Yoga And Meditation

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Yoga And Meditation

The practice of yoga and meditation has become increasingly popular in the past few years, but I am sure that there are many people who are still asking themselves, “What’s in it for me?” So, if you have been wondering whether it would be worth your time to start practicing yoga and meditation, I would like to give you five good reasons why it would be a very worthwhile activity for you.

1. Yoga and meditation will improve your health

Yoga postures put gentle pressure on the internal organs of the body and help them to function properly. In particular the postures help your digestive system to work smoothly and thus avoid problems such as constipation, acidity and indigestion, which are common conditions that can lead to more serious problems later on. Meditation and deep relaxation can be just what you need to lower your blood pressure. Thus, yoga postures plus meditation is a great combination for maintaining and improving health.

2. Yoga and meditation will help you to overcome bad habits

What’s a “bad habit?” It’s something that you are doing continually, and something that you know is harming you but you can’t stop it. Are you smoking now? Maybe you thought it was good when you started, but you would now like to stop. The trouble is that it is not so easy to quit smoking or a similar habit once it has become established.

This is where yoga and meditation can help you out. The yoga postures help you to become more relaxed and mentally balanced. Meditation can help you to concentrate your mind and build up your will-power. Once you become internally balanced and have a stronger will power, it will become possible for you to break any habit, even one that you have been troubled by for many years.

3. Yoga and meditation will help you to lose weight

Obesity is one of the biggest health problems of the modern era. Our lives have become more sedentary and our food sources have changed over the last 100 years and this why many adults and even children are now overweight.

Although this is a life-style problem, it is something that can be dealt with. The surest way to lose weight is to get more exercise and to control what you are eating. This is of course, easier said than done. But yoga and meditation can help you out. There are some yoga postures that are helpful in weight loss programs. Similarly, the mental strength that you can get from both yoga postures and from meditation can help you to gain a better control over your diet and this can result in healthy and permanent weight loss.

4. Yoga and meditation will bring you inner peace

You may be earning a lot of money and you may have a lot of social prestige but is physical or social wealth the goal of your life? Whatever material or social wealth you have, if you are not contented, satisfied and at peace with yourself then you will not be a happy person.

The goal of meditation is to help you find the inner core of your being. Who are you? Is it the name and address on your identity card? If you start meditating you will find that deep within you is a pool of infinite love and peace. This is the real you. If you can reach this place, then you will find peace and contentment; it is guaranteed!

5. Yoga and meditation will make you a wiser person

Every one of us has made mistakes that we regret. There is nothing we can do about the past. We can’t go back in time and not make the mistakes. But what we can do is to build up our capacity to see what has permanent value and what is transitory. When we attain this state of discrimination, then we will not do actions that we will regret later on.

Meditation helps a person to go beyond the “chatter” of the mind and attain a state of wisdom that will always be of help. Wisdom does not mean stuffing your mind with “facts” but it does mean to have a mind that will choose a course of action that brings about the welfare of everyone.

Om Namah Shivay

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Moving In Sync With The Cosmic Flow

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Moving In Sync With The Cosmic Flow

To count beads or practise ritualistic worship without directing one’s mind towards the Supreme is of no use. To pretend to be virtuous outside while harbouring sinful thoughts within is absolutely meaningless. The beginning, the middle and end of dharma sadhana is to rush towards the Supreme, to channelise all positive and negative propensities of mind towards the Entity. Spiritual aspirants will not destroy material desires but will utilise them for their benefit. When utilised as aids for spiritual progress they will do no further harm.

So-called jnanis or intellectuals may fight the propensity of krodha, anger, but seekers will utilise it to fight staticity. They will shatter the meanness and pettiness of the mind through psychic strength and fearsome temper. So-called jnanis claim that the propensity of lobha, greed, is harmful, but aspirants disagree ­ they nurture greed to attain the Supreme. Jnanis abhor mada or pride but seekers say that the only object of pride in their lives is Parama Purusha. Jnanis detest the propensity of moha, blind attachment, but aspirants say, “I am already in love with the Supreme. I have a blind attachment for attaining the Ultimate. The propensity of jealousy is very bad, but a spiritual aspirant will never take it as harmful. In this way spiritual aspirants keep their vision fixed on Brahmn.

Those who fail to focus their entire existence upon the Supreme, those who do not flow towards the macrocosmic nucleus of the cosmic cycle, realise one day that everything in their lives has become futile. On seeing the ostentatious practices of religion the popular ideas of a Sufi saint are likely to arise in the mind of a spiritual aspirant: “I listen to the voice of the muezzin from the minaret in darkness. I say you are all fools ­ where is your God? He is neither here, nor there.” When the cosmic flow is inspired by the cosmic nucleus it vibrates in its entirety, thereby vibrating all the receptive minds in the universe. These emanated vibrations take different forms to provide momentum to human beings in different ways.

This force of inspiration keeps all receptive minds connected to Purushottama, the Supreme Source of all emanations, and motivates them to rush towards Him.

When the macrocosmic stance dances in its individual macrocosmic flow, the microcosms dance in pararasa, individual flow.

In the past the svarasa, divine flow, of Brahmn, the Supreme Consciousness, was expressed through Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, causing people to madly run after him, dancing, crying, singing and laughing in ecstatic joy.Brahmn’s svarasa was also expressed in the flute melody of Krishna, which resonated with such divine sweetness that people ran towards it, madly forgetting their family , culture, prestige, lineage, and so on.

The gopis of Vrindavan also danced, sang and burst into laughter to the strains of the flute. In Ananda Marga this divine flow of Brahmn is embedded in different lessons of spiritual meditation.Those who practise this meditation ­ whether in the present or the future, whether within time or beyond time ­ will certainly cry, sing and dance with exquisite spiritual joy, and advance steadily towards the blissful macrocosmic stance.

Advancing thus, establishing oneself in yama and niyama, cardinal moral principles, and becoming a true sadvipra or spiritual revolutionary, one will attain oneness with the Supreme Entity. The highest fulfilment in life lies in movement in the cosmic flow. The path along which this movement takes place is called the path of bliss, Ananda Marga.

Om Namah Shivay

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Strength Of Mind For Spiritual Awareness

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Cultivate spiritual awareness. Swami Sivananda has said, “The aim of human life is not God-realisation; rather, it is the cultivation of spiritual awareness.” How far you are able to go, does not matter. Do not think about one hundred per cent; try to obtain even half a per cent of spiritual awareness in your life and you will have obtained everything. When the mind is free from its sensorial, mundane and external attachments, then, it cultivates its own strength.

Three strengths

There are three strengths of the mind: iccha shakti, will power; jnana shakti, knowledge power; kriya shakti, creative power. Even now you have these three within you; however, you are not utilising them, as there is a dissipation of mental faculties and energies. Similarly, for example, when a bulb is turned on, the light spreads in all directions, it is dissipated. The light is there, no doubt, but there is no force in that light.

But, if you were able to focus the power of light to a single point, it becomes a laser beam and thus gains in strength. You can apply that laser beam to cut through metal, perform optical nerve surgery, and so on. It is this focussing of mental perceptions that you attain in dharana, which leads to the development of willpower, iccha shakti, and the mind gains its true strength and its true character.

How the mind, the ego or intellect works, we do not know, and we should not bother about it. We must know how we can handle the situations, circumstances and conditions that alter our perspective of ourselves.

Once the mind becomes as powerful as alaser beam, knowledge also becomes focussed. Right now all the knowledge that you have acquired is dissipated, but when it is focussed, it becomes jnana shakti. The simplest way to understand jnana shakti is as the quality of understanding. I believe the greatest strength in the world is not love, as many people say. Love is not astrength, nor is compassion or sympathy. The highest quality of life is understanding.

Root of life

If you can understand situations, if you can understand life, then all the best qualities flower spontaneously within you without any effort. Understanding is the root of life that has to be watered daily. Love, compassion and the other sattvic qualities are flowers and fruit of the tree of life, which you can admire and enjoy, but understanding is the root of the tree of life. Therefore, ensure that you give water and compost to that root of life on a regular basis. Protect the root of life from the insects and rodents that nibble away at it, which are not visible, being underground.

Highest quality

The highest quality that anyone can have in life is understanding. Everything else falls into place after that. If there is no understanding, you can be going gaga with love and that will not help at all. That love will have no meaning for you, that compassion will have no meaning for you.

Cultivate understanding. With the cultivation of understanding, that is, with jnana shakti, kriya shakti becomes predominant. And with that kriya shakti, creative and harmonious interaction between the individual and the world arises.

Om Namah Shivay

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तुम मुझे देखा करो और मैं तुम्हें देखा करूँ

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हमारा मन वहीं लगता है, जहाँ हमारी अभिलाषित वस्तु होती है, जहाँ हमें अपनी रूचि के अनुकूल सुख, सौंदर्य, माधुर्य, ऐश्वर्य आदि दिखायी देते हैं | विचार करके देखने से पता लगता है कि जगत में हम जो प्रिय वस्तु, सुख, सौन्दर्य, माधुर्य, ऐश्वर्य आदि देखते है, उन सभी का पूर्ण अमित अनन्त भण्डार श्रीभगवान हैं | समस्त वस्तुएँ, समस्त गुण, समस्त सुख-सौन्दर्य भगवान् के किसी एक अंश के प्रतिबिम्बमात्र हैं | उस महान अनन्त अगाध सागर के सीकर-कण की छायामात्र हैं | हमें जो वस्तु जितनी चाहिए, जब चाहिए, वही वस्तु उतनी ही और उसी समय भगवान् में मिल सकती है; क्योंकि वे सदा-सर्वदा उनसे अनन्तरूप से भरी हैं और चाहे जितनी निकाल ली जानेपर भी कभी उनकी अनन्तता में कमी नहीं आती | अतएव हमारा मन जिस किस में लगता हो, उसी को दृढ विश्वास के साथ भगवान् में देखना चाहिए | फिर हम कभी भगवान् से अलग नहीं होंगे और भगवान् हमसे अलग नहीं होंगे; क्योंकि सबकुछ भगवान् से, भगवान् में है तथा भगवत्स्वरूप ही है | भगवान् ने कहा है—
यो मां पश्यति सर्वत्र सर्वं च मयि पश्यति |
तस्याहं न प्रणश्यामि स च मे प्रणश्यति ||
(गीता ६ | ३०)
‘जो पुरुष सम्पूर्ण भूतों में सबके आत्मरूप मुझ वासुदेव को ही व्यापक देखता है और सम्पूर्ण भूतों को मुझ वासुदेव के अंतर्गत देखता है, उसके लिए मैं अदृश्य नहीं होता और वह मेरे लिए अदृश्य नहीं होता | भाव यह कि वह मुझे देखता रहता है और मैं उसे देखता रहता हूँ |’

इसी के साथ हमें अपने को ऐसा बनाना चाहिए, जो भगवान् को अत्यन्त प्रिय हो | गीता में १२वें अध्याय के १३वें से १९वें श्लोक तक भगवान् ने अपने प्रिय भक्त के लक्षणों का वर्णन किया है | और अंत में कहा है—
ये तु धर्म्यामृतमिदं यथोक्तं पर्युपासते।
श्रद्दधाना मत्परमा भक्तास्तेऽतीव मे प्रिया:॥
( गीता १२ | २०)
‘परन्तु जो श्रद्धायुक्त पुरुष मेरे परायण होकर इस ऊपर कहे हुए धर्ममय अमृत को निष्काम प्रेमभाव से सेवन करते हैं अर्थात् उस प्रकार का अपना जीवन बनाने में तत्पर होते हैं, वे भक्त मुझको अतिशय प्रिय हैं |’

इसलिए हमें अपने में उन सब भावों की दृढ़ स्थापना करनी चाहिए, जो भगवान् को प्रिय हैं | ऐसा होनेपर जब भगवान हमसे प्रेम करने लगेंगे, उनका मन हममें लगा रहेगा—(प्रेम तो वे अब भी करते हैं | परन्तु हमें उनका अनुभव नहीं होता, उनके अनुकूल आचरण करने से अर्थात् उन सब प्रिय गुणों को जीवन में उतरने से हमें भगवान् के प्रेम का अनुभव होने लगेगा) तब हमारा मन भी उसमें लगा रहेगा | हमें तो बस, विनोदपूर्वक भगवान् से यही भाव रखना चाहिए और यही मन-ही-मन कहना चाहिए कि ‘प्रभो ! न तो मैं दूसरों को देखूंगा और न आपको देखने दूंगा |’

आवहु मेरे नयन में पलक बन्द करि लेउँ |
ना मैं देखौं और कौं ना तोहि देखन देउँ ||
नारायण जाके हृदै सुन्दर श्याम समाय |
फूल-पात-फल-डार में ता कौं वही दिखाय ||

Om Namah Shivay

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Thought to Ponder About – Why No one is Happy?

 

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Yesterday, I was driving, and the FM radio went off for few seconds. I thought, I should have an iPod. Then suddenly I realized that I have not used my iPod in last 6 months. And then, more things, Handy cam in last 2 years, Digital Camera in last 2 months, DVD player in last 1 month and many more. Now I can say that I bought that Handy cam just out of impulse, I have used it twice only in last 4 years.

So, what’s wrong and where? When I look at myself or my friends I can see it everywhere. We are not happy with what we have but all are stressed and not happy for the things we don’t have. You have a Santro, but you want City; You have a City, but you want Skoda. Just after buying a new phone, we need another one. Better laptop, bigger TV, faster car, bigger house, more money. I mean, these examples are endless.  Do we ever think if we actually need those things before we want them?

After this, I was forced to think what I need and what I don’t. May be I didn’t need this Handy cam or the iPod or that DVD player. When I see my father back at home. He has a simple BPL colour TV, he doesn’t need 32″ Sony LCD wall mount. He has a cell phone worth Rs 2,500. Whenever I ask him to change the phone, he always says, “Its a phone, I need this just for calls.”

And believe me; he is much happier in life than me with those limited resources and simple gadgets. The very basic reason why he is happy with so little is that he doesn’t want things in life to make it luxurious, but he wants only those things which are making his life easier. It’s a very fine line between these two, but after looking my father’s life style closely, I got the point. He needs a cell phone but not the iPhone. He needs a TV but not the 32″ plasma. He needs a car but not an expensive one.

Initially I had lot of questions.

I am earning good, still I am not happy,…why ?

I have all luxuries, still I am stressed…. ……. why ?

I had a great weekend, still I am feeling tired…… why?

I met lot of people, I thought over it again and again, I still don’t know if I got the answers, but certainly figured out few things. I realize that one thing which is keeping me stressed is the “stay connected” syndrome. I realized that, at home also I am logged in on messengers, checking mails, using social networks, and on the top of that, the windows mobile is not letting me disconnected. On the weekend itself, trying to avoid unwanted calls, and that is keeping my mind always full of stress. I realized that I am spending far lesser money than what I earn, even then I am always worried about money and more money. I realized that I am saving enough money I would ever need, whenever needed. Still I am stressed about job and salary and spends.

May be, many people will call this approach “not progressive attitude”, but I want my life back. Ultimately it’s a single life, a day gone is a day gone. I believe if I am not happy tonight, I’ll never be happy tomorrow morning. I finally realized that meeting friends, spending quality time with your loved one’s; spending time with yourself is the most important thing.

If on Sunday you are alone and you don’t have anybody to talk with, then all that luxuries of life, all that money is wasted. May be cutting down your requirements, re-calculating your future goal in the light of today’s happiness is a worthwhile thing to do. May be selling off your Santro and buying Honda City on EMIs is not a good idea. I believe putting your happiness ahead of money is the choice we need to make.

I think, a lot can be said and done but what we need the most is re-evaluation of the value of happiness and time we are giving to our life and people associated with it.

Think about it.

Om Namah Shivay

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How to Get Over the Hurt-2

 

 

The question still remains: How to get over the hurt? I would like to cover this answer in two posts. In today’s write-up, let me begin with a beautiful story:

Once upon a time, there was a guy. He deeply loved a girl. He dreamed of her all the time. He would send her flowers, give her gifts, say nice things, and express his love. She accepted his gifts, flowers, chocolates and all, but wouldn’t give or say anything in return other than a thank you. The boy still didn’t lose hope and thought one day his love would win over her, that, one day she would melt and she would reciprocate. He thought the girl did love him, only that she wasn’t expressing it yet. It went on a for a while. Nothing changed.

One day, the girl informed him that she was moving out of town. He pleaded with her to not go. The girl, however, said that she had more important things to do.

“Why, what about love? Is it not important? Don’t you love me?” the guy said.

“Love? What about it? I never loved you,” she said.

The guy got up and left the place. Everyone in the friends and family got concerned about him. They were certain he was broken beyond repair, but there was not a sign of hurt on his face or in his actions. Some thought he was really depressed and was acting cocky to hide his real feelings. A few days passed and he kept on living normally. One day his friends confronted him.

“You must be really sad and heartbroken. We know you are hurt,” they said.

“Hurt? Not really. I’m happier than before.”

“How can this be? You loved her to bits, whereas she dumped you callously saying she never loved you.”

“You see,” he said, “I lost someone who never loved me, but she lost someone who loved her deeply. So, tell me, who has actually lost?”

The story above gives us a perspective. And, it’s all about the perspective, a viewpoint, how we take what we get, how we look at what life makes us see. We are no one to judge the girl in the story either. Who knows maybe she had another reason she chose to not say. Matters of the heart can’t be forced or comprehended, really. Besides, my focus is the guy in the story above, for, he was the one who was supposed to be hurt.

So, what is the learning in the story, you may ask? Here it is: stop looking at yourself as the victim. I know you may not like it but it’s the truth. If you are getting hurt because you are in an abusive relationship, in which case we need to deal with it differently, I agree you are the victim. But, in normal relationships, when you choose to ignore what the other person really wants, and when you focus on only your preferences, you automatically set yourself up for great disappointment.

That’s not all, though. A long ago I wrote on the karmic account. Nature operates in a wholesome and integrated manner. When you are hurt, you should take a hard look at if you are hurting someone too? They could be your siblings, friends, family members, in-laws, colleagues, anyone. When we hurt someone, it doesn’t mean the same person will hurt us back. It simply means that in the immaculate laws of Nature, She will setup someone else to deliver the goods.

I would like to reiterate that this post is about getting hurt in a non-abusive relationship. Abusive relationships, even though common, are anomalies in Nature. They are dealt with differently. I also understand that this is not exactly a motivational post for those who are hurt, but, I do hope you’ve some food for thought.

In a nutshell, we should examine if we are reasonable with our expectations we have from the other person, and, if we are taking responsibility of the choices we have made, and, if we are hurting anyone else, anyone at all in this creation.

Reflect on the above and act accordingly, and I promise you’ll become your own witness to a powerful inner transformation. Your mind will become like the quiet sea, like the blue sky, like the gentle breeze, like the steady stream.

Om Namah Shivay

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To be Hindu is Not Communal-2

 

10994434_894713397279177_3659621482867604697_nWhile the conquerors ruled, cultural evolution which in any society progresses from historical memory, tradition and legend, stagnated. Spontaneous development of faith and religion of the native people, that periodically discards socially unacceptable practices, came to a halt. Muslim rule went to a point of decay, and in one of the greatest ironies of history, that has never happened in any other land, there came another lot of invaders by sea, did business in India, and established political rulership, delivering Hindustan from the first invader. Another cultural churning and cross fertilization of ideas of west and east took place, completely mismatched in terms of space and time, but it led to the independence movement, and the idea of democracy was imported into our land.

But democracy meant numbers. The erstwhile Muslim aristocracy, who considered themselves legitimate successors to the throne of India realised the dilemma of democracy and numbers, which meant subordination to their previous subjects. The Congress party failed in negotiating with the Muslim League, failed to engage in a give and take, and the demand for Pakistan matured. The Muslim League opted out of independent India, encouraged by the colonial power, as we are now informed, and created their own nation carved out of areas that had never really voted for Pakistan. The real votaries of Pakistan, from UP and Bihar remained in India. Perhaps this is something, again unspoken and unsaid, that the erstwhile Muslim aristocracy in India and Pakistan have yet to come to terms with. We gained and we lost, and that without a gunshot being fired, though the wounds of partition still rankle.

No one is accustomed to seeing a strong Hindu, or a strong Hinduism. (The meaning of these words may be taken ad libitum.) The greatest theologians, sociologists and scholars have not been able to define Hinduism, and as a humble lawyer, there is little I can add to their resources. But I do know the meaning of Hindutva, the definition of which has been given a finality by a Supreme Court judgement. Even before Muslim and British rule, India entertained Christian missionaries, and gave safe haven to the Jews and the Parsees, and never persecuted any religious denomination. Hindutva is the spirit of the people of India, through the ages, and perhaps the reason why it has survived conquest, genocide and subjugation.

A strong Hinduism would imply the strength of 80% of our population, that would wreck the personal power agendas of the present ruling class of India. Hence the concerted strategy of the UPA government to create a fear psychosis that even the mere mention of the word Hindu conveys communalism, and keep the majority permanently weak. How else would anyone explain the noxious Communal Violence Bill of the National Advisory Council, that the government wants to inflict upon the nation and destroy the critical mass of religious harmony that exists in our country? The media has been captured, and a new class of intellectual neo-secularists have been bred, with adequate space and due recognition for regular Hindu bashing.

The minorities of our country should emphatically be explained that they have nothing to fear from the spirit of Hindutva which has pervaded our society from times immemorial, and there is no threat in it to them. Their religious rights are protected by the Constitution. However, it is sad that political commentators and the media continue to project Hindutva as a communal word, just because the word is rooted in “Hindu”, even though the Supreme Court ruling of 1990s has given the final interpretation of it. That, “Ordinarily, Hindutva is understood as a way of life or a state of mind and is not to be equated with or understood as religious Hindu fundamentalism”, it is a fallacy and an error of law to proceed on the assumption that the use of words Hindutva or Hinduism per se depicts an attitude hostile to all persons practising any religion other than the Hindu religion. In other words, Hindutva is nothing but a secular way of life, and a shield to protect the minorities.

The world is also happy to see India weak and torn by internal disunity. A strong India, where the majority of the people can move forward, united in harmony, disturbs the balance of power. Despite our poverty, malnutrition and lack of proper governance to encourage human resource development, the average IQ of our people is far higher than that of many developed nations. If this is garnered constructively towards building the nation, without divisive forces and corruption wrecking them from within, India can become an economic and political giant.

Om Namah Shivay

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