Swamiji began with a prayer: “Heavenly Father, Mother, Friend, Beloved God, Bhagawan Krishna, Jesus Christ, Mahavatar Babaji, Lahiri Mahasaya, Swami Sri Yukteswar , beloved Gurudev Paramahansa Yogananda , saints of all religions, we humbly bow to you all. Bless my spiritual efforts that I may find your peace, your joy, your divine love become part of my life. Bless my spiritual efforts that I learn to set aside all worldly ambitions and place you my Divine beloved as my one ambition, to know you and follow you….Aum Shanti Shanti Shanti.
Br. Soujanyananda from SRF sang the soul -stirring chant -Hare Rama Hare Krishna.
Swamiji introduced himself: Good-morning, I’m Swami Vishwananda from Guruji’s SRF Headquarters – USA, along with Br. Soujanyananda . We’re here for this satsanga, thereafter we proceed to Ranchi ashram. It is always a joy to sit by the holy Ganges, close to nature and away from the city. Swami Suddhananda and others take such good care of the ashram.
You may be expecting me to say something profound, to give you some magic kernel of truth that will instantaneously change your life, but I’m going to talk about mobiles! Anyone without a mobile? Can I live without my mobile? No! When I was in India in the 70’s and 80’s, to talk to Daya Mata, I had to contact the operator. I waited…sometimes for hours; finally, when I got connected, there so much static, you had to shout…and just as you started communicating, the line got cut. So –welcome, the mobile! By just a touch, almost instantaneously you can contact anyone.
Just in a few decades, there has been a great advancement in technology in all fields- Electronics, Engineering, Space etc. Why this sudden change? Is it because of the application and use of subtle energy? I hope most of you have read The Holy Science by Sri Yukteswar Giri. Mankind has moved from Kali Yuga to Dwapara Yuga. The manifestation of evolving consciousness that comes from God helps in every field- medicine, space, transport etc. It is just the beginning of this subtle energy. Is the world any better as a result of this subtle energy? In the world, we find rampant crime, increase in divorce rate (even in India).
Why this imbalance in the use of this subtle energy? We have the answer as we have been drawn to a line of true Gurus. In this ascending Dwapara Yuga, the evolution of souls must focus on the body, mind and the soul. The focal points of Guruji’s teachings are developing the divine potential and balance in our lives. If we look objectively, all progress is external - no focus on internal discovery. There is this expression of subtle energy; where is it coming from? It comes from our own understanding within. Guruji brought to us, the science of Kriya Yoga: its subtle energy brings peace, joy, understanding, patience and wisdom. The vibrations that emanate from the Aum vibration enter through the medulla. There is a growing awareness of the subtle energy within the spine. Kriya Yoga, magnetizes the spine, we learn to withdraw energy up into the higher centers called chakras; the subtle energy of joy and peace manifest ultimately our true nature. Without this balance we find increase in crime, drugs, divorce etc.
Just as we have to tune in to the correct channel (of a radio) to hear music, so also God is always waiting to guide us, but we are unable to hear Him because our fine tune is always full of static. How can we tune in to God? By meditation. How many of you have had a peaceful morning meditation, after which someone confronts you? This energy is not so subtle. The vibrations of anger, fear, misunderstanding, impatience impact our lives. If you are in a room full of people, and a very calm person walks in. You can feel the vibration change, it becomes more peaceful. There is a constant interaction of energy and we can meditate and be conscious of the vibrations. Sometimes the negative vibrations come, not from others but from us.
How to manifest divinity in our day to day activities? How can I develop greater love for God? Daya Mataji says- Love is the higher vibration, the subtle spiritual energy. We all want to experience the zeal, the yearning for Him that subtly (spiritually) fills the heart. This sublime state of consciousness is more than just devotion. We have to cultivate the nurturing of true devotion, the awakening of which lies in the willingness to persevere in performing those actions that are pleasing to Him, and not necessarily pleasing to us. God gave man free will. Free will means that at any moment in our lives we have a choice. Can you redo an action done before? Can you really know what you will be thinking after five minutes? Free will is in the moment. The scriptures do not say that God is ‘Omni-past’ or ‘Omni-future’. Divine consciousness manifest in the moments of our lives.
For instance, after a deep peaceful meditation, someone (with a negative vibration) comes to you. How do you react? You have a choice- either you strike back or you manifest peace, calmness and understanding. Do you see the difference in the manifestations of subtle spiritual energy? To persevere in performing those actions once or twice is not enough, perseverance means: moment after moment, day after day, year after year.
In The Holy Science, Sri Yukteswerji says- only with the purification of the heart, we can tune in with the higher vibration of Aum. One of the keys to the purification of the heart is moral courage. Yama and Niyama, the first 2 steps in Patanjali’s Ashtanga Yoga (eight-fold path of Yoga) are the Do’s and Don’ts… so that we cleanse our hearts and bring the higher vibrations into our consciousness. If we react to negativity and restlessness in our lives, our consciousness becomes restless, so, at the end of the day, at the time of meditation, we have to first fight the negativity collected throughout the day. But if you fill every moment with love, peace etc., where is your consciousness? If you don’t build upon the higher vibrations during the day, your meditations will not bear fruit.
In one sense the spiritual path is very basic. God and Guru are aware of our consciousness.
1) Many years ago, when I was in Dwarahat ashram (in the Himalayas), Swami Sharananada sent me to Haldwani, to do some shopping for the ashram. While returning to Dwarahat, I got into a very crowded bus; only one corner seat in the last row was vacant. I asked the man sitting near the aisle, to let me pass, but he was too engrossed in his book. Ultimately I had to push him to get to my seat. I was really surprised, when I saw that the man was reading Autobiography of a Yogi! I saw that Guruji was playing with me to see whether I would get frustrated! I learnt a lesson.
2) One of our sanyasinis, before joining SRF went to a library. Suddenly one book from the top shelf fell on her head! It was the AY!
God is with us: it is important to remember this. Ultimately we have to try and seek Him in the moments when we are confronted with negativity. Each moment is the next step in our spiritual unfoldment. Think about that. Why? In that moment God gave us free will- we can either react in a negative manner or choose to manifest a higher vibration of love etc. Guruji says – even the channel is blessed. The higher vibration is flowing through us. Where is God? God is with us. Referring to Daya Mata’s quote-persevering in performing those actions that are pleasing to Him- these actions are higher or divine actions, which help us to become one with the joy and bliss of the soul. Devotion and commitment unfailingly draws the Divine response, helps us to overcome inertia and spiritual dryness, fulfills our hearts’ deepest craving and teaches us to love God unconditionally.
Guruji- “all you have to remember in this life is to do the best you can every moment, every day of your life. God wants continuity of effort from you. Remember in the midst of all activities God is ever with you.”
Jai Guru. ‘Jai Guru’ means- ‘victory over the lower self’. We have been drawn to the feet of a true Guru. Guruji’s promise is not an empty promise. We can experience God in this lifetime. The very purpose of life is to know God and Guruji will guide us back to Him.
Jai Guru. Close your eyes and meditate. Let us fill our hearts with a deep sense of gratitude- we have been drawn not just to one Guru, but a line of Gurus, to understand that the world at large is not such a perfect and joyous place.