Messages from the soul...
|Posted on 8 July, 2015 at 10:55|
If you’ve ever met me, smiling is usually how I will greet you. I love to smile!
Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Buddhist Monk, and author of several books, said these words “smiling is mouth yoga.” And this is my understanding of this valuable teaching…
When we greet someone with a smile it is welcoming and inviting. Right away when we smile it puts the other at ease. We seem to soften on the inside and outside. Smiling makes us more approachable.
It is said that it takes less muscles to smile than to frown. When we smile our eyes light up, it seems that laughter isn’t far behind a smile. A smile also has this ability to lighten our hearts. A smile can cross all languages and sorrow.
When we don’t smile to another we sense that we are not welcomed into the surroundings, or that the other person is too busy to acknowledge our presence, it stirs doubt of the environment or situation. A lack of a smile feels like a closed door. A closed heart. A closed moment.
Sometimes we have to smile to get through a day and the smile we give to another can aid in getting them through their day. I’ve had many arrive at the studio and say “no matter what, when I walk through that door, regardless of the day I’ve had, your smile greets me and I know that I am home.”
You see, when we smile we acknowledge another person’s soul. We are connecting our ‘beingness’ – our hearts – acknowledgement of the other person. And isn’t that what we all want - to be seen - to feel a form of love.
Have you ever walked past a person with a straight face and began to smile at them as they approached. You can see the person soften and a smile on their face begins to take shape. Perhaps that person hasn’t had anyone even acknowledge them all day long or for days.
I believe this teaching is extremely beneficial – giving a smile is one the easiest form of a gift we can give to another. You never know how another’s day has been and a smile can make all the difference in the world to the one that never receives a smile.
In a perfect world I think Thich Nhat Hanh would prescribe hugging everyone but since that isn’t always welcomed, I believe his teaching of smiling - is the next best thing. The Yoga of the Heart.
~ Smile often ~