Teacher or student?

Recipe: Orange, Avocado and Pomegranate Salsa

When I was hanging with the fam over the holidays, I did my early morning practice with my siblings. I would ask my brother, who is studying to be a yoga instructor, to lead the Sadhana. And then I would proceed to tell him what set he should teach, pre-empt each exercise, decide on the music for the meditation, and just generally be a pain in the butt! Finally he said to me “Are you sure you want me to lead, because you seem to have a hard time letting me be the teacher!”

Who, ME!? Not able to let go?? Haha, yes, he absolutely called it. And it got me thinking. Sometimes we really do need to submit to being a student and the lessons being taught to us, be it in an actual classroom setting, or in life in general. This means knowing when to shut up, listen, and take direction. If we always think we know it all, we miss the beauty of being a student and the grace of allowing ourselves to be guided. It is a process of surrender whereby we can trust that we are looked after and all we have to do is enjoy the ride.

People are always entering into our lives to teach us things, and not always in a literal classroom setting. The next time you feel YOU are in the right and experience resistance to a situation, take a step back and allow yourself to become the student. Observe what is being taught to you and what you can learn about yourself. Balancing our fifth, or throat, chakra, is about knowing when to express ourselves (embracing the teacher within), but also about refining the art of listening and receptivity (embracing the student within).

We are all teachers, and sometimes the most important lessons we deliver are those that don’t come with lesson plans. Thanks RD!

Here is a recipe for a very seasonal, wintery salsa. It made a fine accompaniment to the New Years Eve menu. I stumbled upon it amongst Oprah’s cache of online recipes, and the medley of pomegranate, orange and avocado immediately got my attention. It’s perfectly vegan and makes a delightful side dish, or a salad when served over mixed baby greens. Of course I tweaked it a bit, but the original recipe can be found here.

Orange, Avocado and Pomegranate Salsa

Servings: Makes about 4 cups

1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice (from 1 lime)
1 tsp. kosher or sea salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 oranges (I used a mix of naval and mandarin)
1 pomegranate, seeded
1 large Hass avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2/3 cup diced red onion
2 green onions , including green tops, cut on the diagonal into thin slices
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Combine together in a bowl. Let sit for 30 minutes before serving.

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