What makes your practice sacred?

What makes your practice sacred?  You get to choose how sacred your practice is to you.  It's up to you.  Sacred ritual is one of the ways that we can define when something is special to us.  We inject our energy into these sacred rituals and into our practice.  What you are training yourself to do is to also inject your energy into your life.  It's up to you to make your practice special and to give it meaning.  It's up to you to make your life special and give it meaning.  

My teacher Dharma always says, "Take responsibility for your own practice." I think we could add to this, "Take responsibility for your own life."

I think too many students are looking to get something from their: class, teacher, friends, relationship, life...etc.  Fill in whatever you want there.  Are you approaching things with the, "what's in it for me attitude?"  Your practice and your life really change when you stop approaching them selfishly.  Me, me, me!  What's in it for me!?  What if you shift your perspective and see how much you can bring to the table?  How much energy can you put into your practice and into your life?  How special can you make the time on your mat or sitting in meditation?  How special can you make each day that you are living?  Are you just trying to fit your practice in? How many things in your life are you just trying to fit in?  Are you just trying to get through the day? Or are you breathing into the moments, breathing into your life? I don't want to just fit something into my life or do it as quickly as I can to get it over with.  I don't want to just get through the day.  One of my teachers used to say, "Are you living? Or are you just existing?" What's next? What's next? What's next?  The mind keeps asking.  One day you realize what's next is the end of your life and you weren't really present.  Shift your perspective.  Look at what you are bringing to your practice and to your life.  Make changes on your mat and they will start to change you off your mat.  If you just treat your practice the same as everything else in your life, you'll bring the same patterns you are trying to undo into your practice.  Make it special.  Make it different.  Give it meaning.  It's up to you. What kind of time and effort are you putting in? What sacrifices are you making?  How are you being of service?  What you put into something is what you will get out of it.  Choose to make your practice more meaningful.  Choose to make your life more meaningful.  It's a choice.  Take responsibility for your own practice. Take responsibility for your own life.

What makes your practice sacred?  Do you have any sacred rituals you use to make it special? Does your teacher guide you through any rituals?