Do you need to be strong to surrender or do you need to surrender to become strong?

Is surrendering a sign of weakness or strength? It depends on the situation and the intention or lack of intention. I believe strength and surrender go hand in hand.

Look at the bamboo tree. It is tall and strong enough to be used as a building material. Yet it bends to the wind, yielding while staying strong and grounded. This enables it to survive.

Surrender does not necessarily mean defeat or weakness. It means giving in but not giving up. If we surrender our hopes and dreams, we are lost. But if we surrender to the inevitable changes of life and to the acceptance that we cannot control everything, then surrender is very sweet. It can nourish us and keep us whole.

A mighty river follows twists and turns as it makes its way from the mountains to the sea. The ability to flow around objects gives a river its character as it flows to its ultimate destination. Nature teaches us over and over that surrendering is part of life and new growth as we pass through its seasons and cycles.

Love is a form of surrender. When we love someone we are willing to compromise for the sake of the relationship. Letting go of our ego creates freedom. Our ego can bind us to unhappiness in the guise of being strong enough not to surrender.

Look at the big picture to determine your course of action. We can’t always get what we want. Life can throw us curve balls and if we are not willing to adjust and adapt, we will be stuck and cease to grow. Our paths in life often take unexpected twists and turns. Being flexible enough to change our perspective and direction as needed is key to any worthwhile endeavor.

“Better indeed is knowledge than mechanical practice. Better than knowledge is meditation. But better still is surrender of attachment to results, because there follows immediate peace.“
Bhagavad Gita.

Yoga teaches us how to balance strength with surrender. Relaxing and letting go completes the pose just as it make our lives sustainable. Our breath reminds us that letting go is part of being whole. Every exhalation is surrendering our life force energy. It is also letting go of toxic carbon dioxide and making space for new breath with life-giving oxygen.

Savasana, also known as corpse pose, may be the easiest pose for some people and the hardest for others. Can you stop the busyness of your mind? Do you resist surrendering? Allowing yourself to surrender deeply in savasana is regenerative and nourishing for your body and mind.

When viewed as defeat and failure, surrender leads to angst. But when surrender is viewed as non-attachment to an outcome, it leads to contentment.  Eventually every one of us will die. Death is the ultimate surrender. Will your last breath be filled with fear and anxiety or will you surrender peacefully? The choice is yours.