My kids are on holidays. We went to the shopping mall and bought some promised toys and there is a big smile and supreme satisfaction on their faces now. For how long that will last, I don’t know. The younger they were, the shorter the time span between this satisfaction and wanting the next thing. As they gradually (or in spurts) grow up more each year, they are learning to wait and practice being content with what they have a little longer each time. At least I feel like doing my job as a mother teaching them delay of satisfaction.
This satisfaction has nothing to do with Santosha or Contentment, which is a state of being rather than a temporary state of mind when we have fulfilled yet another desire.
Perhaps we get a glimpse of what true contentment is when we watch a beautiful sunset or we see the smile on someone’s face when we have given something without even expecting a thank you in return. We can also experience it when we meditate.
Furthermore true contentment stems from a place within that cannot be shaken regardless of the circumstances around us. Being content doesn’t mean I must accept any condition of life and stop growing and evolving emotionally and spiritually. I consider it a tool of reassessment that allows me to stay centred and at peace when all is not quite how I wish it was.
Santosha is one of the 5 “wise characteristics” (Yamas) of the Patanjali Yoga. The yamas and nyamas are universal in nature and applicable to any belief system as they were codified by wise people, setting guidelines to create harmony in society and within oneself and to expand consciousness. For one of many insights of what Raja Yoga is click: Raja Yoga .