Chakra Journey

 

The following was taken from a recent Heartfulness newsletter which is sent out to abhyasis. The words are those of Daaji and I’m adding this here for additional visibility and also to highlight some of the more esoteric and mystical aspects of the very simple path of Sahaj Marg / Heartfulness. If you’re reading this and 1) not an abhyasi or practitioner of Heartfulness meditation, or 2) don’t possess much of the Sahaj Marg library, or 3) have experienced only the “surface level” of our path (which itself at that level is still quite deep), or 4) all the above – then this might be confusing to you. No worries. Just read it and keep moving.

“Polarity exists in the Heart Region; opposites are there. Once you cross the Heart Region or Pind Pradesh, all the dwandwas (opposites) related to the pancha bhutas are dropped. If you are still stuck between dwandwas it is an impossibility for you to enter the Cosmic Region. So polarity finishes in the Heart Region. Then, what remains in the Cosmic Region? More and more of less and less of the ego. It is no longer a matter of opposites; it is only the extent of the ego that is refined. Then, once you enter the Central Region, it is a different ball game again; more and more of less and less of bliss, to the extent that it is zeroed out.”

Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shanti

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Points of Interest

By now it’s well documented that many Eastern traditions have known things which the Western is only just now beginning to recognize. Certain examples might include the nature of matter and energy, the shape and structure of the universe and space, and certain features and functions and compositions of the human being. Likely falling under the last of the list I just made would be the images shown below. I don’t rightly know if I’m “allowed” to share these images and diagrams with the world via our wide web, because in every path there are many things (often of an esoteric value) which paths don’t typically let anyone and everyone to see and which instead are reserved for the initiates.

However, whispers coming from The Hierarchy in the Brighter World have indicated that change is happening – at an unprecedented rate and in unprecedented ways. That alone, I think, is enough so-called “wiggle room” for me to be able to share the information below and not to be breaking any rule. But even if it isn’t, those who know me personally will know that I often live my the motto of it being better to ask forgiveness than to ask for permission. So… Imma do what I think I should, regardless of what’s technically allowed or not.

For those already walking the path of Sahaj Marg or Heartfulness, this content might be nothing new to you. Depending on what Sahaj Marg / Heartfulness books are in your home library, you may well have seen these diagrams already – and if you have, then you probably already have read the surrounding information which does a better job explaining foundational and peripheral knowledge related to these images. If that’s you, then you are a bit ahead of the game and these will make more sense to you.

For anyone very new to this path, or who maybe has a home library which doesn’t include the books detailing this information, this might be content you haven’t before seen. That’s fine. For you folks, you’ll want to keep in  mind that these diagrams are (to say the least) digest versions of deeper knowledge relating to our path. Take from these whatever you can, and don’t worry too much about anything you aren’t super clear on or places where you think you see holes in the information presented.

Regardless of whether or not these diagrams are new to you, feel free to leave your thoughts in a comment below or through contacting me privately. (If you haven’t commented here before, then your comment will require my approval – so leaving a first-time comment IS a way to contact me privately if you can find no other way. Just FYI.)

Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shanti

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HuffPost, Y’all

Daaji, the “global guide” for Heartfulness and Sahaj Marg, now has a regular blog postings at the HuffPost Healthy Living site. You can find it by clicking here. The first post you’ll see here is that Daaji discusses “How to Put Your Heart Into Living” and breaks that approach up into ideas dealing with “How do we compromise our intrinsic good?” “How does the heart speak?” “Easing the burden: the play of heart and mind” and “How to integrate the heart and mind?”

Before diving into these areas of discussion, Daaji gives a few examples of when ignoring the heart and its connection to the brain lead us awry. “There are many issues at play. The most powerful arise when we ignore the intrinsic goodness and the intrinsic peace that exist in all of us,” he says, to gently remind us of what Eastern Dharmas have told us for many thousands of years and which is a trademark difference between spiritual paths originating in the East versus those from the Middle East or West.

When discussing the usual compromise of intrinsic goodness experienced by each of us, Daaji rightly points out that the whole mess begins with us labeling things and experiences and then being caught between these labels of our own making. Here in the USA, that is very apparent – and something about which we’re in deep denial. Regardless of the context – whether political, religious, sexual, economic, you name it – we do nothing but label and categorize things and experiences and then find ourselves caught because we’re so buried in self-created madness that we lose the right ability of discernment.

The first thing shared with us about how the heart speaks is that which is really common sense, but which most people gloss over: When we do what we ought to the heart is at peace and is silent, but when the opposite is true the heart protests! All of this hinges on simplicity and being in tune with Nature – relating back directly to the Ten Maxims.

The heart and mind, Daaji says, are always interconnected and when mindfulness and heartfulness are in perfect synchronicity they function as one and purpose in life is experienced and realized.

In closing we focus on integration – what Sahaj Marg and Heartfulness are really all about. Daaji mentions the need for observing “inner weather” – not too far off from the many times I’ve mentioned here about tending to one’s inner landscape or inner garden. We learn to still the mind, connect with and through the heart and find ourselves evolving and as Daaji pointed out, “… we steer through life wisely, steadfastly, sans regrets.”

Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shri Gurubhyo Namaha |Aum Shanti

Bad Words

Image taken from Google Image search

Image taken from Google Image search

 

A short time ago, a friend and I were talking about bad language. Swear words. I use them often. There’s a “study” that makes rounds on Facebook every once in a while that apparently legitimately indicates that people who swear regularly are statistically more honest. One of my favorite things about my maternal grandmother is her swearing ability. Truly, par excellence. She can fit 6 swear words into a 4-word sentence without violating any rules of grammar. Swear words are descriptive in practically artistic ways. I speak English and much German and I’ve encountered swear words in French and Gaelic and I’ve noticed that calling someone a certain swear word in one language doesn’t necessarily translate to the same in another language. I could provide you examples, but I won’t.

Why won’t I? Because it’s likely – even very likely – that you are already programmed to think swear words are really and truly bad words. So many people have believed this that you could say there’s an alternate vocab list that can be used instead and which let’s the user off the profanity hook. For instance, if I say darn or shoot then you probably wouldn’t flinch. You know exactly what I’m meaning to say, but for some stupid reason there’s a difference in your head between shoot and shit, darn and damn. Trust me, there isn’t really.

But we typically think there is, because of impressions we carry. Those impressions can go quite deep – so deep we’re no longer aware of how they influence us. It’s said that the road to Hell is paved with good intentions. Pulling a gun’s trigger is pulling a gun’s trigger. If you’re intending to hit a “bad guy” but instead hit and kill an innocent bystander – does that change anything about you firing the gun? Nope. You intended to hit a person and so you fired a gun. Sorry about your bad aim and that innocent’s unfortunate karma, but nothing changes in that situation just because you intended a different target.

When I was a teenager I had a friend – a sweet Christian girl named Stephanie who only a month or so ago died of cancer. She always wore glitter eye shadow. Always. If anyone was ever the human equivalent of a Care Bear, Stephanie was. (That’s not a jab at her). She was kind and sweet and nearly always smiling. And when she stubbed her toe or someone made her mad she would say, “PINEAPPLE!” – and she said it with gusto! For any situation where I might say shit or damn or drop the f-bomb, Stephanie would use the word, pineapple. Similarly, I’ve heard people say things like, “Bananas!” or “Fudge!” When I was growing up and yet living at home, my brothers and I weren’t allowed to say “freakin'” because, as my mom once made very VERY clear to me, “That’s about as close to FUCK as you can get!”

You see? There’s no difference. If I say fudge and I mean fudge, then I’m saying fudge. Simple. Equally as simple, and yet somehow twisted among the impressions we carry regarding this, if I say fudge and I mean fuck – I’m still truly just saying fuck. You can argue that there’s a difference and that saying fudge when you mean to employ the f-bomb is somehow better, but the truth is that sugar-coated poop is still poop.

The programming or impressions that most of us carry regarding this are something that should be managed in a healthy and effective manner. Sometimes, when I’m engaged in my Heartfulness meditation practice, things like this surface and knock my socks off. Sometimes you don’t realize how frankly ridiculous you’ve been until you enable yourself to step aside briefly and see from a different angle, as the Observer. Without this, it’s like walking across a dirty floor time after time and always having dirty feet as a result. We come to recognize dirty feet as a norm, but shouldn’t. It’s good – and necessary – to stir that dirt up and get it off the floor so that our feet can become, and stay, clean.

In our meditation practice there’s a cleaning that happens. A lightening of these sorts of burdens. In fact, this is a significant part of an individual’s process of self-evolution and integration. It’s healthy. In order for us to move forward and become a better Christian or Muslim or Hindu or Atheist or Manager or Cashier or Mom or Dad or Prostitute we need to take a look at these things that are weighing us down unnecessarily and discard them as the lunacy they are.

Another bit of dirt clinging to the bottom of your foot and which you might want to look at is the reaction you had when I mentioned becoming a better prostitute. Thanks for reading.

Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shanti

Sams-karma-s

Image taken from Google Image search

Image taken from Google Image search

 

So… the title of this post is a real botch job, don’t hate me. I was combining the word karma into the word samskara. The terms are very different and yet intimately related. Karma, in its most dummied down translation, is “action” and samskara, in like form, means impression – a subtle impression that is carried with us. Have you ever reacted in a certain way and almost felt you had no choice? That was probably the influence of some kind of impression / samskara. Obviously, something like that would influence your actions (reactions) and so you can see the two are a closely knitted pair.

The Heartfulness path (aka Sahaj Marg) deals heavily with both of these concepts, although quite extensively with samskaras. The “magic” of this path and our practice is that the samskaras are “scrubbed” away through the diligent employment of our practice.

Recently, through a couple Daily Reflections delivered into my inbox, I received a nice lesson. Everyone thinks about karma and samskara in regard to thing you have done or might do. But our guru, Kamlesh D. Patel, helps us understand that there’s another side of the coin: Inaction. I guess this might mean those could’as, would’as, and should’as. The things you didn’t do or say that you should have or really needed to (not for your benefit but for the benefit of others). Many times when people speak of regret they speak of something they wish they’d said or done or somewhere they’d gone. Sometimes this feeling of regret really sticks to a person – like a subtle impression. And obviously, the application of all this is not limited to regret. After all, we’re talking about very subtle components of life. Many people wander through life practically oblivious to really blatant and mundane things, so it’s no wonder at all to consider that these impressions formed from inaction wouldn’t necessarily be on one’s radar.

In the second edition of Designing Destiny (2015), Shri Kamlesh-bhai said of inaction, “It is not only our actions that promote samskaras. Our inactions can create lethal samskaras that are worse than those created by our actions.” In the same chapter of that book, he also states, “Samskaras created by inactions, deliberate inactions, amount to the heaviest of the samskaras in our system. They can be removed, no doubt, but then a commitment of very high order is required. Your cooperation at every level is required.”

I think these quotes communicate some very serious and helpful information. Kamlesh-bhai uses the word lethal. That’s a heavy word. Means deadly, right? Without further research I won’t guess at what Kamlesh-bhai fully meant in the usage of that word, but from where I sit I see a connection to the usage of that word within the context of samskaras. For as long as we carry these impressions / samskaras, we’ll be saddled with karma. And as long as either applies to our existence, our existence will be tied directly to the wheel of samsara – which is the cycle of death and rebirth. Because death is not the opposite of life, but rather the opposite of birth, Kamlesh-bhai’s use of “lethal” seems to point directly to that connection between death and rebirth.

There are a number of things to take from our guru-ji’s words but this one implication – inaction being lethal – is really enough to give everyone pause and serious consideration to why you sometimes don’t do the things you don’t do.

Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shanti

Hurry Up and Wait

My life is a relatively busy one. I use the word relative because I know of people whose lives are far busier than mine – either because they want that busy-ness or because they need to be doing everything they do just to live. Usually, the busy I deal with is a mix – stuff related to school or work, or both, and things I want to do. I’m fortunate enough that, for the most part, regardless of what’s on my To-Do list, I have a lot of say in what I choose to do. That’s an excellent thing to have in life, but one I forget about too often.

I’ve written here before that 2014 was THE year from hell. In discussions of various types with various people I’ve revealed just how dark 2014 was and the reasons for why it isn’t allowed to repeat itself are just as dark. But a part of why 2014 was so miserable is that I felt like I had too much on my plate that had to be dealt with. School felt very demanding. Work was, indeed, the most demanding I’ve ever known and very stressful. My birth mother’s body died (BTW, today is the 55th anniversary of when that human body was birthed). I bought a house and all the wonder that comes with that kind of thing. Then also other usual stuff almost everyone else faces like trying to see family and friends as much as is wanted or needed, trying not to be a burden on others’ lives, stress from the holiday season, … y’know, the usual.

Throughout all of that, I’m sad to report, my meditation practice waned a bit. To be clear: I never stopped meditating. Sahaj Marg is an important force in my life. But I don’t recall having any sittings in 2014. I rarely went to satsanghs either. I read a lot of our masters’ books (mostly Chariji’s, since he has been the most prolific writer out of the last 3 masters) and I did keep up with my practice at home. But I still felt out of touch. When the rest of your world seems to be spinning out of control, a meditation practice that is meant for “human integration” can be vital.

We’re now wrapping up the sixth month of 2015, and it’s been entirely different. I’ll spare you all the details of exactly how life is different, but it is. It’s different enough that I’m nowhere near the dark place I was this time a year ago.

But still, there are days when I feel overwhelmed by the householder (grhasta) dharma. It’s Sunday morning as I’m writing this and I’ve slept in later than usual, although I didn’t have a late Saturday night. I’ve been physically awake for an hour right now and all I’ve done is hit the bathroom, open all the blinds in my house to let in gorgeous sunlight (something rare lately in Indiana with all our rain!), let the dogs out, made some coffee for myself, and nest here in front of the laptop in my loft to write these words in English.

In the back of my head (and in the front of it) know the various “wants” and “needs” I should address today include: meditation / puja, mowing my yards (before more rain and house guests arrive!) and trimming, laundry, school work, yoga / jogging, going to my in-laws to pick up things needed for later this week, some minor gardening, and probably sixty other things that will creep in as the day passes.

The list of things to do isn’t very big right? Seems like it should be easily managed through the course of the day. But even a list like the one above hits me and is somewhat debilitating. I find myself mentally listing what should be accomplished today and with each new item thought of I’m a little more paralyzed. There’s a need within myself to ferret out the most productive way to do everything. The idea of inefficiency is stressful. Entire days have gone “wasted” because my To-Do list felt too immense to productively manage – so I did nothing! NOTHING. Well, not absolutely nothing: I’d find the effort within me somewhere to feed myself a few times, to maybe put some porn in front of my eyeballs, and to maybe also do a small amount of laundry (probably only because I could nap or otherwise be unproductive while the loads were going through their cycles). By virtually every standard, the day would go wasted – all because I started off wanting not to waste the day.

Another friend or two has expressed feeling similarly. It’s madness. Dysfunctional, right? Why are people immobilized by thoughts of doing things? I’m guessing the cause of this debilitation is multi-layered. Components include things like depression, feelings of being overwhelmed, inability to properly prioritize… those kinds of things seem like good culprits.

In a strong effort to make sure 2014 doesn’t repeat itself, I’ve really tried to approach a lot of life differently for 2015. A month or two ago, the local abhyasi community was studying the concept of cheerful acceptance. I missed some of the group study where this was covered, but I’ve done my best to read up about it on my own. That concept, as well as a few others in Sahaj Marg (many having to do with our 10 Maxims – I am about to start writing a series on each Maxim, actually), are part of the difference 2015 holds.

I still have a horrifying, terrible, paralyzing To-Do list for today. And as of the typing of these words, I still don’t know how any of those things will be accomplished or even how today will go. But I’m able to recognize and accept that regardless of how many things are on the list for today – or the nature of those things (how big they seem) – the day will be far bigger than the list as a whole.

I might get all of the list completed. I might complete less than half of it. That doesn’t really matter. What currently seems to matter more is feeling life in my days. People talk about “living life to the fullest,” but I’ve found that people who use that phrase often don’t seem to know what it means. It rarely means you have to go sky diving or eating fried scorpions in a Chinese street market – although those things can qualify. You could be repotting a philodendron in your back yard and live life to the fullest while you do that.

Half way through 2015 I’m able to say that the aforementioned paralysis isn’t as total as it has been in the past. Coming up to the loft this morning with my coffee in-hand and the To-Do list swirling around in the space between my ears I still felt a moment of anxiety: SHIT there’s so much to do. But it passed almost entirely, and quickly, too.

As I wrap up this post, that debilitating fear continues to leave me. I’m thankful that my personal evolution, my integration (my heartfulness practice), has afforded me a greater capacity to live more fully now instead of the way I lived before. The likely result is that I’m about to go live the shit outta mowing my yard. Then I’m going to live the shit outta doing some laundry while I finish up some gardening (living the shit outta that, too). With any luck, I’ll finish those tasks before yoga starts in the early afternoon. And if not, then I’ll live the shit outta life while doing some other things.

Have a good Sunday, reader, wherever you are. And whatever you’re doing in life today, do the shit out of it.

Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shanti

Too

Image taken from google Image search

Image taken from google Image search

Once in a while things that are common will strike me in a new, uncommon, way. Recently, this happened with the statement, “I love you, too.”

For as far back as I have memory, I’ve always noticed two things about telling someone you love them (or, rather, responding to being told that someone loves you). It seems that there are two ways in which this exchange occurs.

1) Someone says, “I love you” to you. You respond in turn with, “I love you.” Usually this response involves tonal emphasis on the final “you.” Like, “I love YOU.” (Although, obviously not in the obnoxious way the all-caps version can come across.)

2) Someone says, “I love you” to you. You respond in turn with, “I love you, too.” Like the response before, this response also usually carries emphasis on the final word – in this case, “too.”

I’ve heard both ways be used by many people and their loved ones. In my family, we tend to employ the second variation. “I love you, too.” I’ve always been fond of that one, probably because that’s what I grew up hearing and saying, but I think now I’m even fonder of it.

What’s the difference? Really and truly, there probably is no difference. But recently it seems to me that there really and truly is a difference and as you likely already could have guessed that difference hinges on the one difference between variation one and variation two: TOO.

I just used a phrase I first years only a couple years ago by a psychology professor. “Really and truly.” In class that day there was another student, a friend of mine I see not often, who had a pill bottle somewhat prominently displayed on his desk next to his book and phone and whatnot. I think the pills were some kind of anxiety medication, I don’t actually know. I also think that being able to see the pills within his reach somehow made him less likely to need them: He knew help was within hand’s reach so he was less likely to need that help. But she spotted them, and promptly told him to put the pill bottle away. He was either reluctant to do so, or was just moving slower than her patience was willing to tolerate, and so before he could (would?) put them away she verbally prodded him to do what she had asked. She said something like, “No… You need to put those away now please. (nodding her head at him) Really and truly.” I remember feeling glad not to be him and also getting caught on her usage of “really and truly.” It’s safe to say most Americans (and probably most English speakers in general) often don’t consider the difference between the word really and the word truly – unless, perhaps, one of these words randomly hits someone as being more applicable to the emphasis intended or desired. But I think it’s rare and I also think really usually wins out over truly so even when we mean truly we say really.

But the words aren’t the same, are they? Despite any linguistic parallels, they (should) have different meanings. Without actually referencing a dictionary, I’ll suggest that really is mostly synonymous with “very” and truly is synonymous with “actually.” With that difference understood, suddenly the professor’s words make more sense. The student actually (truly) and very much / to a great degree (really) shouldn’t be showing off his pills. Like: Not only don’t do that thing, but also understand that it’s important you don’t do that thing.

He put the pill bottle away.

So how does that story relate at all to the “I love you” stuff from earlier? Well, same difference. It’s about word choice and what you’re actually communicating.

When most people are told, “I love you” what they intend to communicate in return is that they love the person who is loving them. Despite my entire upbringing, what I feel is most appropriate to communicate that is simply, “I love you” in response to having heard it. Further, we employ this linguistic logic in other areas such as greetings. When someone says, “Hello” you respond with an equivalent, right? No one says, “Hello, too!” Instead, we simply say, “Hello” in return. Is something like, “How are you?” ever met with, “I’m well. How are you, too?”

No ma’am. And in reality, the response to “I love you” should probably be only, “I love you.” (See variation #1 above.) The difference I’m getting at, though, is why I’m glad my family and I say it “wrong.” You see, the word too means things like “additionally” and “also.” When you respond with, “I love you, too” you’re saying the equivalent of, “Also do I love you” from which the listener should infer, “This person, in addition to other people, loves me.”

I think it’s a sweet thing to subtly remind people that they are loved by more than the person with whom they are having the exchange and this awareness makes me glad for my family’s habit – even if it’s somewhat accidental. Beyond that sweetness this is an important thing to do.

Do you agree?

Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shanti