter you don’t realise it, there is lot of energy saved. Also you redeem and really overpass yourself. When you can firmly say “NO”, you instantly stop being a robot and start living for real. Some people would rather believe you do it out of cruelty, lack of compassion, malice and irresponsibility. But this should be no worry and we always must keep in mind that everyone has the great privilege of opinion.
To say “NO” is the easiest thing in the world
In order to learn how to say “NO”, many spiritual searchers join lots of games, schools or groups. Some of them start to change their names and wear so-called spiritual garments. Many of them think, or fall to passive conditioning that they are specially chosen, even when they are not that advanced, actually. Many of them are trapped in collecting and reading endless books, more or less elevated. Also, they might stubbornly attend various practices, which they mistake as spiritual due to their ignorance. When we are really determined to wake up, we may start by mocking at ourselves, the way we used to be. Then we become quiet aware that we joke at ourselves and than we may burst to cry or to laugh. Even if saying “NO” is the easiest way in the world, some people must resume it several times before succeeding in this matter. Some others simply go astray.
Later we shall succeed to laugh about it, to cry, to get detached for good or even to write a book. Also, we shall see that saying “NO” can completely change our life, by transfiguration and therefore it helps us see it sublime and wonderful. In such a moment we can choose whether to stay free or after a while we get back to turpitude.
We can always make a choice, but the best choice and also the easiest is to carefully listen to your heart and act in common sense and wisdom. Then we shall be surprised to discover that all therapies and all spiritual books actually refer to this urge only: “Learn how to say NO”!
Then we can laugh at all, or we can endeavour to share our secret to the others or to freely put across all that we want to do. Also we may decide thanks to this freedom not to do anything, just eat when we are hungry, drink when thirsty, sleep when feel tired, love when fall in love and firmly say “NO” when we feel like saying “NO”.It’s up to you whatever you are doing or will do. The basic thing is that you must never forget that it’s always up to you. For when you really ask it for, God always gives unto you, but when you don’t do that He forces you to take WHAT YOU DESERVE ONLY.