What’s your first reaction to seeing or feeling a fly?
I see it all the time, and I used to react the same way. After practicing yoga out in the woods for a few months I learned to transform my relationship with the flies from one of disgust and annoyance to love, gratitude, and expansion.
The sensation of a fly walking across your lip is quite intense… the excruciating tickle of it’s tiny legs may make you want to flail and swat the space around you like a mad person, but there is gift in those beady eyes… the gift of presence, non-reaction, and transformation.
If you can’t help but murder any creature that tickles your cheek, how can you expect to have the self control and nonreactive presence required to deal with any other truly shocking or painful situation?
So how do we transform this relationship? And why should we? “Flies are disgusting creatures of death and shit,” you may think to yourself.
I find it fascinating that our first reaction to a creature of the dark is to swat in disgust. What if we instead took this ominous presence as a reminder or warning of death, decay, or impurity. Are there any stanky stories, influences, or sources of pain hanging around in your life? Take the presence of the fly as a signal to wake up, be present, find the the shit that is attracting the fly, and remove it. Ask yourself if there is anything in your life that needs to fall away, and invite the fly to kindly remove it as it walks across your skin. Watch your shit fly away with this creature of the dark and thank it for doing so much of the dirty work for us.
There is nothing to fear from the fly and nothing to judge. The fly isn’t dirty, it is here to help you transform. Take this moment and interaction as an opportunity to practice. Ask the fly to be your ally in the development of non-reaction, self-inquiry, and compassion for all beings. As it flies off into the distance, watch your cares and worries zipping off along with it.
As we re-define the way we perceive and interact with the fly, we open a door of potential through which we can begin to transform all of our relationships. Every creature, every human enters our experience for a reason; each one has a unique story and lesson to share and will land on your open palm as soon as you are ready for it.