The Limbs of Yoga: Contentment


Contentment (Santosha) I often wonder why we talk about happiness so much, and so infrequently talk about contentment. If ever there was a benchmark for being present, it is santosha, as contentment indicates that right here, right now, all is well. Contentment can’t be parsed in the idea that you will be content once you acquire something else, or achieve another goal. I believe contentment is the best indicator that you are working through the eight limbs and assimilating the learnings, as wherever there is yearning or discontent, there is residual attachment, and clearly you are yet to completely release from the idea that external things and achievements are defining you and your happiness.

Santosha is to enjoy what life brings us each and every day, in that very moment. So see contentment as a litmus test to use when you want to check in and measure how you are progressing in your yogic work. Do you have a sense of contentment sitting in your heart and mind, no matter what is swirling around you, can you sit with it, knowing that it is only reaction that determines whether a situation is good or bad, or simply is? That is the practice for this week, to be content in all moments, seeing them for what they are.

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