Cambio Instructor Alyssa Corley is returning with a bare look of bringing yoga off the mat. As cambio owner, Amber Richman reminds us, "Yoga is the art of personal responsibility," and this short, poignant post is the epitome of this sentiment and sure to inspire all. If you're looking to share a snapshot of your journey with our readers, please reach out to Austin at
Making Peace with Darkness
I’m scared of the dark. I have been for as long as I can remember. I’m pretty sure being four years old and watching Diagnosis Murder wasn’t helpful. When I was a kid my house didn’t have electricity except for whatever the solar panels soaked up during the day. At night my family relied on oil lamps and flashlights, and for me...a metal twirling baton and my trusty mini mag light were always tucked under my pillow. My toes could never be uncovered and my head was always buried under a comforter with just a tiny breathing hole for my nose. I don’t know why I was okay with leaving my nose vulnerable and exposed...I guess I wasn’t scared enough to allow myself to suffocate.
Even now, as a thirty five year old woman, I have a hard time with windows at night. As the sun begins to dim I find myself habitually closing curtains and turning on lamps in rooms that I think I may need to visit later. Sometimes, when I’m feeling brave and in a mood to conquer, I will step out on my porch and stare up at the moon. My mind tells me this isn’t safe but I tell it to be quiet...that darkness can be calm, it can be peaceful, it can even sparkle. I love to watch the black sky sparkle.
Lately I’ve become aware that there are those places, those corners within me, I would rather not explore. They don’t feel good, they don’t feel open...they don’t feel safe. They feel like an alley with no street light. They feel like being lost in the woods without a head lamp. They feel like there’s something behind the shower curtain. But the truth is, if I don’t eventually take a peek in I’m wasting valuable real estate. I’m allowing parts of me, my temple, to either stay vacant or host unwelcome occupants.
It takes courage to step in to unknown territory, to spaces that are mysterious and uncomfortable. Sometimes stepping into the shadows means coming face to face with our worst fears, our guilt, our memories. The thing is though, if never exposed, they can never heal. They will stay scary and hidden - they will never have the opportunity to transform to a safe porch bathed in moonlight.
Only the individual can choose to light up their inner room. For some of us, this will take time. Maybe just a crack in the door to begin...perhaps later we might take a flashlight and take a quick survey of the room...eventually working our way to sliding a hand along the wall and flipping on the switch.
Light doesn’t always feel good. It can be blinding. It can cause us to squint and make our vision blurry for a moment or two. My dad get’s migraines from light....flashlights, sunlight, blinking toys...you name it. The thing is though, the soul craves it. The heart grows toward it. Loves develops under it.
Embracing the darkness within is good. This doesn’t mean that we accept evil, but that we are aware of it, and we choose to face it. We embrace it, we make peace with it...because only with peace can we be comfortable enough to start a dialogue, to compromise, to let go. When we create harmony and understanding, we can set ego aside and begin to release what no longer serves us. This creates more room for joy, for love, for serving ourselves and others. With time and intention, we begin to reflect only goodness. We become transparent. Translucent. We shimmer and shine and all beings are drawn towards us because we are warm and safe and pure love essence. We magnify the Divine. We are light.
I’ve adopted a new affirmation this week. It goes something like “I’m not afraid of the darkness because I am light itself.” You are light itself. You don’t need to reach for the stars because you already are one.