Again, Seeking the Self in India

We leave tomorrow for India.  Satchidananda and I are taking 30 people on pilgrimage to the Garhwal Hills in the Himalayas.  We have been planning a trip to check on the building of the ashram in Badrinath for two years.  We had hoped the ashram would be completed by fall of 2012.  But a building ban was put into effect for the whole village, almost immediately after we began construction about three years ago, as if some invisible forces were weighing many great considerations.  It has always seemed important and meaningful to be building here, and the delays have only made us more resolute.

People ask me, if I have ever had an experience with Babaji?  Does Babaji exist, really?  What I tell everyone is, if you really want the answer to that question, go to Badrinath.   Badrinath is for me one of the places Babaji abides.  His energy is always there and I think everyone feels it in one way or another.   Badrinath is more than a location in the Himalayas, where meditation comes easy; it is a place that resonates with devotion in the physical body, mind,  heart.  I cannot explain it better than that.  Badrinath itself is is like a deity,  a formation of Devotion.  Badrinarayan temple will grant devotion  to carry you along an advaita path, the way of unity. 
It is so easy to lose devotion, to lose focus, to forget the Self, while living in the West; easy to bcome distracted, even jaded and synical about that which nutures your soul.   Badrinath recharges you with powerful forces of devotion.   Devotion does not demand that you go through great trials and tribulations.  You do not need to make nothing into something or something into nothing.   It just happens when you meditate sincerely and with aspiration in Badrinath.  

 There is no where else like Badrinath, for me; no other Temple or town in India or elsewhere, which feels so familiar or significant.  ( Kyoto, Japan does follow as a close second).   But Badrinath is the place I can return to in my mind.    By simply think ing the name, Badrinath my mind leaps there.    My mind can dwell there easily in the forms and sounds and scents and taste and feel of the place.

 It is as if  my mind exists in  Badrinath and so I can enter this place at will.   I have carried it back with me.   It never leaves my mind so I can recall it when necessary.   It is not like a memory, it is like  experiencing it in the present moment… what I see, hear and smell,  the feel of the cold in my throat …everything so specific; it all comes to revisit me.   I am there.  

 Badrinath is  magnificient with it’s location in a valley surrounded by steep snow-tipped peaks and endless sky, but it is not an easy place to visit.   The trip up is usually troublesome and the temperatures hot by day, cold by night.   The food is limited in this high altitude and often smells of kerosene.  I eat little and rarely feel hungry.   Badrinath is known for its Tapt Kund, the hot springs, but it is so hot that I have never been able to slip all the way into it.  Ritualisitically I slide my legs in, they immediately turn lobster red; I throw water on my face and over my shoulders and slip out of the woman’s tank as fast as I can get my clothes back on.

The villagers of Mana a small nearby village (India’s northern-most village) impress me with their strength, sweetness, an ease in the face of harsh mountain living conditions  and their sense of humor.   These peoples of Indo Mongolian race live in the region from April to November and then relocate to Joshimath during the hard winter months.   The valleys around Badrinath and Mana, near the border to Tibet, as legend has it, is where the Pandavas of Mahabharata traveled to Heaven.   Legend or not, there is something magical about the region  and  just walking on the paths around there connect you to something celestial.    No one is immune to the effects of this region.

Devoted to the Mother of Wisdom

 

Heaven in its rapture dreams of perfect earth.  

Earth in its sorrow dreams of perfect heaven.   

They are kept from their oneness by enchanted fears.

Sri Aurobindo

 

Sri Aurobindo (1872-1950) was one of the greatest spiritual scientists of all times.  Although beginning in India, as a political revolutionary, he ended up one the world’s greatest spiritual revolutionaries. Aurobindo Ghose was no mere intellectual, philosopher or theoretician.  He wrote from pure experience of Truth, in the highest states of consciouness.  Aurobindo’search was for the key to a true life on earth.  “You can go on changing human institutions infinitely, he wrote, and yet the imperfections will break through all your institutions…” 

Aurobindo saw humanity as, at a crossroads in its evolution: “If a spiritual unfolding on earth is the hidden truth of our birth into matter, if it is fundamentally an evolution of consciousness that has been taking place in Nature, then man as he is cannot be the last term of that evolution; he is too imperfect an expression of the spirit, mind itself is too limited a form and instrumentation; mind is only a middle term of consciousness, the mental being can only be a transitional being. If, then, man is incapable of exceeding mentality, he must be surpassed and supermind and supermen must manifest and take the lead of the creation. But if his mind is capable of opening to what exceeds it, then there is no reason why man himself should not arrive at supermind or at least lend his mentality, life and body to an evolution of that greater term of the Spirit manifesting in Nature.”  – from, The Divine Life.

Sri Aurobindo realized that the limitations of the human mind along with its emotional and physical nature, were too great for man’s raw nature to naturally evolve and crystallize into pure, intelligence and compassion.  He knew that even though pure intelligence (overmind) was by its very structure the original source of man’s ordinary mind and nature,  it was so fragmented in its descent into the lower mental planes, that normally, it would not reveal itself. 

 Aurobindo wrote that the “true “Secret” of  transformation is that the consciousness above is the consciousness below, but this consciousness must enter into the last finite if it is to reach the infinite.”  To reveal heaven on earth is the truth of the spirit and heavens, a Power of Truth, which resists the downward, divisive power to which human nature is subject.  If man could live without all falsehood, he would live in Truth and wisdom.

Evolution of the human being would be possible, Aurobindo said, with the dissolution or transformation of individual egoism and the deep understanding and experience of the connectedness and interdependence between all beings. For physical and cellular consciousness to enlarge and universalize itself, mental silence, vital peace and cosmic consciousness are absolutes. One must come to the awareness that “the body is everywhere” and that complete transformation is not possible for the individual unless there is a minimum transformation by all.

The work required of mankind for the sake of evolution would proceed through three distinct phases. First stage is a bright phase of conscious collaboration in personal growth and evolution of spirit, through self-study, self-discovery, awareness and purification of one’s conditioning and a widening of the cooperative spirit.  A minimum transformation by the many.   The second phase would demand that Awareness,  Silence, an absolute living silence, overflowing with divinity descend into the physical being of those many individuals.  The third phase would encompass the whole of inner work for humanity and the world.

 The first and second phases are to this day being practiced by a limited number of individuals who have recognized their true essence, who understand the nature of the mind and in whom the nature of all things is not obscured.  There are many, but not enough to create critical mass.

 THE CRISIS OF TRANSFORMATION

If a call for transformation were made how would you as an individual respond?  If mass transformation was not possible, but you had the potential… what would you do?

At least you can ask the question.  Can human beings be conscious collaborators in their own evolution?  Can one move beyond the limitations of the human mind and self-centered vital and physical nature? 

Surely, as we observe the world it is rational to say that we are too imperfect an expression of a spirit; so attached are we to the physical body, the conditioning of the mind, to our beliefs and emotional makeup.

So ask yourself… Could you drop the heavy weight you are carrying to achieve true transformation in your mental emotional makeup and be free to be yourself?

And, if you say yes, then, contemplate the idea that if you could correct your mental/emotional makeup and be free to be yourself, are you holding onto any fear about what you would have to give up?      If your mind were capable of opening to what exceeds it, a higher intelligence, and you were able to live a life greater then what is available to you now, would you want it?   What do you have to lose? … stress, addictions, neurosis, anxiety, fear, hatred, greed, self-centered perspectives, judgments, opinions, aversions, preferences. 

The Minerva Institute www.minervainstitute.org is a new non-profit in Orlando Florida with the mission to cultivate inner peace and wisdom in the community, person to person.   Minerva (the Roman goddess of Wisdom) was founded to sustain a heart-centered, learning community that values self-discovery.   It will maintain an on-line and events centered learning community. 

Minerva will sponsor events to the community that truly offer accessible and deep, proven practices to strengthen and heal body and mind, open the heart, and gently push one into the realm of the Possible and Potential.

The message of  Minerva is  join with others in your community in a spirit of cooperation to establish your town as a Blue Zone, http://www.bluezones.com  , a place of peace and a place of learning for living long, happy lives.   

The success of such an endeavour will require the participation of a  large number of like-minded people who will be willing to step forward to support it in a variety of ways.  I am pleased to be a working board member of Minerva in Orlando and am dedicated to her vision.  

Transforming fear into love

It has been almost 6 months since I last blogged.  During the time away I have been engaged in my life with my family, attended to work, traveled to India on pilgrimage and taken care of my responsibilities.  I have tried to remain detached from opinions and politics.   My practice has focused on self-reflection: what I see in the mirror when I see myself.  Trying to maintain a certain quiet and observing mind, smiling heart and taming any excitement that arises in my nervous system.  I have avoided television news and political commentary and it has been extraordinarily strengthening.

Perhaps, even now it is best to just to stay quiet with faith that regardless of what appears to have happened,  what appears to be continuing unfolding, all of it is happening only that each of us may find the impetus to  evolve one by one  into a more humane, more compassionate, more loving humanbeing.

It seems, to effect change, the world must be made smaller and we must become more connected.  There is extraordinary power of the media, the internet and cataclysmic events to pull us out of our comfort zone, and draw us closer to the Self individually and towards all others collectively.

By watching all the unfolding events around the world, all the sacrifices made for the endgame, which always seems to be “change,” change happens.   Sacrifice is always necessary for any real change.  Civil disobedience, civil war, epidemics, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, environmental accidents, nuclear events, these all create immense energy in motion, immense energy utilized that result in the shifts and upheavals in the earth, its crust and with its inhabitants.

How much is the conditions on earth and its weather affected by the consciousness of its inhabitants?

The Siddhas tell us that the weather is due to the totality of human consciousness.

Could the crisis in Japan have been caused by the totality of human consciousness?

Satchidananda is presently in Tokyo.  He left yesterday for Japan to give a Mantra Initiation, just as fear around the nuclear meltdown began to rise and countries around the world were beginning to evaculate their citizens.  He arrived at Narita International Airport, as thousands crowded it seeking seats on any plane departing Tokyo.

The students in Japan who had registered for the Initation, months before this,  requested that he not cancel, that he come and support them particularly at this time when life was becoming very difficult.

It was not easy for me to take Satchidananda to the airport and see him off.  Listening to the moment to moment news coming out of Japan, only reinforced my sense of unease.

However, once the decision was considered and made and Satchidananda had boarded  the plane to Los Angeles, and took the flight to Tokyo, surrender settled into my being.  There is nothing that I could do but be surrendered and have faith that his going and giving the seminar too had purpose. …that students will be able to get the retreat safely, and the weekend of silence, pratyahara, meditation and emotional release, and mantra, will help to settle anxiety and grant strength and serenity.

I have been contemplating the saying that the weather is due to the totality of human consciousness.  And I observe the calm demeanor, graciousness, politenss of the Japanese culture and think that perhaps it is that country-wide calm wave of consciousness that will most support the cooling off of those volatile nuclear reactors.  I see with appreciation the spirit of survival and acceptance of death and destruction as nature expressing itself…sadness without anger, frustration without aggression, concern without panic.

And I too become calmed, my sadness dissolves into acceptance and love.  I have been almost overwhelmed by love and  have found my anxiety is gone.  I am assured that events will evolve in a way that is ultimately useful,  if I choose consistently to turn toward the best within myself, just as  the Japanese people seem to be consistently doing.  If every one of us would just bring order to our own mind while in the midst of chaos, could we not move a step closer to our self, collectively?

The Self which is Love is a spiritual state. The Self is never possessive. Love is never possessive.  Sometimes, in this world,  we must lose what we “love”most to learn that lesson.

We are constantly confronted with situations that offer us the possibility to increase our love for our family and friends.  Everyday we can use that opportunity to  to better practice the art of increasing our ability to love.

We must choose to increase our ability to love one another until we love totally, selflessly.   That is what we are seeking.. a state of selfless love, that widens us, connects us and lead us safely through life.

Everyday, we must just choose to express love so the Great Beings who work in the world, like Babaji can work more and more with us, even as things in the world get worse.

When the Lord answers

Someone commented on the last post and left us with a translation of the original Lord’s Prayer from the Aramaic.  It is quite beautiful; do check it out if you have not.   The last line, in particular touched me deeply.

From You comes the all-working will, the lively strength to act, the song that beautifies and renews itself from age to age.” 

Each morning I make a personal prayer to the Lord and Ma Shakti to help me  remain aware enough to do the right thing in the right way in any situation that might arise.    I ask that my Highest Consciousness to direct my will and  and  Shakti to strengthen my actions in a way that is both beautifying and renewing for myself and for those involved with me.

I began this prayer about 20 years ago, while studying  Sri Aurobindo.  Sri Aurobindo wrote in his Syntheis of Yoga, that  “Yoga is not a remote silent or high-uplifted ecstatic Beyond.   Life alone is the field of our Yoga.    The transformation of our superficial, narrow and fragmentary human way of thinking, seeing, feeling and being into a deep and wide spiritual consciousness and an integrated inner and outer existence of our ordinary human living into the divine way of life is our central purpose.”

 I learned the importance of every single “action” taken in life; that nothing could be taken for granted.   Every single thought, word, feeling, sensation, desire, aversion, all that is done or willed to be done must be observed and corrected as often as necessary to relinquish all conditioning.  Only then can a  spiritual revolution and evolution eliminate all conditioning and suffering and awaken us to the understanding that everything that happens is in reality only neutral.

Aurobindo and The Mother give us the greatest clues to how to live a spiritually evolving life.   They tell us that while there are many wrong actions in any given situation, there can  only be one action, which is the right one.  And we must at all times attempt to do that one right thing, in the right way, at the right moment.  

 But the question remained, “How do we know if what we are doing is right, and done in the right way…..

The answer for the kriya yogi can be revealed in a moment of reflection on a few obvious questions.

Who is initiating the action?   What is the impulse behind the action?     For what purpose is this being done?     Who is executing the action?     What is the spirit and manner of the action?          For who’s benefit is the action being done?

Normally, of course the answer to all these inquiries would be egoist, a variety of me and mine reasons.     And most likely the action was the wrong one for the right reason or the right one for the wrong reason or possibly, the wrong one for all the wrong reasons.

For the action to be the right one, the one correct action done at the right time, for the right reason, it is must have been your own divine shakti that was the inspiration and the guiding force, both initiating and activating the action, in Her own way for Her own reason

In this way we consciously plant good seeds for which a good affect will result.

Recently a Kriya Yogi living in India wrote to us, sharing an experience that demonstrates this ability to do the right thing,  so concretely, so vividly, so boldly, that I asked her if I could share it here.

The night before coming to Bangalore, I heard the most dreadful
noises from the neighbouring house: someone hammering and a woman
screaming for her life.   I jumped into my raincoat and ran
through the fields and mud to come to her rescue as I presumed
one of the men of the house of farmworkers had lost his marbles and
was beating up one of the women in the household.

As I neared the scene I saw a screaming woman, running away from the house,
seemingly non-injured, a man running after her.  I saw a second man
hammering away on a door as to break it open.  All at once, that guy turned and
came towards me with the hammer in his hand and a frightful expression
in his eyes.   As a I prepared for battle, he threw the hammer at the
ground and fell to the earth crying.   At that point,  the first guy returned with a
long ironrod, a ‘gadaparai’, which is used for digging holes
for planting.   The two men both worked together to pry open the door.
Once the door gave way, we rushed into the room to see the pitiable sight of a man hanging from the ceilingfan,  a noose around his neck made from his bedsheets.   The men held his body as I untied the sheet from around the man’s neck.   We placed his lifeless body on the bed and I asked them to go and call for an ambulance.   I took off my mala and placed the ‘dollar’ – a piece of the bark from the banayantree in Swami Nithyanandas Bidadi ashram on his third eye and a hand also on  his heartchakra.     
The room was now filled with wailing women and neighbours.    I sat for nearly 20 minutes chanting the Om Nama Shivaya mantra with a steady strength.    Most of the wailing women had left the room and with only 2 or 3 left,  I switched to chanting ‘Om Kriya Babaji Nama Aum’ and immediately a force, a strong current came from within my heart and coursed through my arms and hands entering the poor man’s heart and ajna chakras.    The entire room filled with such a beautiful, loving light energy – All sense of suffering disperse and the victims’ eyes started to move under his eyelids and some spitum, then a litle vomit, as he came back to consciousness.
After a few minutes the men returned and removed the man from the house.   An engineer who was helping me with a land deal had been fetched ( he was the only educated man around, currently in charge of building nearby).
 As they couldn’t arrange for an ambulance, this man, whose name is Annamalai, still in his underwear was propped up on a motorbike between the driver and another guy who held his body and they drove off on the terribly potholed road, in mud and rain, toward the hospital.
The following morning, just before I left to catch the bus for  Bangalore, the man’s sister sister, my gardener who takes care of all the plants when I am away, came to my house to tell me that her brother had miracolously survived the trip to the local hospital and later on had been transferred to a better facility in Pondicherry.  
 
Who knows whether Annamalai will live to be a 100 years or die soon and I suppose that is not very important. The fact that the Lord came to him in his darkest hour of need and showed him the Unconditional Love of a Father for his child is amazing.  Such a connection is the most important and sacred bond that can ever happen to any human being.

What a perfect example of the intervention of Divine Shakti!   While this kriyayogi felt strongly about the rightness of her action, she did not lose sight of the bigger picture… whereas each single action is due to a specific karma and will result in a specific karmic debt or merit, this higher  “response to an event” shows us how to deal with the rights of others and still do the “right thing” at the right time for the right reason.

This woman’s understanding that we are all an integral part of a whole, and all held together by the threads of our Divine Shakti opened herself wide to embrace a 360 degree perspective and made her strong enough to react, run and do what was right.   She did not do a single thing out of ego, but from inspiration, guidance and a higher will.   And in addition she surrendered the results of the action to the other treasured member’s truth.     She did not try to force a result, she allow the divine energy to flow through her,  offering it to this suffering man, giving his soul an opportunity of another chance.

So rarely do we have such an extraordinary example of ‘doing the right thing.’   Jeeva Jyoti has sowed another good seed by sharing her story with us.  And I am most grateful.

A virtual sangah

If you enjoy the blog, I invite you to comment, question, doubt, share your own experiences on the path and support a group energy.   Help me make this blog more interactive, and more relevant, a virtual sangah.

 During this past highly charged political month, I have often reflected on the important teaching that lasting change can be made only through collective commitment to increase awareness and clear up the mistakes of the past.  It makes me wonder what would have to change within our personalities and conditioning to make real change.  And how could that change come about?

 We can look back through history, throughout the world and see that a collective consciousness has immense force and power.  When a collective force is strong enough, its force and spirit can spread literally and figuratively out like the sea, molding itself to the many waves and surrounding some thing here, overflooding something thing there and finally swallowing up all with which it comes in contact.   Such is the force of shakti.

 We understand that one who is disciplined, who thinks the most, aspires the most and works the hardest receives more shakti (dynamism and force of attraction).   However, if one also fathoms deeply and learns the truth of the world he/she receives immense shakti (dynamic creative energy) and when Knowledge and Shakti come together they form a truly powerful force for Good.  True wisdom appears to be a cellular memory, a vibration of love, kindness, compassion that shows us how to connect and know our true self and that of others and turn all effort into an active reality. 

To make lasting change one must become an open conduit for shakti.   To be receptive to this energy one must become a worshipper of Shakti.    To be a worshipper of Shakti means first, acknowledging there is such a thing as Universal Energy and Knowledge, and then developing a foundation of Yoga and strong equanimity to establish the imperturbable force and wisdom in the body/mind complex and in all its movements.

To make positive change in the world permanent, we must all become devotees of this Shakti.   But, in addition, we must work to eliminate all pettiness, narrow-mindedness and jealousy.    Only by ridding ourself of egoism will we be able to understand this Energy as infinite luminious vastness, tranquil wisdom and infinite love and not merely think it is our own magnetic personality and personal power to use as we choose.

 This would have to be a non-sectarian devotional sadhana  – a  purification by fire to awaken Kundalini – an awakening that would break us wide-open and open a door to our creative imagination.   She might of course, open a door to other worlds, arising as visions, excitement and megalomania.  People would have to know that this is just theatrics and made aware instead of the tranquil, unhurried calm effort and progress she sets in motion. 

 Kundalini awakening could bring about a new world of authentic human beings.  It could help us all connect with the Supreme Truth within our own being, in whatever form, by whatever path that brings inner contentment.   Inner contentment is the only thing that  matures the soul and cultivates the truth so that we can live harmoniously in a world of challenges and conflict.

Kundalini awakening  allows us to see all parts of ourselves.  It is the femine part of ourself that lights up the dark places of our psyche.  It is through the feminine that our shadows become illuminated.  It is the feminine that allows us to see our human willfulness and cultivates a higher will for change and transformation.  If egoism does not get in the way and off track, the feminine within each of us could make lasting change.

Self-realization would promote lasting change – a means of biological, psychological, spiritual unification and harmonization.   It would create a combination of spiritual perception and realistic awareness of the world around us.  It could allow us all to have a free flowing existence as a part of Nature, step-by-step, moment-to-moment, liberated from preoccupation with result or consequence.  The vibration of shakti would simply repeat itself, irresistibly moving each of us sensitively and spontaneously to whatever arises in front of us.  It would be a different world where everyone worked individually mindfully aware, as part of the whole.

 The Mother of Aurobindo ashram speaks so beautifully of the phenomenon of living in a Universal soapbubble of Shakti.   She says that you eternally change within Her irresponsible gusts, with no sense of consequence.  None whatsoever.  She says if, “ disharmony and discord begins to lead to chaos, Kundalini Shakti slowly moves the sword of divine Vibration into the center of it, shattering the discord with the vibration of Order and Light.  The effect is rarely immediate, but the situation is affected positively, as the discord and disorder is dissolved, dispersed and changed effortlessly…like a continuous stream of light and order, a gentle penetrating influcence.” 

Communication with Shakti, she says, is done in crystalline luminous regions above the head, where communication is effortless and truth exists.   Knowledge descends into the mind, the brain is receptive to all from above; there are no walls. Intense light descends in a pouring or in flashes, like lightening.    Some is received easily, some is more passive.  All activity is above the head.

Can you imagine a time of  simplicity, when truth and knowledge from above guides and decides everything you do?   What is happening in your consciousness?  Your  consciousness determines the nature and quality of the life you live.   

Perhaps a multiplicity of approaches could eventually yield the secret to open the door for the whole world of beings to an impersonalized realization of Truth.   If each of us would develop a higher spiritual consciousness and use that in all activies of our life, then, when the moments of awareness all link up, we will simply realize that we are already there.

The YogaToolbox is available as an ebook

The Yoga Toolbox – An everyday guide for shaping your future offers lessons in simple tools to live a long, healthy and happy life.   It is written for everyone who wishes to use  Yoga  as a practice of aligning,  relaxing and centering the body and mind to release deep-seated tension. 

 Yoga has the potential to release old pains and relieve emotional suffering, which has been maintained in the body for  years.  

 Like the spokes of a moving wheel, Yoga connects your body, mind, breath to your source of balance – the every present Silent Center.   It is that centered presence, which affects transformation on  all levels of your being and guides you into a more perfect future.

The Yoga Toolbox – An everyday guide for shaping your future is dedicated to everyone willing to meet life’s challenge with awareness, acceptance and asana!

 Each of the fourteen different sessions you will learn to practice is designed to address a specific objective that will allow you to shape your future.  The objectives include:

  1. gaining access to unlimited power;
  2. purifying the five bodies or sheaths;
  3. developing concentration through controlled breathing;
  4. becoming flexible in life, starting with the spine;
  5. connecting to “the inner sun” for self healing;
  6. bending forward into stress and change;
  7. removing tension and blockages in the joints;
  8. developing a strong nervous system;
  9. learning to bend backwards, digest and let go;
  10. reversing depression or sadness;
  11. stand up, be centered and act dynamically;
  12. developing deep, restful sleep;
  13. overcoming negative conditioning;
  14. mastering the art of meditation;
  15. using the power of mudras (psycho-physical gestures) to change your life;
  16. using Yoga-Nidra (deep relaxation and yogic rest) for Self awareness and to re-program your future.

The Yoga Toolbox is available as  an ebook for download, for only $10.    278 pages, with over 200 black and white photographs.  Formatted for printing on 8.5 inch by 11 inch  paper. 

FOR A COMPLIMENTARY SAMPLE CHAPTER    Send your email and request to durga@babajiskriyayoga.net

To purchase and download the ebook visit

  http://www.babajiskriyayoga.net/english/bookstore.htm

The Value of a Yoga Sangha

The word sangha means association or assembly, company, or community with common goal, vision or purpose.   But moreover, sangha is a Holy space, a holy place where two rivers come together and merge into one.    The goal of any sangha is to gather people who want to be in company with Truth towards a common aim.   Sangha usually suggests the assembly of beings possess some degree of realization.   The Kriya Yoga Sangha is a community of laypeople who are spiritual seeking yoga practitioners with the common goal of self realization, or at least examining, Who am I?

After receiving initiation into Babaji’s Kriya Yoga, many students wonder what they should do or learn next.  Practice is the first thing, and then after that, practice, practice, practice.   When I first began yoga seriously intent on progress, I was told to expect a significant transformation in seven years.  I was thrilled at that possibility and made the commitment.   Today, many people tell me that they gave Kriya Yoga one month.  I asked them to make a commitment of at least 144 days.   But often,  after a month if no progress  is detected they give up, disappointed that the techniques did not work for them.

We should all understand going in to this,  that progress will be hindered by deeply seated habits of inertia and distraction.  Great effort is required to discipline the body and much more is needed to discipline the mind and emotions.    The human mind is generally very unsteady, and without consistent support and stimulation from others, is often fatigued.    The practices should be enough, you may say, but when left to your own devices interest in doing the practices is lost or enthusiasm for transformation itself fades.  All it takes if for the mind to become momentarily intrigued by something  else.   It is easier to blame the techniques or the teacher, or even to doubt yourself, than it is to keep up the practice.   The remedy to this dilemma is “satsang” or “sharing of truth” with dedicated fellow students in a Sangha.

Regardless of the spiritual techniques one practices, you will make no progress without a goal.   Knowing what you are aiming at, is critical to success.  Many people take Kriya Yoga Initiation without really knowing why they came to it in the first place.    Perhaps  intrigued by the Autobiography of a Yogi, or having succumbed to the romantic notion of Self- realization, they came but, without really considering just what the path might demand. 

Babaji tells us the aim of a Kriya Yogi is to ‘know the Self.’     He goes on to say, ‘to know your own self is to know the self of others and is almost an identical experience.  In our acquisition of the knowledge of the self, one comes to know the self of others and begin to relate to others as oneself.   Whether you want to know your own self or you want to know others, you have to start knowing both.   That is why a sangam is of infinite value to every spiritual seeker.   It can help to uplift you into your own inner being, and also to connect with that same Self, in others

Most of the time, we do not know what we truly want out of life because we have never looked into our self.    We are repeatedly swayed in what we want, by fleeting thoughts, fleeting emotions and fleeting desires.   It is the lack of self awareness,  even on a superficial level, which  negatively affects our work, our relationships our health, our life.

Babaji recommends group meditation for all adepts of His Kriya Yoga.    He tells us that “simple study of spiritual books among your selected friends and group meditations or common prayer in the end will go a great way to elevate the minds.”     The mind may resist with doubts like, why go to a meeting with a bunch of people just like me?    The answer lies in the unique chemistry that occurs when truth seekers meet one another.   The whole world will be grateful to you if you will focus together your energy in this direction

 Jesus Christ encouraged Satsang, when he said: “whenever two or more of you are gathered together in my name, there I am also.”   When he encouraged others to gather in His Name, he was referring to bringing together our Christ consciousness.  Christ Consciousness is Awareness of our Divine Source, and that Awareness is alive in each of us, even if we are not conscious of it.    This is the true purpose of a sangah, as it is conceived in India, to gather Awareness into a collective force.

The recognition of divinity within ourselves and within others, is not an intellectual experience; it is infinite Presence and what our hearts long for.  However, in an attempt to know the Lord, we often discard His living presence.   We expect that a sudden jump into intense sadhana will bring us face to face with him.   But, we neglect the utmost  principle of seeing the Lord at our very door.   We hopelessly discard Him in other forms, so our sadhana fails to give us the desired results.

The techniques and the teaching are given us to help us  strengthen and purify the body, mind and emotions.   When we focus on words of truth, as expressed in scriptures, sacred books, or inspirational literature, we can also transcend the habitual perspective of a lower sense-oriented, desire-oriented mind.    We become attuned to that higher Consciousness which spoke through the authors of such texts and perhaps even discover the power of grace, which flows from this All-pervading Presence.   When we really let ourselves chant the names of God the trivial round of ego-glued preoccupations can melt away into timeless inspiration.  We are empowered and Truth speaks through consciousness, which appears like a bridge between our mind and God.  When we do this in groups the energy is magnified and radiated out into the world.

Satsang manifests whenever you sit in the physical presence of a saint, but it can also manifest when you and others focus on your own highest truth.  How you focus on this truth, which is beyond definition and words, may vary: it may include meditation, chanting, inspirational readings, self-inquiry, questions and answers, devotional practices. What is required is only to let go of worldly distractions for a time, to allow your true self to shine forth in inspiration, joy and peace.  A sangha (of loving, like-minded people) can be a vehicle for opening your heart, but more importantly, it offers you a forum for sharing the doubts that arise with your experiences.

Knowing who we are and our purpose in life changes our perspective on everything.    Usually how we view the world is a reflection of how our family sees it, and from the opinons of our friends, community and the new channels we watch.  This imprinting from others is so powerful that we will accept the view and opinions of others, even when they judge us harshly or harass or bully us.   We choose to suffer from the opinions of others, rather than ignore them and reflect internally on the truth of our own being.    Know the Self; To Thine Own Self be True.  These must be taught early as the cornerstones of our human existence in this world.  

Why aren’t we taught early to look inside for the answers to life’s questions, to look inside for at the rising awareness; taught that meditation can changes our perspective on everything, including our own suffering.   Focused on the external world we remained caught up in judgments of good and bad, desire and aversion, I want this, I don’t want that, this isthis, so it cannot be that.   We remained locked in old habits and patterns, even when they only bring us suffering, pain, dispondency and angst.   Why are we not told, right out to drop the opinionated mind in order to  move inside and relax into our deepest truths.   Opinions, judgments are valued so highly by society.   It values the reasoning of the left-brain so much more than the truth and inspiration, which arises from the right hemisphere.  We tend to treat others and things dear, only as long as they serve a purpose, as long as they serve our interests, our needs.  It is only when our interests are at sake, that we are willing to consider sacrificing our beliefs.

The Lineage of the Kriya Yoga Sangam proclaims that everything – the physical cells of the body, the left and right hemisphere activities, emotions only exists for the sake of the One Self.   Your existence is to mold your individual evolution.  All your encounters in this existence have both a superficial and a deeper reason for being.  And your reactions to these encounters directly affect your physical, vital, intellectual, and mental bodies 

Kriya Yoga teaches —  learn from life,  see every single life situation and your reaction to it as a clue as to who you are and what in you needs to be transformed.   Life is karma and your karma is simply what happens around you as the events of our life.    Even though karma is a difficult concept to accept in times of evil or adversity, the scriptures tell us that your environment and life situation is according to your own creation.    So, take infinite care of your physical, nourish your mind and emotions and heart by entertaining noble thoughts and be happy and accept that you are creating your reality.  Take time daily to consciously Breathe in the Prana of Unity and to meditate to touch the ever-pure Atman.   Live well by letting go of  aversions and harboring no ill will toward anyone. Develop dispassion, discrimination and cultivate the virtues of truth in thought, word and action.  

Recognize that what is a difficulty, an error, a failure or an obstacle is simply there to help you to realize or correct something.  Be in harmony with the way your life actually is, to learn from it.     To be in harmony with your life allows you to realize its purpose, or dharma.   Dharma is your duty, according to the laws or rules of nature, action, life and your evolution.  Dharma is directed by the essence of your being. 

Karma is transformed into dharma when your life events are experienced with self-control and equanimity.   Dharmic are those actions that have no hold on you.  You calmly act and act calmly, with awareness of what you are doing.      Once you live according to your dharma, with spiritual consciousness, everything that happens to you takes on value, as a means of learning your lessons.  And you will  realize that come what may, you are supported by, and have been supported by an invisible ancient Yoga Sangam every step of the way.

Maturing the Soul

 I received a question today asking for some advice on journaling

This is my 70th post in this blog and since October 2009, I have journeled regularly and honestly about my life experiences, the obstacles and limitations, successes and failures and my consciousness along the road toward inner richness and maturity. I cannot say that I feel comfortable giving advice on journaling, but I highly recommend it.  It would be both interesting and spiritually useful for anyone to look back over the years of his or her life to see just what resulted from this or that experience.  It is amazing to see that ones life has all along contained a unique sadhana and the requirements and guidance to mature the soul.

I learned early that I preferred to write more from the bones, rather than from fantasy or intellect.  This blog is about about who I am and why I am here.  I have never tried to write poetically, nor have I taken the poetic licence of exaggeration.  I write in confidence, to myself or as an intimate letter written to a dear friend.

To be significant, journaling must reflect exactly what you observe or can recall in the moment, while remaining open and receptive to inspiration or insight.  Journaling always opens a channel of intuition. You must allow the quality of inner silence to permeate everything you write. 

I began these blog posts with my personal story of growing up spiritually, starting with my earliest most significant memory of approaching the spirit. That story begins on the first post October 9, 2009 and continues through December 2009.  I shared about my life and the people in it, and in doing so, realized the commitment to self-discovery that I had maintained for over 50 years.  I exposed my mental conditioning and emotional frailties but also talked about the light and shadows of others who traveled in and out of my life.   I revealed my process of self-discovery and my way of uncovering, through the presence of Mahavatar Babaji.   In the posts from mid October to November 13th , I began to share for the first time my pilgrimages  in India and to Santopanth Tal  and my experiences of Babaji.

 I shared my experiences and reflections at the Kumbamela in January – February 2010.  I spoke of the enlightened monks I have met and interesting teachers I have had over the years.  I have been granted many darshans and experienced such grace.  Writing about these things often overwhelming with gratitude.  Gratitude is an amazingly powerful force of transformation.

Each writing would unravel another memory or realization that I had never strayed from my path. I had  naturally, if unknowingly, been caring for and nourishing my soul since childhood.   At times a post would elicit some strong emotion from a reader too; their comments never failed to open another door to me.

I believe that the process of journaling can be a powerful spiritual tool, a means of transforming samskaras, traits, habituated impulses, over-reactioning and over-emotionality, as long as you allow your writing to expose you externally and internally.  You must be willing to see your life and yourself in the raw, so you must keep writing with a detached eye, dictating what comes up from your psyche uncensored. You must be aware to keep egoism out of the process so that you can accept the temporariness of all events and circumstances.  Then, regardless of the pain or pleasure a memory might elicit, you can see it for what it is, a projection of your mind.  All the memories are projections and most often a distortion of the truth created by the mind to produce what it wants to see in order to cause you suffering or happiness. 

So start where you are and write immediately from your experience and from your vison.  Try to drop the help of the mind.   Write from what you know to be true, without judging it as good or bad.  Write of the highs and the lows, successes and failures. You will enjoy expressing yourself fully. 

The practice of writing for me has been centering and expansive.  It has enabled me to re-unite with the presence that has been with me since I was a child and I  experienced a new wide-open presence that was willing to journal, freely.  I found myself becoming less an island unto myself, and more connected to others. 
You know, there is something that can happen along the path – a deep sorrow can set in, when you feel that after all the years of doing practices sincerely and meditating, faithfully, you still have not attained.   Journaling is a good practice to start then, because it pushes you to be more alert to what has changed over the years, what has shifted.  You recognize that the pain in your body or sorrow in your heart was not given to you to make you miserable and suffer; it was given to you to make you more aware.  Pain or sorrow is necessary I reckon and a potential stage for renewal.  Writing about the pain can often get you and your energy moving again. 

 Writing demands that the mind, which may have lost its desire to feel joy, becomes engaged and alert again… that alertness can lead you to discover that you have all you require and you need nothing more.   You discover your life, just as it is, is comfortable, just about perfect. And you are too.

A rare glimpse into the Guru principle

Kailash: In Quest of the Self, by Swami Vedanananda Saraswati, published by Babaji’s Kriya Yoga Publications

There is a law of being and action, a light of Truth, which guides the true seeker.  This guidance may be experienced as strong attraction to do something quite unexpected, a sudden clarity, or a new sense of willpower perceived in ones’ mind or heart.  

The soul, attracted by the Light of Truth puts a psychic impression on the intellect to close the door of desires to the world and open wide the heart in aspiration of that Light.  It is then that the being develops the consciousness of force or presence, which acts within to move and govern the actions of body, mind and spirit.  This presence and dynamic energy is an expression of the “guru principle.”

What develops in the personality is a manifold delight in being and in what you are doing.  Spiritual experiences become normal to your new nature.  All essential experiences of the body,  mind and life become spiritualized so that everything is transformed in your consciousness.  An impersonal  goodness and beauty is expressed through your actions.  All, everything seen becomes illumined by the great Shakti, which embraces all that happens and grants a wider perspective and insight into the very nature of things and others. 

 Working with Swami Vedananda over the past year, I can guarantee the reader, a rare glimpse into a personal spiritual transformation of just this sort in the new book, Kailash, In Quest of the Self.

This is the spiritual adventure story of a dedicated renunciant’s step-by-step pilgrimage to Tibet’s Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar, the abode of the gods on earth.  Swami Vedananda, a direct disciple of Shirdi Sai Baba literally takes us with him on his journey.  He gives us an amazingly frank and honest portrayal of the physical and spiritual challenges, which plagued him on this very difficult yatra.  He shares his personal encounters with great ascetics, saints and gods who prodded him on.

Paramahamsa Vedananda records for us, in detail, the remarkable meetings and teachings he received from several siddhas, and in particular a 700 year-old Siddha.   Swamiji grants us access to his profound meditations.   Numerous photographs show us the way.  This is a book full of blessings.

ISBN 978-1-895383-66-9     228 pages       58 photographs

 For Purchase see-   http://www.babajiskriyayoga.net/english/bookstore.htm 

15.95 USD       17.95 CAD     12.50 EUROS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Yoga Toolbox for Shaping Your Future

 

 I am pleased to have completed a new, and I think, inspiring and empowering Yoga ebook with Hatha Yoga sets that  build upon one another and are attentive to the unique needs and capacities of individuals.

A Yoga Toolbox for Shaping Your Future, offers training in the simple tools to live a long, healthy and happy life.  It is written both for those who are new to Yoga and for those who feel uninspired in their practices.  It was not written specifically for those who practice Babajis Kriya Yoga.  It is dedicated to anyone who is willing to try Yoga to heal what ails their body, mind, heart or spirit.  

A dedicated, daily Yoga practice can be difficult to establish due to resistances in both the body and the mind. Therefore, these trainings are short and wholistic.  They provide both physical and mystical ways of relaxing, harmonizing and healing the physical body, mind and emotions.  They teach how to be receptive to the joy of moving in postures and to the tactile awareness of the shimmering, energy body.  As dynamic energy, enthusiasm and awareness increases, one learns how to apply these in their work, relationships and in shaping their future.

A daily routine of Hatha Yoga and meditation will support stability, restore balance and promote relief from the symptoms of a stressful life: out of shape body, poor posture, chronic pain, over-taxed mind and over-extended emotions. 

Yoga can be used effectively as a program of self-discovery and self-healing.  Postures, coordinated with the breath and consciousness, slowly align and balance the body and encourage one to uncover, feel and then release deep-seated tension and trauma.  In doing so, one’s practice can ease pain and emotional suffering, even that, which has been held in the body for years or decades.

 Yoga acts like the spokes of a moving wheel, which connect the wheel to its hub.  It grounds and balances the movement of your body, breath and mind in your ever calm and present Silent Center.  Such a centered presence will affect transformation on all levels of one’s being.  The practices will release tension, restlessness and inertia from body and mind and bring about alignment.

Alignment in the body and mind will  bring about deep relaxation, and the ability to meditate.   One begins to experience a unified flow of energy that can open new channels of inspiration, intuition and insight.   Even off the mat and cushion, this energetic flow will be palpable in the body and perceived through the eyes.

 There are fourteen different daily sets of Yoga practices. Each set has a detailed description and photos (241). Included within the sets are postures (asana), breathing techniques (pranayama), muscular locks (bandhas), physical gestures (mudras), techniques of meditation and training in awareness. 

 Chapter titles are:  Tapping into the Power of Prana; Tapping into the Power of the Mind Through the Breath; Beginning Basic Yoga Postures; Surya Yoga and Aum: Tapping Universal Forces; Breaking through Resistances; Loosening the Lower Body and Spine; Loosening and Relaxing the Upper Body and Spine; Strengthening the Nervous System; Bending Over Backwards; Dealing with Despondency; Standing Asana for Balance and Dynamism; Rejuvenating Sleep; Breakthrough Conditioning; The Art of Meditation: Preparing the Body and Mind; The Power of Mudra; Yogic Relaxations to Enrich Life and Actualize Aspirations.

 

Let me know if you want more information about ordering the ebook, A Yoga Toolbox for Shaping Your Future.   It should be available soon at www.babajiskriyayoga.net  

Staying the Path

The past couple of weeks have been particularly difficult and various challenges have tested my awareness and inner equilibrium and disheartened my ego.  All of the discomfort I experienced was due to either impulsiveness on my part, or my investment in the status quo.  I can now appreciate the transformational power of this time.

 For steady internal growth we need strict rules and self-discipline because our normal human nature is careless. We need tools to protect the fragility of growth, to keep the mind from freaking-out and to learn how to return to the center in a relaxed and and natural way. Sometimes we can get so drawn into the big screen of our life that we forget to tend to the tenderness of the soul.  Yogic sadhana helps us to remember to remain steadily on course and adjust to change without compromising integrity.

Challenges arrive so that we are forced to transform or restore this or that, which is deteriorating, and this is good.  But any correction of mistakes should be made from the space of the tender soul not from the ego.  Teachings come in many forms, and some are not ones we would choose.  Some of our best teachings come from something being forced upon us. It is said that something harmful may happen to a good person but in that event, an important benefit can occur.  This is one of the paradoxes of life.

We all seek the benefits of inner peace and contentment.  In that search it not uncommon for people to align with a particular school of Yoga/ meditation and then quit, to try another.   Anyone who stays the path of Babajis Kriya Yoga adds something, figures out something about how to remain firm not only in their practice but also by working on themself.  There is no way to walk away from the path because their life becomes their path.  The only concern is not to get stuck, or to lose awareness of that fact.

A path walked sincerely connects us to our own Inner Guru and to Universal energy. And then, we are supported in so many directions.  Spiritual tradition is founded on the belief that once we gain firm support from within, external support follows.  It is that internal foundation that we must gain.  We must establish a firm ground.   A specific spiritual dharma like Babajis Kriya Yoga is a means of bulding firm grounding and unshakeable faith. 

Firm ground is not necessarily demonstrated by how many hours one does specific practices, nor is it a reflection of the personal relationship one has developed with a Guru in the physical form.  It requires never leaving the path, come what may.  One may still try this or that new technique, and stays the path.  Firm ground is expressed in one’s ability to self observe, serve others selflessly and remain faithful to the Way demonstrated by those who have gone before us, whom we respect.

So choose a path and stay it, do practices without judging them and drop any idea of good, bad, better, best, loss or gain? 

 Any judgment concepted by the thinking mind tends to be very superficial and is usually just some form of mental mischief.  Understanding is different; it is absorbed in the bones, the blood and marrow and happens when one is ripe.  Ripening occurs in the Witnessing Mind, the mind not accessible by thinking.  This mind will never be known through ordinary efforts.  It is only through one’s extraordinary aspiration for the Divine or his/her sincere, intense practice of meditation over time, which takes one into this soft, space of Pure Intelligence. 

Select a path that feels right, and then begin the training in earnest without looking back or around – not judging, or comparing.  Nothing will lead you into a quagmire of stagnation quicker than judgment and doubt.  It is by remaining open to the path that one finds oneself being lead in their sadhana.  The right teacher or experience comes at the correct time, in the perfect form, for a particular lesson.  Sometimes a person will be guided to develop a cool detachment by retreating from activity and involvement in the busy mind or to practice intense sadhana.  Once in a while, any one of us may be called upon to serve as a mediator between the fortunate and the less fortunate, to facilitate an increase that benefits others.  If we can do this without motive, the soul is nurtured. Nurturing the soul increases its influence and we can discover our self  in others. 
We are all traveling the same road; only the events along that way are different for each of us.  There are obstacles inherent in the process; there may be accidents, detours or a roadside bomb that stops us in our tracks for a while. A few will race ahead, jumping over some of the steps along the way.  Some will pace themselves steadily; others stroll, fuflfilling desires on the road but not getting very far, while others shuffle down the road just stirring up dust and kicking rocks.  The key for every journeyer is to learn from each thing that comes up to meet us and continue to move on cautiously, forward.

The pressure from the stress and complexities of life offers us flavor, challenges and opportunities, and the possibility of transformation.   Often our best teachings are those that are forced on us in life.  Rare is the one, who can sit down on a meditation cushion, transfixed on a point in the physical body and drop into Pure Awareness or have God reveal Himself/Herself.   Pure Awareness and God are often  more accessible to people with their eyes wide open, in the midst of an emergency.

Over these past two weeks, I have been shown again and again just how deeply connected we all are to everyone else.  I have been amazed by God’s Grace.  We are connected to those with whom we have much in common but also to those with whom we think we have nothing in common – with those who have divergent political, religious and societal views – with those we like and admire and with those we do not.  We are all intimately connected.  And all we have to do, come what may is to maintain that awareness and reflect on it and trust and surrender moment-to-moment to the flow of life force – trusting the life flow will move us onward, in the best possible way.

Maintaining Harmonious Senses and Experiences

Over the past few months, I have received emails from about a dozen people who feel their yogic practices have opened a door to anxiety, fear, anger, lucid nightmares or depression.    They want to know that they should continue their practices and want confirmation that their experiences are signs of  “spiritual,” openings rather than mental/psychic/pranic imbalances.  Unfortunately such things are not cut and dry.  They can be both

Yoga is difficult for everyone, because it starts a process of purification.   Any purification will bring up toxins within the body or mind.  Even if one could be assured that these experiences were due to kundalini awakening and rising, spiritual experiences would still be a mix of both pleasant and disconcerting.   Some periods will be quite bright and inspiring, while others quite melancholy and discouraging.  Experiences will reflect a rising of consciousness into the light and slipping into the darkness of the soul.  When we seek to know the self, we open to all our parts.  We are complex and contain both light and dark.  We have to accept and move on and not stop to tarry along the way in imagination, fantasy or stagnation.

You are on the path to your self.   Thoughts are mental formations coming up from your conscious,  subconscious or  from  the unconscious or  superconscious.  You have to know yourself and be honest and courageous and encourage your mind to  uncover the source of your thoughts, tendencies and conditioning. 

The first thing, drop any resistance and anger or judgment regarding thoughts.  Reject the notion that they are tricksters, malevolent, or intrusive.   Accept the thoughts for what they are, as a strange retinue of acquaintainces that have come to visit.  Perhaps , even friends from the past that are leading you into areas that you had forgotten existed.  Thank them and let them leave.

I find that if I am caught-up by a particularly strong or unpleasant thought, that just by coming back into my senses, into felt sensation within my physical body, I regain my presence.  By focusing on the sensation of the thought, in my physical body, I can release the thought and often discover the source of it.  
Thoughts, even anxiety, sadness or fear does not coexist well with sensation.  When you turn your mind to the sensation instead of the thought, the thought often dissolves, even if only temporarily.  If a thought is quite dense, due to years of conditioning, and established in your psyche, it will not dissolve just by observing the physical sensation of it.    You have to consciously call on the sanity of coming to your senses,  and chose to remain calm in the face of anything that should rise to disturb you.

 Spiritual growth is demonstrated when, regardless of what is occurring in your life or moving through the space of your mind, you can maintain a steady heartbeat and calm heart —  the least disturbance to the body.   Spritual attainment is  experienced as  a concentrated static benevolent power, which maintains steady unshakability and restores strength, patience and faith.    This is what you seek when you do your Yoga practices!

Yoga  Siddhanta says that the soul experiences through pure subject consciousness.   Its experience is sensory, associated with the body, world and matter, creating attachments that perpetuate the karmic cycle.  When through our practices, kundalini is full awakened, the soul is in charged, guiding the senses, and it derives experiences based on self-control and self-will.  The soul, its experiences and the senses are in harmony.    This is what we seek.

When the soul is in full control, one is freed from all attachments.   Freedom of attachments brings about purity of mind, body, environment and is extremely important as kundalini begins to awaken.  Yogic practices that emphasize virtue and simplicity are critical to growth.   The guiding voice I have heard along the way has kept me from fear, anxiety or self importance has emphasized Simplicity… Beauty….Be simple, Be kind.   Each word arrives on  a physical sensation — knowledge with a tactile experience of the quality.  With each awareness,  impurities can be identified  along with the grace and energy to eliminate them. 

Impurities are not all immediately eliminated by grace, but through grace, the choice becomes ours to rid our self of them.   We must pray for grace.  Without grace we are most likely to fail.  Our energy can become quite eratic or choked and buildup so that  our shortcomings and impuritie get stronger.   The flow of great dynamic energy is often followed by a deludge of thoughts and feelings: self-importance and narcissm, self-rightousness, sadness, fear or depression.  Tapas and caution is required. We must continue the Kriya practices of asana, pranayama, mantra, meditation to purifying body, nadis, mind and the intellect and demand continue self-study and a commitment to devotional practices of seeing the Lord in all.

 Selfless service can be quite useful at these times, especially, physical work.  Do work that you specifically, do not find easy or enjoyable, i.e. some cleaning job or organizing your house or belongings.  To continue to do only what is pleasureable or  avoid what is difficult or unpleasant  creates or maintains contraction in the body.   Any contraction will stop, hinder or imbalance the free flow of energy.    Our energy should be free to move effortlessly.  Use  energy constructively and continue all work until the prana is harmonized with the mind and work is no longer difficult or the job is completed. 

 Difficulty is a reflection of your nature and pranic flow.   Change your nature, smile, cheer up, be peaceful and unflappable and move your body and difficulties disappear.  Do not sit too much.  Align and relax the body.  Move, walk, dance!  The energies that are choked will be released and allowed to rise up the central channel. 

Remember that contraction occur in the body and block, or choked-off energy, whenver we wallow in emotion or suffer due to the conditioning of our desires, fantasies, aversions or inertia.  Any increase in energy will cause increase in whatever we choose to experience.   Be careful what you set your mind on.

 Set your mind on Love, as God. Love is God is a great knowledge, a mahavayka … the power of love of the human being contains the divine spark. Karuna, compassion too is another name for Love.

 If you set your mind on Love and compassion, mental purity and cheerfulness will protect you from depression, anxiety and fear on the spiritual path.  Universal Love and compassion requires you to develop discernment, discrimination and detachment.  If the witnessing mind is clear about the importance of discrimination and discernment, the mind will become fiercely protective of its peace and Love with permeate and heal body and heart.

Set your mind on the channel of Love ( in anyway you can) and mental purity and cheerfulness will protect you from depression, anxiety and fear on the spiritual path.  Imagine that Love is being breathed directly into your mind and heart with every breath  … that the reason behind everything is to develop love.  And that you must develop discernment, discrimination and detachment.   When you have attained  discrimination and discernment,  the mind and witnessing consciousness harmonzes and becomes fiercely protective of the  peace and Love that heals and brings order to the whole being, the whole world.

Sri Aurobindo tells us… “As the soul, the psychic entity takes up its greater functon as the guiden and ruler of the nature, a guidance, a governance begins from within, which exposes every moment to the truth, repels what is false, obscure, opposed to the divine realization: every region of the being, every nook and corner of it, every moment, formation, direction, inclination of thought, will, emotion, sensation, action, reaction, motive, disposition, propensity, desire, habit of the consciousness or subconscious, physical even the most concealed, camouflaged, mute, recondite is lighted up with the unerring psychic light, their confusions dissipated, their tangles disentangled, their obscurities, deceptions, self-deceptions precisely iindicated and removed; all is purified, set right, the whole nature harmonized, modulated in the psychic key, put into spiritual order.  This process may be rapid or tardy according to the amount of obscurity and resistance still left in the nature, but it goes on unfalteringly so long as it is not complete.”

 Babajis Love is grace-light shining from the highest form of Love, and pure and free of all blemishes.  His only concern is for the soul – for the soul to learn and redeem itself, experience the supreme love of God and become one with it.   Babaji’s Grace grants us the power to love unconditionally…this mellows the soul so that it shines within and without.