I just finished reading my daily inspiration, and I came across something interesting. Originally, the word “power” meant able to be, but it is now interpreted as to be able. I find that subtle difference very interesting. It is the difference between inner power and worldly power.
Inner power comes from that place of achieving something in our lives that brings us persoanl satisfaction but does not alter others’ quality of life.Like mastering a fear of flying or recognizing our own strength in difficult situations.
Worldy power, on the other hand, affects others. By our achieving the power, someone else’s power is taken away. If we get a promotion at work, we are given more power and we are replacing someone else’s power. Other people are changed when we gain our power. They will treat us differently because of our new-found power.
There is an expression that is often used: “more power to you.” We use this expression when someone achieves something. We use it when someone gets that promotion, but we also use it when someone has released the fear of flying. But think about how often we use that expression. Oftentimes, when we say “more power to you,” we are giving away our own power to them. we are setting them up as “the king of the hill.” They come into a position that we, ourselves, may desire. After all, kings of the hill are only there for as long as the next guy topples them off the hill.
In yoga, we work to build our inner power. We work toward achieving poses that don’t come easily to us. We work toward finding inner peace by following our breath. We close our eyes to remember not to compare ourselves with the person next to us. So when we say, “more power to you” to our fellow yogis, we mean we recognize their personal power.
I think we have to be more careful when we say “more power to you.” I think we have to use it in a way that encourages inner power vs. worldly power. After all, worldy power is only fleeting, while inner power lasts a lifetime.