Austin is here for you this week with some insight on what it really takes to create abundance in your life and how it reflects your ability to fulfill your life's purpose. This might be particularly poignant during this time of national social distancing where we have all experienced a loss of some sort. If this sticks out to you, you might consider joining Amber Richman & Erika de la Cuadra for their Align with Abundance Workshop and 40 Day Mantra Challenge starting next week, 4/28.
Do you have insights that you would like to share on the Yoga Living Project? We are always looking to feature content about your experiences with all things life, love, learning and yoga. Email Austin at
Creating Abundance & Aligning with Dharma by Austin Richman
When one is in an adharmic state they cannot be in a Lakshmi state and, conversely, when one is in an Alakshmi (the opposite of Laksmi) state they cannot be in a dharmic state.
I have recently been studying Lakshmi, the mother of abundance, wealth and fortune, and Abundace. Bringing abundance into one's life is not quite as simple and perhaps reductive as is promised in certain modern metaphysical circles alluding to the techniques made famous by the book Law of Attraction and the movie The Secret where all one must do is obsess over manifesting the desire into their life and, if done with enough fervor, it will arrive out of thin air. This is an incorrect approach to invoking Lakshmi energy where one must focus on that which is already present and working within one’s life to magnetize the external desire or engulf it completely by way of supercharging the things that are already in line with Lakshmi happening in one’s life.
Let's take a look at the four aims of life are dharma, artha, kama, and moksha, which are found in the Vedas as well as other texts in other orders but for the purposes of this peice, I will define them in reverse order as I find them easier to digest that way:
- Moksha, like mukti, denotes liberation, specifically from suffering. Moksha is the ultimate goal for all soteriological schools of philosophy and religion.
- Kama is worldly pleasure including but not limited to physical pleasure, this one is a unique facet of this particular type of Hinduism as many other sects renounce this very thing favoring ascetic practices often referred to as tapasyas.
- Artha is resource, it is the means by which one's kama, moksha and dharma may be fulfilled. It would seem that most people who have only a peripheral understanding of Lakshmi would most relate this concept to her means of fortune and abundance. In my mind, artha is the linchpin that provides access for the other interrelated aims of life to come to fruition but it is dharma that is the foundation and guiding force behind all of its efficacy.
- Dharma is also the toughest one to define categorically and may be best respected by taking in all of the different types of definitions ascribed to it as to not be reductive with it. Dharma for the intents and purposes of this paper can be strictly defined as duty or purpose.
Dharma is the crossroads where the frontier of the universal influences our lives and our personal decisions based on our perspective interface. It is in this conversation where it is critical that we as spiritual seekers remain present, aware, flexible and open to surrender at any given time to serve the full calling of what our own and cosmic dharma may demand of us. When we are living out of harmony with our dharma, this is known as being adharmic whether in thought, word or deed. So it is my belief that this concept is inextricably linked to the idea of being in a Lakshmi or Alakshmi state. If one is not fulfilling their spiritual destiny they can not be living in the favorable stream of abundance that Lakshmi grants. Lakshmi requires gratitude and in my opinion that requires insight and awareness which are two ingredients that are active when one is in tune with their dharma. The inverse is true as well, if one is in an Alakshmi mindstate, one of giving way to scarcity and fear, I believe that it follows that they would not be able to be in full bloom of their dharma.
Dharma requires trust and surrender, two virtues not present in fear and scarcity mindsets.