Gain prowess through Spiritual Practice and then strive for Hindutva !

Contents


O supporters of Hinduism, instead of practising Hindutva at the emotional level gain prowess through Spiritual Practice and then strive for Hindutva !

Introduction

‘There are many Hindus in our society who strive for Hindutva. They are very proud of Hinduism and are prepared to face any kind of hardships to protect it.They get agitated withHindu-haters and make all possible efforts to prevent harm to Hinduism and to stop denigration of Hindu Deities. What is important here is that, when we work for Hinduism or any other good cause, support from God is absolutely essential. Only then will our mission be successful. Even if we do not succeed due to an unfavourable period of time then our faith in Hinduism remains firm. I am enumerating some points below to show Hindu protagonists the significance of support from God, that is in other words, the importance of undertaking Spiritual Practice. – Sadhika[Jyeshtha Krushna Pratipada (27th June 2010)]

1.1 Ethics without Divine support is like a child deprived of parents

Mere ethics without Divine support is like a child deprived of parents. This means that in this frightful Kaliyug (era of strife) just being good, having good conduct, involvement in a good religious/righteous mission is not sufficient to attain success because the evil acts of evildoers during this period have reached a peak . Cruel evildoers are constantly hatching conspiracies to torment us. So not to prevent harm caused by them and to be able work for Hindutva at all times we need blessings from God and the grace of our Guru (spiritual guide) because finally only God and the Guru can ferry us through a crisis. To achieve that we have to undertake appropriate Spiritual Practice and seek their blessings. This is how we increase our spiritual prowess. [Sanstha and the Hindu Samiti are organisations which give proper guidance on Spiritual Practice ! – Compiler]

1.2 Following Dharma (righteousness) enhances the Sattva component and consequently the spiritual prowess

We do not want Hindutva to be practised at the emotional level. We want it to become our attitude as a result of continuous practice of achar (code of conduct) prescribed in Hinduism. This way Hindutva becomes powerful because by following the principles of Dharma we receive Divine blessings. Hence for all those who wish to participate in the mission of conserving Hindutva there is no alternative to Spiritual Practice , it is a must. Spiritual Practice enhances the Sattva component in you, creating spiritual prowess. This helps you to face any difficult situation in life with Divine protection. Also anti-Hindus and evildoers feel terrorised with the grace of God and they are prevented from harming us.

1.3 Spiritual experiences of being able to achieve impossible tasks with Divine support

You can get spiritual experiences of achieving impossible tasks with Divine support as energy from God is limitless. If we are devoted unto Him then when we call out to Him He rushes to our rescue and takes the task to successful completion. Hence the task is accomplished beyond our expectations. This in turn enhances our devotion unto Him . Actually He gets His own task done with us as mere participants. Yet He showers His grace upon us. In this way by surrendering doership to God if you strive for Hinduism then the mission will become even more expansive.

1.4 The true objective is not working for protection of the Hindu Dharma rather to win the grace of God

Our aim is not to protect the Hindu Dharma; it is to win the grace of God. To carry out a mission for Dharma you need tremendous spiritual prowess. As Saints possess this they can accomplish great missions by their sankalp (resolve) and even their presence. How much strength can we average humans possess and how much can we achieve with that ? Hence if we perform the task with the blessings and guidance from a Saint, we do not claim doership for it and the task is accomplished even more successfully . In addition we also receive Divine grace. Hence instead of working at the emotional level it is necessary to act after contemplation, with spiritual strength .

1.5 Importance of Divine support and grace of Saints !

Let us study a few incidents in the life of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj to understand this .

Slaying of Afzal Khan by Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj

Slaying of Afzal Khan by Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj

A. For two months before the meeting of Afzal Khan and Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj at Pratapgad, Samarth Ramdasswami, his Guru, would offer abhishek (ritualistic bathing with water or milk) to the Linga (Divine Phallus) of Deity Rudra (Shiva) every day at Mahabaleshwar. That protected Shivaji Maharaj and the enemy got killed. This shows that mere planning and expertise in warfare is insufficient. Spiritual strength is also necessary to achieve success.

B. Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj could easily escape from Aurangzeb’s prison because of blessings from two Saints and for his observing achardharma.

C. Merely with the blessings of Saints and the tej (radiance) generated in him due to Spiritual Practice Shivaji Maharaj could defeat the huge Mughal army and establish his own kingdom known as Hindavi Swarajya.

This makes it clear that to fight the cruel evildoers it is not sufficient to have only physical and mental strength or dedication unto a cause. To achieve success in the mission spiritual strength is very much essential .

It is my humble request to all Hindu protagonists to contemplate on this article and commence Spiritual Practice immediately to augment their spiritual prowess so that they can dedicate their lives for the Hindu cause wholeheartedly. I pray unto God and H.H.Doctor to give all Hindus protaganists the strength and wisdom to undertake Spiritual Practice !’

 

Foster spiritual emotion (bhav), not mere emotions for the Nation !

 

Index

 

 

 
 

Introduction

 

Often we feel dejected and at times also become emotional about the scenario of life-threatening acts, poverty and corruption in the Nation. We dream about an ideal Nation; but it only remains a dream.  We do feel intensely for our nation in waves but with passage of time this feeling dies down. Only if we feel bhav towards our Nation then do we feel like doing something to improve the circumstances  in the  country. Here an attempt has been made to explain the meaning of bhav why it is necessary and how to awaken it to some extent. 

Bhav is superior to emotion !

Emotions are perceived at the mental level. Emotion developed spontaneously in response  to a situation is temporary. On the other hand bhav is awakened in the subconscious mind. Though bhav is also generated spontaneously in response to a situation its awareness lasts for a long time. That is why  bhav is superior to mere emotion.

Contemplate on whether you have bhav for the nation by turning inwards!

Feeling dejected about our countrymen suffering due to starvation, the atrocities on our women, Hindu brethren getting killed in communal riots etc and worrying about the pathetic state of the country and wondering when its transformation will occur  are but transient emotions for the country.

  •  
    • Do you ever eat less thinking of those crores of your countrymen who starve ?
    • Have you ever shed tears for the injustice inflicted on your brethren in communal riots?
    • Have you ever felt disgusted towards the comforts and pleasures you are enjoying after knowing about the pitiable condition of the Kashmiri Hindus who were forced to leave Kashmir due to terrorism?

—– if you get such feelings then  you have some amount of bhav for the Nation.

Bhav arises from Sacrifice and Divine support  !

Many mawlas (Shivaji Maharaj’s soldiers) helped Chattrapati Shivaj Maharaj to establish a Hindavi Swarajya.  Every mawla  would hold a tulsi (Holybasil) leaf in one hand and a burning coal in the other and ask Shivaji Maharaj ‘Tell me o king what shall I choose between the basil leaf and  the burning coal to get Swarajya (independence). I shall do as you say.’
The foundation of Hindu culture is  sacrifice . An accomplished state is  a part of the fruit of Hindu culture. So it is but natural  to develop bhav for the Nation through an attitude of sacrifice.
Bhav is a reaction at the  spiritual level. Pure bhav for the Nation can develop only through Divine support . ‘O youth, if you are struggling for the survival of  the Nation then it should accept  the Hindu religious code of conduct completely ’, said Swami Vivekanand. There is total surrender in bhav. Only in total surrender does God bless us. Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj had to face several  obstacles when establishing Hindavi Swarajya but he was able to overcome all of them because of his intense faith in  Deity Bhavanimata and also his righteous conduct .

To develop bhav for the Nation perform your duties for Dharma (religion) or do sadhana !

Only if one has bhav  for the  Nation then  his actions will  be in the interest of the Nation. Though this is an undisputed fact   it is equally true that if you  do something for the  Nation as your duty unto Dharma or simply as sadhana then  you will gradually develop bhav for the Nation. What can you do to achieve  this? Follow the guidance of  Saints who have  deep concern for the Nation, give donations to organisations doing selfless social service for national welfare and above all  become a part of  their mission !

The Desirable Mission of H.H. Dr. of creating social awareness about the Nation

A Saint who is perpetually engaged in the mission of giving spiritual guidance along with  guidance for protecting the Nation, to  society and Himself is  striving for the sake of the Nation incessantly, is H.H. Dr.! Each and everyone of us  thinks about the Nation in some way or the other. H.H.Dr. has undertaken this supreme task of enhancing these thoughts in society, for the last fifteen  years. He started the periodicals of ‘ Prabhat’ to create social awareness by  publishing fiery  articles. He was their editor for a year. Today the recognition that the periodicals are receiving as ‘the Daily expressing the feelings of patriotic Hindus’, is solely due to the merits behind the thoughts of H.H.Dr. ! He wrote Holy texts  on, ‘The Kashmir issue’, ‘The mentality of Pakistan’, ‘Pakistan’s Strategic Superiority over  Bharat’,  ‘The Kargil War’ and ‘Social Upliftment, National Security  and Awareness of Righteousness’, to awaken the Nation.  He has also compiled hundreds of series of articles relating to corruption, journalism, justice, etc. to create social awareness.

The Sanstha and Hindu Samiti are striving to awaken the nation

By founding the Sanstha H.H. Dr. opened the doors of spiritual progress to sadhaks. When guiding them on sadhana He also kindled national pride in them. That is why today Sanstha’s sadhaks organise discourses  on national security, at various places. In schools awareness is created on the Nation through lectures followed by questionnaires to students. Through  street plays, rallies for promoting Dharma, etc. they involve both young and old in this national mission. The Hindu Samiti striving for uniting Hindus and creating awareness plays an equally important role in the mission of national security by launching campaigns  to stop dishonour  of national emblems such as  the national flag, national anthem etc. stopping the fabrication of the map of Bharat, the deliberate changes in history books in school textbooks and the deliberate degradation of freedom fighters and revolutionaries in the textbooks. Through such campaigns,  the Samiti is doing great work for the Nation. That is why participation in the activities of the Hindu Samiti and Sanstha would amount to rendering service unto the Nation.

It will be possible to establish a Divine Kingdom only with bhav

One fostering bhav for  the Nation is a true patriot. An extremely beautiful Divine Kingdom will be established with  the guidance of Saints through such patriots. God is giving you an invaluable opportunity to participate in this mission of his by becoming a patriot. Do not let go of this opportunity !

 

How does pranayam facilitate activation of the kundalini?

Contents


Pranayam

Pranayam is included in Hathayoga. The eight parts of Ashtangyoga (Eight fold Yoga) advocated by Patanjali are 1. Yam (restraints), 2. Niyam (regulations), 3. Asans (postures), 4. Pranayam (controlled breathing), 5. Pratyahar (introversion), 6. Dharana (concentration), 7. Dhyan (meditation) and 8. Samadhi (superconscious state). Pranayam is the fourth part among them.

1. Origin, definition and vital energy

A. The word pranayam (प्राणायाम) is derived from two words pran (प्राण) and ayam (आयाम). Ayam means to regulate or suppress. Pranayam means regulating the vital energies (pran) in the body.

B. The word pranayam is formed from pran (प्राण) + ayam (अयाम). Ayam means to increase. Pranayam means increasing the vital energy.

C. Out of the subtle (subtle means those which cannot be perceived by the five senses, mind and intellect) frequencies in the atmosphere the proportion of the 360 tama predominant frequencies emitted from the earth is 40%. These are gross among the subtle frequencies. The 108 sattva predominant frequencies coming from the ajanaj or the star region (nakshatralok) too are 40% (refer ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 25 – Composition of the Universe). These are most subtle. In pranayam the word ayam is derived from a (to come/to absorb) and yam (continuously). 360 tama frequencies and 108 sattva frequencies are continuously entering the body. The main aim of pranayam is to increase the ability to face these 360 tama frequencies. ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 26 – Man’ provides information on the vital body (prandeha). Acquiring control over that vital body, that is vital energy is itself pranayam.

     The vital energies performing various functions in the body have various names. The main among them are the panchapran (five main units of vital energy) and the panchaupapran (the five sub-units of vital energy). Actually there is only one vital energy but according to its functions they are named as panchapran and panchaupapran. With every breath and thought the total oxygen leaves its position in the Brahmarandhra. During inspiration it descends from the Brahmarandhra and on expiration resumes its place in the Brahmarandhra. So also in the interval between two thoughts it goes to the Brahmarandhra.

D. Out of the nine serpents (navanag) – the nine groups of pure spiritual particles, five serpents move within the body as the five internal energies (five vital energies, panchapran). The remaining four are not present in the body of an average person and do so only with spiritual progress, that is all the principles in the universe (brahmanda) enter the subtle body (pinda).

1.1 Panchapran (the five main units of vital energy)

  • 1. Pran: The act of inspiration and the process of incorporation of oxygen into every cell occur because of the ‘pran’ vital energy. Both, the energy performing these functions and the total vital energy too is called ‘pranshakti’. Hence there is a possibility of confusion in the meaning. To avoid such confusion one should remember the simple rule that when words like pran, apan, udan, etc. are used, in that context it refers to the ‘pran’ energy causing inspiration. Otherwise one should consider it as the total vital energy. The main seat of pran is in the heart.
  • 2. Udan: This energy flows upwards. The act of expiration and speaking occur because of this energy. Actually inspiration is an action and expiration a reaction. Its main site is the throat.
  • 3. Saman: Intestinal movements occur because of this energy. To experience the saman energy place the tip of the middle finger of the right or left hand on the navel, note the experience and then read the following section. The moment the finger touches the navel, inspiration or expiration stops, that is, kumbhak occurs. To activate the kundalini (spiritual energy) movement of the saman energy is required. To achieve that, nadibandha (blocking of the channels) is performed. The energy causing nadibandha is called kilak. Kilak is the energy produced by expulsion of saman energy. Its main seat is the navel.
  • 4. Vyan: Most of the voluntary and involuntary actions in the body (beating of the heart, etc.) occur because of this energy. It has no specific seat and is distributed throughout the body.
  • 5. Apan: Excretory functions of the body such as sweating, urination and defaecation, passing flatus, ejaculation, delivery of a baby, etc. occur due to this energy. Its main site is the anus.

स्‍पर्शान्‌ कृत्‍वा बहिर्बाह्यांश्चक्षुश्चैवान्‍तरे भ्रुवो: ।
प्राणापानौ समौ कृत्‍वा नासाभ्‍यन्‍तरचारिणौ ।। – श्रीमद्‌भगवद्‌गीता ५:२७

Meaning: Rejecting external objects and concentrating the gaze midway between the two eyebrows, sages equalise the pran and apan within the nose, keeping only the Final Liberation (Moksha) as their ultimate target. – Shrimadbhagvadgita 5 : 27.

An offering is made unto these vital energies prior to commencing a meal.

The function of some vital energies in relation to the universe is as follows:

  • Pran: the sun
  • Apan: the earth
  • Saman: the hollow/cavity between the sun and the earth.

1.2 Panchaupapran (the five sub-units of vital energy)

  • 1. Nag: causes belching
  • 2. Kurma: causes blinking
  • 3. Krukal: causes sneezing
  • 4. Devdatta: causes yawning
  • 5. Dhananjay: This energy is spread throughout the body and persists in the individual’s body for sometime even after death.

2. Breathing

2.1 Definition and meaning

Everything that is done to maintain one’s existence and form is called breathing. Breathing starts from the time of conception. The act of absorption of air, water, and food by the body cells is referred to as ‘chay (चय)’ and that of excretion as ‘apachay (अपचय)’. The word chayapachay (चयापचय) is derived from the combination of the words chay and apachay.

2.2 Through the nine openings (navadvars) and the skin

In living organisms, tama and sattva predominant frequencies, that is energy enters and leaves the body through the nine openings and the skin. These nine openings are also called the nine centres (navachakras).

The nine openings in
the body and the skin
The amount of
energy entering
the body in all
organisms %
The amount of
energy expelled
by the body in
all organisms %
1. The opening Number    
   a. Eyes 2 2 2
   b. Ears 2 2 1
   c. Nostrils (through the
      medium of air)
2 64 50
   d. Mouth (through the
      medium of food and
      water)
1 30 2
   e. Penis 1 1 1
   f. Anus 1 1 1
2. Skin 43
Total 9 100 100

2.3 Account of the energy

  Amount of energy %
Average
person
Saint of
70% level
Saint of
90% level
1. Input      
   A. Absorption of energy from
        outside the body
     
      1. Through air (nose) 50 30 5
      2. Through water (mouth) 20 10 5
      3. Through food (mouth) 20 10 5
      4. Through eyes, ears,
          penis and anus
10 10 5
   B. Energy produced in
        the body
0 40 70
Total accumulated energy 100 100 90
2. Output / Expenditure      
   A. Use of energy for oneself 10 5 2
   B. Release of energy 90 50 20
Total accumulated energy 100 55 22
3. Accumulated energy =
    Input – expenditure
0 45 68

With practice of pranayam since less energy is spent on oneself it could result in accumulation of energy.

2.4 Breathing in unison (samashvasan)

The expulsion and absorption of energy by all the cells in the body simultaneously, is called breathing in unison. Such breathing occurs because of pranayam. As a result of breathing in unison since unified energy is used, less energy is utilised and thus it accumulates in the body. Similarly if one synchronises one’s breathing with that of any person or animal then one can come to know his or its thoughts and emotions. So also one can control him. These two can be achieved with pranayam.

3. Types

There are several types of pranayams. Information on them can be obtained from a number of books on the subject. Since information on pranayam only from the spiritual viewpoint is discussed here all the types have not been explained in detail.

Slow breathing [is referred to as purak, abhyantarvrutti (attitude) or Brahma], holding it for sometime in the chest [is called purak kumbhak or antar kumbhak, stambhavrutti (pillar attitude) or Vishnu], slow expiration [is called rechak, bahyavrutti (external attitude) or Mahesh] and finally holding the breath for sometime (is called rechak kumbhak or bahya kumbhak). Kumbhak not related to internal or external is called ‘keval (simple) kumbhak’. When kumbhak is practised controlling one’s breath it is called ‘sahit kumbhak’. When kumbhak occurs automatically, without any effort it is called ‘simple kumbhak’.

3.1 Focussing one’s attention on the breath

On an average one breathes 21,600 times per day. Focussing one’s attention on the breath is considered as continuous chanting (ajapajap) of the ‘So’ham (सोऽहं)’ (He is I) mantra. Continuous chanting is that which occurs without one’s own efforts.

3.2 Anulom-vilom pranayam

The word anukaran (अनुकरण) is formed from two words ‘anu (अनु) + karan (करण). ‘Anu’ means that which is already existing and ‘karan’ means an action. With reference to this, anulom means the act of breathing as one usually does. In ‘pratilom (प्रतिलोम)’, ‘prati (प्रति)’ means opposite and ‘pratilom’ means doing the opposite of inspiration, that is expiration.

There is no need to contemplate on how many seconds purak, kumbhak and rechak take because as one reduces the breath gradually, after some years one can practise kumbhak for a maximum period of time. This is the very motive of pranayam. Generally, the duration of inspiration is thrice that of expiration. One should try to equalise the two. In the final stage, the duration of expiration should be a little more than that of inspiration.

A. Chandranulom (Chandrabhed): In this, both the inspiration and expiration are done through the left nostril [through the moon (Chandra) or Ida channel]. The right nostril is closed with the thumb of the right hand. In the beginning one should perform nine such rounds (avartans). Later as one gets habituated to them one should perform twenty-five to thirty rounds. At such times the duration of purak and rechak should be equal. When performing them one should chant a long Omkar in one’s mind.

B. Suryanulom (Suryabhed): In this, both the inspiration and expiration are done through the right nostril [through the sun (Surya) or Pingala channel]. The ring or little finger of the right hand is used to close the left nostril.

The benefits of these types of pranayam are as follows. Usually breathing occurs as follows. Breathing occurs for about an hour through the right nostril. Then for two to four minutes through both the nostrils. Then again through the left nostril for an hour and later for two to four minutes through both. Then again through the right nostril. This cycle goes on continuously. By practising anulom-vilom pranayam one gradually gets used to breathing through both nostrils. This facilitates the opening of the Sushumna channel.

3.3 Antar (internal) kumbhak pranayam

The act: Slow inspiration (purak) – holding the breath for sometime (kumbhak) – slow expiration (rechak).

3.4 Bahya (external) kumbhak pranayam

The act : slow inspiration (purak) – slow expiration (rechak) – holding the breath for sometime (kumbhak).

Besides getting habituated to surviving without oxygen the benefits of pranayam are obtained faster with bahya kumbhak than with antar kumbhak. However the risk in pranayam is higher with bahya kumbhak.

Bandha and kumbhak: ‘In the science of Hathayoga some bandhas from among the types of postures (asans) have been mentioned. They are yogabandha, mahabandha, mahavedha, uddiyan, mulbandha, jalandharbandha, etc. While holding the breath during kumbhak one needs to close some openings out of the nine openings in the body. These yogic bandhas prove very useful for that purpose. A bandha is also useful in directing vital energy from a specific part of the body into another. If one wishes to acquire mastery over pranayam then one should practise bandhas.’(1) Kumbhak (breath holding) performed without bandha may cause headaches, a paunch, etc. Information on various bandhas is given in ‘Chapter 24 : Asan, Bandha and Mudra’.

3.5 Sammishra pranayam

The act : slow inspiration (purak) – holding the breath for sometime (kumbhak) – slow expiration (rechak) – holding the breath for sometime (kumbhak).

3.6 Shuddhikriya pranayam

A. Kapalbhati: Kapal (कपाळ) means the forehead and bhati (भाती) to illuminate. Since the cavities in the bones of the nose and forehead are purified by it, this type of pranayam is called kapalbhati (कपालभाती). It is performed by inspiration followed by sudden contraction of the abdomen, expiration and then inspiration while relaxing the abdomen.

B. Bhasrika: Bhasrika means the bellows of the blacksmith. This is a mixture of kapalbhati and ujjayi pranayams.

C. Normal breathing, kapalbhati and bhasrika: In normal breathing, inspiration is active while expiration is passive. In bhasrika both inspiration and expiration are active. In kapalbhati, as usual the inspiration is active but expiration is more active. Generally, the rate of respiration is sixteen to eighteen breaths per minute. In both, bhasrika and kapalbhati the rate rises to fifty to hundred per minute. There is a higher chance of hyperventilation with carbon dioxide when performing bhasrika rather than with kapalbhati.

3.7 Nadishuddhi (Nadishodhan) – Purification of channels

Nadishuddhi can be done in two ways as follows.

  • 1. Samanu – that is by chanting a bijamantra
  • 2. Nirmanu – that is by some physical action without chanting a bijamantra.

A. Technique

  • 1. Close the right nostril with the right thumb.
  • 2. Breathe in very slowly, silently and regularly through the left nostril (purak).
  • 3. Close the left nostril with the little finger and / or the ring finger.
  • 4. Hold the breath for as long as possible without effort (purak kumbhak). (Some do not advocate holding the breath.)
  • 5. Remove the thumb of the right hand from the right nostril and breathe out very slowly, silently and gradually through the right nostril (rechak).
  • 6. Hold the breath for as long as possible, without effort (rechak kumbhak). (Some do not advocate holding of the breath.)
  • 7. Breathe in slowly, silently and gradually through the right nostril.
  • 8. Close the right nostril with the right thumb.
  • 9. Hold the breath for as long as possible without effort. (Some do not advocate holding the breath.)
  • 10. Remove the little and/or ring finger and breathe out very slowly, silently and gradually through the left nostril.
  • 11. Do not breathe in for as long as possible without effort. (Some do not advocate holding of the breath.)

This is called one round (avartan) of nadishuddhi. Inspiration and expiration are acts to be performed steadily in one rhythm. In the beginning, one should perform seven to eight rounds of nadishuddhi practising the steps from numbers 2 to 11.

B. Benefits

  • Generally breathing occurs as follows. Inspiration and expiration takes three to four seconds. Hence respiration occurs fifteen to twenty times in one minute. When practising pranayam both the acts of inspiration and expiration should be performed slowly, that is, both should take ten to fifteen seconds instead of three to four seconds each. Initially no matter how hard a seeker tries to breathe slowly, the lungs get filled with air within five to seven seconds of breathing through both the nostrils. However if one tries to breathe in slowly through one nostril then it takes ten to fifteen seconds for the lungs to get filled up with air. The same holds good for expiration. No matter how slowly one expires through both the nostrils it takes atleast five to seven seconds. On the contrary, if one expires slowly through one nostril, it takes ten to fifteen seconds. Thus breathing occurs slowly. Hence when practising pranayam initially, to develop the habit of breathing extremely slowly, this technique is useful.
  • Ida and Pingala [refer ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 38 – Path of Activation of Spiritual Energy (Kundaliniyoga).] This technique is useful for regulating the energy flow through these channels and to facilitate the activation of the Sushumna channel. By practising this pranayam one is also able to activate either the Ida or Pingala, as desired.

C. Limitations: Once one is able to breathe slowly one should stop using the nirmanu technique, since it involves the movement of hands and consequently the mind cannot concentrate fully.

D. Anulom-vilom and nadishuddhi pranayam

  Anulom-vilom
pranayam
Nadishuddhi
pranayam
1. Breathing extremely slowly Efforts are required Occurs naturally
2. Increasing or decreasing the
    sattva and raja components
    according to the requirement
Impossible Possible
3. Altering the flow of vital energy
    through the IdaPingala
    channels so as to facilitate
    worldly activities.
Impossible Possible
4. Obstacles in meditation due to
    movement of fingers
Meditation becomes
easier since there
are no movements
of fingers
Possible

E. Other techniques

  • When inspiring through the left nostril utter the vayubijamantrayam’ in the mind, sixteen times. Do not expire till it is chanted sixty-four times and after thirty-two times expire through the right nostril. Later when inspiring through the right nostril chant the agnibijamantraram’ in the mind sixteen times. Do not expire till it is chanted sixty-four times and expire slowly through the left nostril after chanting it thirty-two times.
  • When inspiring through the left nostril chant the vahnibijamantratham’ sixteen times. Do not expire till the vayu bijamantrayam’ is chanted sixty-four times. Then chanting ‘lam’ the amrutbija or pruthvibijamantra thirty-two times gradually expire through the right nostril. Then when inspiring chant ‘lam’, when holding the breath ‘yam’ and when expiring ‘tham’ in the mind in the same proportion as given above.
  • Inspire till Lord Brahma’s bijamantraa’ is chanted slowly, sixteen times in the mind. After inspiration chant Vishnu’s bijamantraou’ sixty-four times. When expiring chant Shiva’s bijamantram’ thirty-two times.

In the above three techniques the proportion of purak, kumbhak and rechak is 1:4:2.

3.8 Shitalikaran pranayam

This pranayam overcomes anxiety, stress and helps in keeping the mind calm along with physical relaxation. It also increases the immunity of the respiratory system against disease. Out of these pranayams, sadant pranayam is useful for those suffering from pyorrhoea (pus in the gums).

A. Sitkari: First expire. Then turning the tongue inwards press its tip below the upper teeth. Hold the lips as they remain when one is smiling. Cavities are created between the edges of the lips and the twisted tongue. Inspire air through these cavities making the sound ‘si’. Once the chest is filled with air, stop purak, close the mouth and do rechak. Repeat this four to five times.

B. Shitali: First put the tongue out a little, from in between the lips, and lift it on both sides. Thus the tongue assumes the shape of a canoe. Then compress the tip of the tongue with the lips, creating a cavity there. Gradually inhale air through this cavity. The air passing over the tongue becomes cool and enters the chest. After purak is complete close the mouth and do rechak through the nose. This constitutes one round (avartan). Perform three to four such rounds.

C. Sadant: First press the teeth against each other and mould the lips, as if smiling. Then inhale air slowly, making a sound through the space between the teeth. When inspiration stops, perform rechak through the nose. This is one round. Perform three to four such rounds.

3.9 Mudra pranayam: Bhagshaha shvasan (breathing with various parts of the body)

‘This is a type of breathing to be done before doing pranayam. This breathing proves useful to facilitate proper breathing and to make full use of the functional capacity of the lungs.

A. Adham (breathing through the abdomen): Perform the chit mudra. Sit erect either in sukhasan (the ease posture), vajrasan (the adamant posture) or padmasan (the lotus posture ). Take a deep, slow breath (purak). Let the abdomen relax slowly during inspiration. Hold the breath only for a second (antar kumbhak) and then contracting the abdomen gradually expire (rechak). Before taking the next breath, hold it again for a second in this state itself (bahya kumbhak). Then gradually relaxing the abdomen perform purak. Continue this slow cycle of inspiration-expiration. Do not give jerks or apply pressure. Let the breathing be continuous and regular.

    When performing purak since the abdomen is relaxed, the diaphragm between the chest and abdomen is reduced. As a result, a cavity develops in the lungs (specially the lower zones). Naturally the external air does not reach these zones. Due to the rhythmic movement between the abdomen and diaphragm, the abdominal organs receive equal massage and the blood circulation too increases.

B. Madhyam (chest breathing): Perform the chinmay mudra. The posture adopted should be the same as above. When performing purak instead of the abdomen, relax the chest to a greater extent but gradually. When performing rechak contract it slowly. Do not allow abdominal movements to occur. With this type of breathing, air enters the middle zone of the lungs.

C. Adya (breathing with the help of shoulders): Perform the adi mudra with the hands. The posture adopted should be the same as above. When performing purak slowly raise the shoulders, anteriorly. When performing rechak lower them posteriorly.

     Raising the shoulders creates a cavity in the upper zone of the lungs and the air inhaled enters that part. Otherwise since one’s respiration is superficial that part of the lung is not used much.

D. Yogic breathing: Perform the Brahma mudra with the hands. “Yogic breathing” is a combination of the above three types of breathing. Breathing should be done first with the help of the abdomen, then the chest and finally with the help of the shoulders. During expiration too the same organs should be contracted in the same sequence. This breathing should be performed calmly and regularly without strain on any part or tightening of the face.’(2)

3.10 Other pranayams

A. Ujjayi

  • ‘Expire completely and wait for a moment. Then start inspiring slowly through both the nostrils. Let the soft palate feel the air entering. When breathing let the glottis close the food pipe and wind pipe equally so that the air flowing through the half closed wind pipe makes a hissing “s” sound.
  • Making a gesture of swallowing, bend the neck and let the breath be held automatically. Maintaining this state for some moments make attempts to be aware of the breath held below the throat.
  • Then keeping the glottis half open and making the hissing sound “s” let the air be exhaled through the left nostril.
  • Let the glottis open completely and expel all the air.
  • This constitutes one round (avartan): Do 4 to 5 such rounds.

    In the other types of ujjayi, inspiration-expiration is done through each nostril. The importance in this type is attributed to decreasing the respiratory rate by compressing the palate upwards.’(3)

B. Bhramari

  • ‘Inhale through both the nostrils and let the air circulate in the mouth imitating the sound of a drone. Let the entire body feel the vibrations generated. Then let the breath stop automatically.
  • While exhaling, mimic the melodious sound of a female honeybee. Now it becomes easier. Wait after exhalation for a second. Repeat these rounds several times.

About bhramari it is said: “By practising pranayam this way the yogi experiences Bliss beyond description !” ’ (4)

3.11 According to the day and night

From sunrise to sunset one should inspire through the left nostril and expire through the right. From sunset to sunrise one should inspire through the right nostril and expire through the left.

During the day, when there is sunlight one should inspire through the left nostril so that the moon channel (Chandra nadi) is activated and at night, in the absence of the sun one should inspire through the right nostril so that the sun channel (Surya nadi) is operational. Thus if one performs acts contrary to the environment then the effects of the environment on oneself are reduced. Also with breathing through one nostril throughout the day one gets used to slow breathing, quickly.

3.12 Sanhita pranayam: Sagarbha and agarbha (nirgarbha) pranayams

The pranayam done chanting a mantra is called sagarbha and that done without a mantra is called agarbha (nirgarbha). The mantra is naturally chanted mentally because if done loudly then one will only be able to expire.

A. The three step (tripad) Gayatri: In this, Om (ॐ) appears twice as given below.

ॐ भूर्भुव: स्‍व: ।
ॐ तत्‌ सवितु: वरेण्‍यं भर्गो देवस्‍य धीमहि ।
ॐ धियो योन: प्रचोदयात्‌ ।

Om bhurbhuvaha svaha.
Om tat savituhu varenyam bhargo devasya dhimahi.
Om dhiyo yonaha prachodayat.

     In the three step Gayatri if one mentally chants the first step during inspiration, the second when holding the breath and the third during expiration then pranayam with purak, kumbhak and rechak in the proportion of l : 4 : 2, too occurs.

B. The four step (chatushpad) Gayatri: In this four step Gayatri besides the three Oms of the three step Gayatri, the fourth is added after ‘prachodayat’. Due to this fourth Om, kumbhak (breath holding) after rechak (expiration) also occurs.

Reference:

[1]. Vol 6. Pg. 33 First Edition, Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh. Publisher : Pandit Mahadevshastri Joshi, Secretary, Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh Mandal, 410 Shanivarpeth, Pune 411 030.

Yoga – Asane, Pranayam, Mudra, Kriya. First edition, June 1996. Publisher : V.N.Limaye, Sachiv – Vivekanand Kendra Prakashan, Marathi Section, 1890, Sadashiv Peth, Natubag, Pune – 411 030.
[2]. Pg. 53                  [3]. Pg.56
[4]. Pg. 58.

 

Righteousness – key to control desires

Contents


Control Over Sexual Desire

Generally that what is referred to as intercourse is the external union. This chapter is in relation to this union. The real union however, is that of the embodied soul (jiva) with The Supreme God (Shiva); it is the internal union.

1. Universal Sexuality

A. Sexual intercourse (sambhog): In ‘samyak bhogayati (सम्‍यक्‌ भोगयति)’, samyak (सम्‍यक्‌) means maintaining a balance and bhog [bhagaha (भग:)] means radiance. Thus sexual intercourse (sambhog) means that by means of which one maintains an equilibrium and acquires the experience of radiance. Sexual intercourse is thus any act performed with the motive of creation. The process of preparing a medicine (rasayan) by combining two chemicals is also called sambhog.

B. An universal sacrificial fire (vishvayadnya): A sacrificial fire (yadnya) is any process through which something is generated after offering an oblation in it. Sexual intercourse is the sacrificial fire of universal creation. The process of universal creation started through the vishvayadnya of the completely nude Earth and God and it still continues. Since sexual intercourse is a symbol of creation it is considered to be pure. In the universe, sexual intercourse goes on everywhere, continuously. The union (sambhog) of the air in a room and the rotating fan produces the offspring, breeze. The introduction of sacrificial offerings of radiance in the form of semen from the penis into the sacrificial pot of the fire (in the form) of the vagina is sambhog (sexual intercourse). Since there is generation of progeny from it, the vagina is called mahabhagoshtha or mahabhag and the uterus is called the garbha region (garbhalok).

2. The sex life of an animal, man and a progressed seeker or a saint

A. ‘There is a vast difference in sexual attitudes between man and other animals. In animals, intercourse occurs only during the fertile period (rutukal) and never during pregnancy, hence untimely ejaculation does not occur, and physical fitness never fails. The Supreme God created the Vedas in the same way as a father aware of the lamentable state of man arising from this relationship, wholeheartedly preaches essential knowledge to his son.’(1)

B. Since there is only physical union, intercourse in animals is in an unevolved state. In man however, it is evolved since along with the physical body there is union of the mind as well. Only this kind of intercourse has the right to be called ‘human intercourse’. Intercourse with a prostitute or without union of minds, is intercourse between animals.

C. When a progressed seeker or a saint has sexual intercourse, along with the body and mind the embodied soul (jiva) too is involved in it. There the emotion is that of surrender. Hence in that intercourse one may experience Bliss (Brahmanand). (Surrender is the preparedness to forget one’s existence, as otherwise each one struggles for one’s independent existence.) An embodied soul whose spiritual practice has been arrested (an evolved soul) enters the product of conception of such an intercourse.

3. Why is sexual desire the most powerful among all desires?

The table given below compares sexual desire and other desires. From this one will realise why sexual desire is the most powerful of all desires.

  Other desires Sexual desire
1. The sense organ Mostly, only one sense
organ fulfills a desire
e.g. desire to eat a
jalebi (an Indian sweet)
is satisfied by the
tongue
Most of the sense
organs are involved in
the fulfillment of this
desire e.g. the eyes,
ears, tongue, lips,
(skin), nose, etc.
2. Unfulfillment Less often Most often
3. Causes of unfulfillment    
   A. Dependence on another
     person for fulfillment of
     the desire
Absent Present
   B. Social inhibitions Absent e.g. a jalebi can
be eaten anywhere
Present e.g. one
cannot have sex
anywhere
   C. Opportunities for
     fulfillment
More Less

The analysis of happiness experienced at orgasm is given in ‘Science of Spirituality : Vol. 1B – Spirituality’ under ‘Happiness and Bliss’.

A quote from the Yogavasishtha (5.52.21) says

कुरङ्‌गालिपतङ्‌गेभमीनास्‍त्‍वेकैकशो हता: ।
सर्वैर्युक्‍तैरनर्थैस्‍तु व्‍याप्‍तस्‍याज्ञ कुत: सुखम्‌ ।

    Meaning: (Sage Uddalak preaches to Adnyachitta) sense objects such as words, speech, etc. are so disastrous that those embodied souls attached to a particular object like the deer, bumble-bee, kite, elephant and fish get destroyed. Then is it astonishing that man who gets engrossed in all these five objects is wrought with tragedy? How will he be happy?

Since man has intense sexual desire the Manusmruti (2.215) says

मात्रा स्‍वस्रा दुहित्रा वा न विविक्‍तासनो भवेत्‌ ।
बलवानिन्‍द्रियग्रामो विव्‍दांसमपि कर्षति ।।

     Meaning: A man should never sleep on the same bed or sit on the same seat along with his mother, sister or daughter because attraction of the sense organs is so strong that it could drive even a great scholar towards them.

4. Types of sexual desire

Good: Good sexual desire is not bad, instead is laudable, as it is necessary for procreation. Hence, the deity of sexual desire is called a deity, Kamadev and not an enemy.

Bad: Sexual desire in illicit relationships, rape, etc. is bad.

5. Benefits of acquiring control over sexual desire

One will agree that it is necessary to gain control over bad sexual desire but it will puzzle one as to why one should acquire control over good sexual desire. It is answered as follows:

A. The table below shows the percentage of obstacles various sexual acts pose to spiritual practice.

Sexual act Obstacle in spiritual
practice %
1. Thinking about a woman / man 0.5
2. Masturbation after a sexual thought 2
3. Exhibiting sex organs to others 5
4. Reciprocal masturbation 10
5. Intercourse due to other’s wish (parechcha) 30
6. Intercourse due to one’s own wish (svechcha) 100*

* 100% obstacle means loss of five turns of chanting of a mala (rosary) done with spiritual emotion (bhav).

B. Whatever be the motive of the sexual desire, the impression that ‘fulfillment of sexual desire means happiness’ develops in the subconscious mind and to be able to experience that happiness again and again, sexual desire gets aroused. Thus it hinders the speed of traversing from happiness to Bliss, that is spiritual progress.

C. By avoiding sexual pleasure not only is one able to control sexual desire but also the energy and time required for it is prevented from being wasted. This energy and time can be utilised benevolently, to make spiritual progress. The energy utilised in sexual intercourse is greater than in any other physical activity. Even modern science has proved this.

D. If short lasting happiness is experienced continuously then there will be no time left to devote to the study (spiritual practice) of everlasting happiness (Bliss). If one restricts the experiencing of object pleasure then one gets time for the study (spiritual practice) of unlimited happiness (Bliss). To achieve this while experiencing happiness within the limits of Righteousness (Dharma), one should remain more and more bound by limitations.

E. Even a drop of semen ejaculated has the potential to create an embodied soul (jiva) laden with divine consciousness (chaitanya). So, instead of ejaculating it if it is retained in the body then imagine how much divine consciousness the body will acquire.

F.  सुगंधो योगिनो देहे जायते बिंदुधारणात्‌ ।।
     यावद्‌ बिंदु: स्‍थिरो देहे तावत्‍कालभयं कुत: ।।१।।
     एवं संरक्षयेद्‌ बिंदुं मृत्‍युं जयति योगवित्‌ ।।
     मरणं बिंदुपातेन जीवनं बिंदुधारणात्‌ ।।२।। – योगप्रदीपिका

     Meaning: If the semen remains constant then strength of the body builds up, steadiness is achieved and there is no fear of life. Hence yogis conserve semen and win over death. Seminal loss means death and its conservation is the best possible way of attaining immortality.
                                                                  – Yogapradipika

6. Methods of acquiring control over sexual desire

‘Once Baba asked Shrikrushna, “Supposing I get attracted to a woman and the outcome is bad then is it my fault? O Lord, is it not You who have given me that desire?” Shrikrushna responded, “Yes, the fault is yours. Though the bad thought entered your mind you did not make use of the good intellect bestowed upon you. This is your fault”.’(2)

Some people feel that desire may decline after its fulfillment. For example one day if one devours jalebis till one is fed up, then from that day onwards one will never feel like eating jalebis again. However, the possibility of this occurrence is just one in one lakh. Hence, saying that one will acquire control over sexual desire by experiencing sexual pleasure is unreasonable. Therefore –

न जातु काम: कामानामुपभोगेन शाम्‍यति ।
हविषा कृष्‍णवर्त्‍मेव भूय एवाभिवर्धते ।। – श्रीमद्‌भागवत ९.१९.१४

According to this quote, from Shrimadbhagvat (9:19:14) if one continues to obtain gratification instead of the desire decreasing, it keeps increasing just like a fire which burns even more brilliantly after pouring clarified butter (ghee) into it.

The various methods of acquiring control over sexual desire are given below.

6.1 According to the Path of Action (Karmayoga)

A. Preventing arousal of sexual desire

द्रष्‍टा दृश्‍यवशात्‌ बद्ध: ।

     Meaning: Drashta (द्रष्‍टा) means the observer, drushyavashat (दृश्‍यवशात्‌) means because of the vision and baddhaha (बद्ध:) means being entrapped in bondage. Hence if a scene arousing sexual desire is present then the seeker will get entrapped in it. If not, then the possibility of sexual desire being aroused is less. However, usually one cannot have control over external scenes.

If a stimulus arousing sexual desire reaches the mind through the five senses, then there is a possibility of it being aroused. To prevent this from happening one should block one’s sense organs from receiving sexual stimuli. This itself is called pratyahar. It is well-known that Lakshman always looked at Sita’s feet. H.H. Saint’s Guru, H.H. Swami, never looked at women. When speaking to women He would fix His gaze on the tip of His nose. There is a rule in the Swaminarayan sect that male seekers should not remain in the proximity of women; the reason for this is the same.

B. Decreasing sexual activity stepwise: In context to acquiring control over sexual desire, first let us understand the stages in sexual desire and their fulfillment. In adolescence, a boy gets sexual desire for different women. Later, when he falls in love or marries a girl, sexual desire for only one woman is aroused instead of for many, or sexual activity is performed with only one woman. In view of reducing sexual activity with one’s wife, the scriptures state that one should not indulge in sexual activity on various auspicious days. As activity decreases, automatically desire too decreases. It is for this very reason that after entering the stage of the retired householder (vanaprasthashram) from that of the married householder (gruhasthashram), sexual activity is completely forbidden.

C. Path of Deliberate Rigour (Hathayoga): Sexual desire is of two types – voluntary and involuntary. By acquiring progressive control over acts such as breathing and blinking by doing spiritual practices such as pranayam and tratak respectively, one can acquire control over involuntary sexual desire. As a result, one can also acquire control over voluntary sexual desire.

D. Observing celibacy (brahmacharya): Brahmacharya (ब्रह्मचर्य) is derived from two words Brahman (ब्रह्म), towards Brahman and charya (चर्य), to walk. Thus it means going (from happiness) towards Bliss, because Brahman is Blissful. In the literal sense celibacy is applicable to all seekers, but conventionally it refers to a seeker who does spiritual practice avoiding the experience of sexual pleasure, since adolescence.

When defining brahmacharya a quote states that ‘ब्रह्मचर्याणां 
सर्वावस्‍थासु मनोवाक्‍कायकर्मभि: सर्वत्र मैथुनत्‍याग: ।’ meaning the sacrifice of intercourse in all states of the body, mind and speech is known as celibacy.

स्‍मरणं कीर्तनं केली श्रवणं गुह्यभाषणम्‌ ।
संकल्‍पोऽध्‍यवसायश्च क्रियानिष्‍पत्ति एव च ।
एतद्‌ मैथुनं अष्‍टांगं प्रवदन्‍ति मनैषिणा: ।

Meaning: 1. Thinking of a woman, 2. Description of her qualities, 3. Playing games with her, 4. Listening to her talk, 5. Speaking to her when alone, 6. Wishing to acquire her, 7. Trying to acquire her and 8. Actual intercourse are the eight types of sexual intercourse.

Hence a seeker should not indulge in any of the above activities. A seeker’s celibacy is destroyed by anyone of the above eight sexual acts. A married householder’s celibacy however is destroyed only by the actual sexual act. The more one progresses towards the sattva component the more are the restrictions.

‘A man should indulge in sexual activity for procreation only with his wife during the rutu period (on ten days excluding the first four days of menses), excluding the day and the three hours of the night (prahar), in his own home. With this behaviour celibacy is retained, steadiness develops and healthy and virtuous progeny is born.’ (3)

The holy texts state that a householder experiencing sexual pleasure only once a month can be considered a celibate.

When performing purashcharan (reading of holy texts, chanting of a mantra) it is essential to observe celibacy. During the recitation of the Gayatri purashcharan, periodic reading (parayan) of the Shri Gurucharitra, etc. along with the one performing the purashcharan, his wife, priest and other close acquaintances too should observe celibacy.

E. Emulating saints: Since there is a possibility that a seeker’s mind may wander he should follow the above rules. Some people are puzzled as to why saints too behave in that way. The answer is as follows:

  • One of the objectives of a saint is to set a good example to to seekers and His devotees. If the Guru looks at women, then a seeker in the primary stage will think ‘the Guru does not practise what He preaches’. Such thoughts may reduce his faith in the Guru.
  • ‘Question: Swami, why do You always look down?

    Answer: I am looking at Lord Rama’s image within Me !’

6.2 According to the Path of Devotion (Bhaktiyoga)

To prevent arousal of sexual desire due to sensations from the five sense organs one should develop the attitude of reacting to every sensation as if it were a sensation in relation to God. For example if one hears a song of one pining for her lover (like ‘when will my eyes meet yours O beloved?’), one should think or imagine that one is pining for God. Desires are destroyed by devotion alone and not by mantras. Destruction means its conversion to spiritual love. One cannot decipher whether love is erotic or spiritual, hence even great people sometimes falter. Spiritual love means love for the woman / man, devoid of desire.

If one attempts to see God in every individual then sexual desire does not get aroused.

6.3 According to the Path of Knowledge (Dnyanyoga)

One should think that everything one sees is Brahman.

6.4 According to the technique of autosuggestion

Refer to the technique of autosuggestions in ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 3 – Practice of Spirituality’.

A. To prevent sexual thoughts from entering the mind the autosuggestions to be given are ‘I will continuously think only about spiritual practice, for example ‘whenever I am not talking to anyone or thinking about a useful task, I will start chanting……’.

B. Using ‘the psychofeedback technique’ the suggestions that may be used are as follows :

  • ‘Whenever I get sexual thoughts I will become aware of them and will start thinking about spiritual practice’ can be given. Mostly the suggestion begins to take effect within three to four months.
  • If after three to four months there is still no effect with the above suggestion then give the following suggestion : ‘Whenever I get sexual thoughts I will become aware of them and pinch myself hard’. By using this technique, the usual impression that ‘sexual thoughts mean happiness’ is replaced by ‘sexual thoughts mean pain’ in the subconscious mind. Hence, sexual thoughts start decreasing.

C. To erase the association from the subconscious mind that sexual activity means happiness, the following suggestions can be given:

‘During sexual intercourse, specially during orgasm, thoughts about spiritual practice (e.g. chanting) will continue in my mind’. With such a suggestion when one does not derive happiness from sexual activity, eventually sexual thoughts start decreasing.

D. Imagery in a hypnotic trance : Using this technique of autosuggestion, one can give a suggestion like, ‘when walking on the road I was not distracted by beautiful women passing by or the exciting posters as I was thinking about spiritual practice or chanting’.

E. Thoughts regarding sexual activity : If one thinks about sexual activity with someone with whom it is impossible, then since the sexual act cannot be performed, naturally the gratification obtained at orgasm is not obtained. This facilitates reduction of sexual desire. To accomplish this, one can give suggestions like, ‘when masturbating instead of fantasizing that I am having sex with my spouse (lover), I will imagine that I am having sex with the woman / man I saw in the picture’. With such suggestions sexual desire for the spouse starts decreasing. Since it is impossible to indulge in sexual activity with the person in the picture, the overall sexual desire starts decreasing.

In brief, in most people, ‘in childhood there is no sexual desire -> later, sexual desire for many women / men develops -> more sexual desire for only one woman / man develops -> sexual activity is performed with only one woman / man. If one goes exactly in the reverse direction stepwise, that is sexual activity with only one woman / man -> more sexual desire for only one woman / man -> sexual desire for many women / men -> no sexual desire, then it is possible to acquire control over sexual desire. However, those who consider even thinking of another woman / man as sinful, should make use of other suggestions instead of these.

F. To increase the effectiveness of the other paths, the concepts from the respective path can be given as autosuggestions to impress them upon the mind. This facilitates their acceptance, for example :

  • According to the Path of Knowledge, to actually experience the concept that ‘everything that I see is Brahman’ this sentence should constantly be remembered as an autosuggestion.
  • To decrease the attraction for another’s body if the thought that ‘the body is just a mass of flesh, excreta and urine’ is impressed upon the mind through autosuggestions then sexual desire declines rapidly.

G. The following table shows how one can gain stepwise control over sexual desire. Going to the number, higher than the one applicable to oneself, by giving suggestions to oneself means completing one stage.

  • If the numbers 1, 16, 31 and 46 are applicable to one then one should give suggestions to oneself so as to achieve the motives under numbers 2, 17, 32 and 47. As a result, the frequency of those activities starts decreasing.
  • If it is not possible for one to reduce the frequency of the activities under numbers 1, 16, 31and 46 one should give auto-suggestions so as to achieve the motives under numbers 6, 21, 36 and 51. Hence even though the frequency of sexual activity does not decrease there is a qualitative improvement in the activity. For example, if instead of number 1 one is able to act according to number 6 then though the frequency of sexual activity is once or twice a week, it is only with one’s spouse instead of different women / men.
  Once or
twice a
week
Once or
twice a
month
5-6 times
a year
Only once
in several
years
1. Sexual intercourse        
    Different women/men 1 2 3 4
    Own spouse (wife/husband) 6 7 8 9
    Others (specify) 11 12 13 14
2. Sexual desire        
    Different women/men 16 17 18 19
    Own spouse (wife/husband) 21 22 23 24
    Others (specify) 26 27 28 29
3. Fantacy during masturbation        
    Different women/men 31 32 33 34
    Own spouse (wife/husband) 36 37 38 39
    Others (specify) 41 42 43 44
4. Experiencing orgasm when
    fantasizing about sex
       
    Different women/men 46 47 48 49
    Own spouse (wife/husband) 51 52 53 54
    Own spouse with someone
    else
56 57 58 59
    Any women with any man 61 62 63 64
    A nude woman/man 66 67 68 69
    A woman/man 71 72 73 74
    Vague 76 77 78 79
5. Noctural emissions        
    Ejaculation without being
    aware of the dream
81 82 83 84
    Realising that ejaculation
    had occurred, the next day
86 87 88 89
6. Others 91 92 93 94

6.5 Following Righteousness (Dharma)

The general tendency of people is to behave well with one who makes them happy. Average people tend to call a person who behaves nicely with them, good. Keeping exactly this secret of the attitude of an average person in mind, the code of the married householder has been framed. Moreover this secret itself lays the foundation of the religious code of the married householder’s life. The furthest limit of worldly happiness is sex. Hence in the Ayurveda intercourse is called the seat of Bliss (Anandsthan). In other words, though in the Satyayug carrying forward the lineage was the motive behind intercourse, gradually with the successive yugs it began to decline and the objective that intercourse should concomittantly result in progeny came into being. Mentally one has to go from the Kaliyug to the Satyayug, that is one has to make spiritual progress. Hence one should remember that life is not meant for enjoying material objects but these objects are necessary only to facilitate the journey of life. This is the very basis of our culture.

For one who is unable to love platonically, sexual intercourse is a means of uniting with the mind, by gradually developing physical attachment. Man acquires intense worldly happiness from the woman he marries. So also, the woman. Thus the implied meaning of marriage is that the couple should love each other deeply. The quality of love is that, as one starts loving someone and along with it follows Righteousness and remains in the holy company of renunciants, gradually it acquires a dimension of love without expectations. Love slowly shifts from the body to the mind. This itself is called widening of the horizons of love. Hence for the one who is unable to renounce material objects all of a sudden, the method of reducing it stepwise, is marriage. As the physical attachment of the couple starts decreasing they are able to love their children proportionately more and more. That is, they wish for the well-being of their children. Welfare means the fulfillment of human birth! From this one will realise how wrong is the belief that by following Righteousness, man becomes detached and more and more inactive day by day. Holy texts of great sages who have realised God will themselves illustrate how vastly expansive Their love for others is, that is how much They love the world.

The holy text Navanath Bhaktisar gives an apologue of King Bhartruharinath. To see how much Queen Pingala loved him, the king falsely informed her that he was dead. Upon hearing this, she became a sati (entered the pyre). When Bhartruharinath came to know of it he was about to jump into the pyre when the others stopped him. Then for twelve years he remained in the crematorium waiting for Queen Pingala. What is amusing is that inspite of having twelve hundred queens, his love had shifted from the body to the mind. Pingala too became a sati as her love had shifted onto the psychological plane. The twelve hundred queens were only physically attached and hence they did not become satis. Since the king was fed up of physical love he did not want their bodies but he wanted Pingala. Later Gorakhnath released the king from the Great Illusion (Maya). One gets sattvik (sattva predominant) Bliss in another’s company only when attachment for the physical body is reduced.

6.6 Satsang (holy company)

By remaining in satsang, due to an increase in the sattva component, atleast during that period sexual thoughts do not enter the mind.

6.7 The Guru’s grace (Gurukrupa)

So long as there is duality there will be sexual desire. Only when one reaches non-duality does it end. To accomplish it, there is definitely no better path than the Guru’s grace.

6.8 Realisation of God (Ishvarsakshatkar)

विषया विनिवर्तन्‍ते निराहारस्‍य देहिन: ।
रसवर्जं रसोऽप्‍यस्‍य परं दृष्‍ट्‌वा निवर्तते ।। – श्रीमद्‌भगवद्‌गीता (२.५९)

Meaning: A man who does not eat is liberated from all desires except the sexual desire. However after acquiring spiritual knowledge of The Supreme Brahman the attraction for all desires including sexual desire, disappears. – Shrimadbhagvadgita 2.59

Implied meaning: If man remains hungry, that is without food then one feels that his desire is dead, but this does not happen. Only since the body does not receive nourishment the desire appears to have died. Just as a tree dries up and appears lifeless if it does not receive sufficient water for many days and regains its freshness when the roots start receiving some water, so also if man remains without food then his sense organs become incapable of experiencing object pleasure. This however is not detachment. Once he starts eating again as earlier, the sense organs get attracted towards objects. Then ‘how to detach oneself from objects?’ ‘By eliminating the desire for them’, is the description given to express the purport. Then when will one be totally detached from objects ? It is answered as ‘with the realisation (sakshatkar) of The Supreme (Param) Brahman, the soul, the objects are destroyed totally and one acquires the realisation of God only with the Guru’s grace.

7. ‘Seminal loss means death’

Swami Vivekanand, Swami Shivanand, etc. have expressed concepts like ‘seminal loss means death’. Without considering in whose context they were said, in India two to three generations have accepted these statements as established facts and this has caused considerable loss to them. Doctors all over the world unanimously emphasize that loss of semen during intercourse, masturbation or in nocturnal emissions does not cause any harm and research has proved that seminal ejaculation is harmless. Inspite of this being so, how could Swami Vivekanand or Swami Shivanand make wrong statements? This is a doubt which many young people harbour. If one tries to understand the context of this statement, it will be clear that neither the doctor nor the Swami is wrong.

Intended for whom?: This statement was not directed towards the average person. It was meant for seekers desirous of spiritual progress.

The intention behind the statement: The intention behind making the statement was to wipe off the existing impression or to prevent the development of the impression that ‘ejaculation means happiness’ in the subconscious mind of a seeker following the path of Yoga. Other examples of this are famous statements like ‘the mother is a goddess (मातृदेवो भव ।)’ along with ‘a woman is just a mass of blood and flesh’. Such statements are meant to create aversion that is ‘dislike in the mind’ according to psychology. Only seekers should contemplate on these statements in this context. Others should not even read them.

8. Progress

A. Control according to the spiritual level: The table below explains how the sexual life at various spiritual levels is. From that a seeker will realise how much control over sexual desire he has acquired.

Spiritual
level %
Amount of sexual
activity %
Sexual thoughts and
happiness acquired
through sexual activity %
20 100 100
30 80 90
40 60 70
50 40 40
60 20 20
70 10 5
80 2
(Rarely in the dream)
2
90 0 0

B. Urdhvaretas: Urdhva (ऊर्ध्‍व) means the zenith and retas (रेतस्‌) means semen. Urdhvaretas (ऊर्ध्‍वरेतस्‌) means the one whose semen flows upwards. In an average person semen flows downwards. He is called adhoretas. Contrary to this, the semen of evolved people specially those following the path of Yoga gets converted into oja (precursor of divine energy), hence they are called urdhvaretas. The oja circulates throughout the body. Since the oja has an effect on the physical body, their physical bodies appear radiant and lustrous. A similar lustre is seen on the bodies of eunuchs who have been castrated. (Some acts in Yoga teach how the excreted semen, urine, etc. is to be reabsorbed.)

As one becomes an urdhvaretas gradually the passage of seminal excretion becomes narrow. Though the passage becomes narrow, the sexual desire is not reduced. If one indulges in sexual activity under such circumstances, then when semen is ejaculated through the narrowed seminal passage instead of happiness one experiences pain. This facilitates further reduction of sexual desire.

Reference:

Jivitvidya Athva Satyam Shivam Sundaram. Second edition, 1979. Author : Late Hari Ganesh Godbole. Publisher : Govind Yashvant Rane. G.Y. Rane Publishers, 2040 Sadashiv Peth, Tilak Road, Pune 400 030.
[1]. Pg. 42        [3]. Pg. 43

 

Chanting of Lord’s Name: Best tool for observing silence

Contents


1. Definition of Path of Silence (Mounyoga)

Achieving progressive control over the organs of speech, body and mind is moun (silence). According to the Path of Devotion (Bhaktimarg), ‘forgetting to speak as a result of remaining engrossed in contemplation of God’, is the real silence.

2. Types of Moun

2.1 According to the state

The table below gives information on the different types of silence (moun).

  Silence of speech
(Vak-moun). The
silence of hearing
(Karnamoun)
Silence as of
wood
(Kashta-moun)
Deep sleep
silence
(Sushupti
moun)
Great
silence
(Maha-
moun)
1. Signs Not uttering a
single word means
silence of speech
(Vak-moun) and
not even hearing
one’s own speech
is silence of hearing
(Karnamoun)
Remaining still
akin to wood
without any
expression,
gestures etc. (In
reality more
energy is wasted
in responding by
nodding gesturin-
g or saying ‘ham,
hum’ than in
speaking)
The silence
in all three
states,
waking,
dream and
sleep
One
who has
gone
beyond
speech
and
silence
2. The organ or
    body involved
    in the practice
    of silence
The organs of
speech
The physical
body
The mental
and causal
body
The
supra
causal
body
3. The spiritual
    level % after
    attaining the
    state
60 70 80 85
4. The mode of
    speech in
    operation*
Madhyama Pashyanti Pashyanti Pashyanti

* Information on the four modes of speech viz. Vaikhari, Madhyama, Pashyanti and Para is given in ‘Science of Spirituality: Chapter 9 – Path of Chanting The Lord’s Name (Namasankirtanyoga)’.

2.2 According to the cause

A. Incidental: If one feels that expressing one’s opinion will complicate the issue or will be unacceptable to the other, then under those circumstances, an individual observes silence.

B. Occasional

  • When performing ritualistic worship (puja), chanting, etc.
  • When eating
  • When performing religious observances on certain days of the week like Thursday, auspicious dates (tithis) like the eighth day (ashtami) and the eleventh day (ekadashi) of the Hindu lunar calendar and during the four months of Shravan, Bhadrapad, Ashvin, Kartik (chaturmas) of the Hindu lunar calendar.
  • When listening to the story of Mangalagouri
  • During menses

C. Daily ablutions

उत्‍सर्गे मैथुने चैव प्रस्रावे दन्‍तधावने ।
श्राद्धे भोजनकाले च षट्‌सु मौनं समाचरेत्‌ ।।

Meaning: During cleansing processes like defaecation, urination, blowing the nose, cleaning wax from the ears, removing discharge from the eyes, etc. and also during intercourse, when one has a bleeding wound, when brushing teeth, performing religious rites for the departed (shraddha) and when eating, one should maintain silence.

3. Benefits of observing Moun

3.1 According to physiology

A. According to physiology:

  • One can conserve the energy wasted in speaking by observing silence.

3.2 According to psychology

  • Several worldly problems are a consequence of speaking. By observing silence they are naturally avoided.
  • One can avoid telling lies.
  • Speaking is a result of thinking and emotions. If one does not express one’s thoughts and emotions like anger, then gradually they come under control and the impressions from the subconscious mind decrease. This means that observing silence with the body makes it easier to achieve silence of the mind.
  • Usually since one is not multilingual, the barrier of language can be overcome by speaking with gesticulations.
  • Concentration and contemplation are possible because of silence.

3.3 According to the science of Spirituality

  • It helps to develop an introverted attitude. Ritualistic worship (puja), reading holy books, periodic reading of holy texts (parayans), meditation and chanting The Lord’s Name are all a type of silence.‘Observing silence is of great importance in the study of establishing communion with The Lord. Since it is directly related to speech, when the mind wanders towards the world forgetting God, speech becomes one of its important media. Communion with God is not possible without introversion. Unless the mind gives up the habit of wandering outwards, which it does rapidly through the medium of speech it cannot become introverted. Hence when speech is curtailed, the extroverted nature of the mind automatically becomes feeble.’ (1)
  • The raja component begins to decrease and hence, the sattva component increases.
  • If a certain thing remains unused, it accumulates. For instance if money remains unspent, it gets accumulated and one becomes financially prosperous. Similarly, if one does not speak then the energy in words increases, that is one acquires the supernatural power of speech (vaksiddhi) by which whatever one speaks comes true. One also acquires the ability to bestow a curse or a boon.
  • After acquiring the supernatural power of speech, that is the state when whatever is spoken comes true, if one observes silence, one does not have to repent for that which has come true due to what was uttered accidentally.
  • The individual learns to maintain the stance of an observer. Due to these benefits, it is said ‘Silence can achieve everything (मौनं सर्वार्थसाधनम्‌ ।)’ (2)

4. Practical suggestions

A. The stages in silence of speech (vak-moun), silence of hearing (karnamoun)

  • Not speaking that which will hurt others
  • Avoiding useless discussions, chattering, arguments, etc.
  • Speaking less
  • Speaking only what is essential
  • Speaking only on Spirituality if one has to speak, at all.

B. Initially whilst observing silence, it is better not to remain in the proximity of others. Thus there is no question of either speaking by accident or getting thoughts about others. If it is not possible to practise silence in one’s home, then it should be practised in isolation. Since one cannot express any thoughts, initially one gets frustrated from within. Considering this point as well, remaining in solitude proves beneficial.

C. In the period of silence one should not read newspapers, listen to the radio, watch television, etc. as there is a possibility of getting distracted.

D. One should give prior instructions verbally or written, about what food one will eat, etc. as more energy is expended in expressing thoughts through gestures, rather than actual speaking. Besides, there is a possibility of misinterpretation by others.

E. One should practise silence for one to two hours on working days and five to six hours on holidays. Then the period of silence should be increased to one full day, a week, a fortnight, a month and so on. Each period of observance of silence consists of forty days. This is called an anushthan. After one anushthan one should break the period of silence for atleast two to four days. Subsequently one may observe another anushthan.

F. In the period of silence one should engage in chanting, concentration, meditation or introspection, so as to avoid thoughts in relation to speech.

    ‘The real support for silence is chanting The Lord’s Name itself. Without chanting, the one practising silence can get deluded. Chanting is the real secret of silence.’
                                                          – Saint

H. It is essential to observe silence when performing vowed religious observances (vrats, vaikalyas) and periodic reading of holy texts (parayans). As a result, the sattva component as well as the spiritual emotion (bhav) increases and the benefits derived from it are augmented.

5. Achieving silence of speech (vak-moun) automatically

In any path of Yoga, when desires and instincts and queries of the mind are over, the attitude becomes introverted and silence of speech is automatically achieved.

6. A sage (muni), a sage with steady intellect (sthitapradnya muni) and a great sage (mahamuni)

A. A sage (muni): The one who speaks on no subject other than Spirituality is referred to as a sage.

B. A sage with steady intellect (sthitapradnya muni)

Vachamyam is a seeker who observes silence. The description of such a saint is given in Shrimadbhagvadgita (2.56) as follows:

दु:खेष्‍वनुव्‍दिग्नमना: सुखेषु विगतस्‍पृह: ।
वीतरागभयक्रोध: स्‍थितधीर्मुनिरुच्‍यते ।।

Meaning: He who is unperturbed by sorrow, is unattached to happiness, love (affection), fear and anger is called a sage of steady intellect.’(2)

C. The great sage (mahamuni)

He who has renounced words is a mouni
Hence one can practise the Yogas with fervour
                                                   – Shri Dasbodh 17.5.9

Implied meaning: ‘Despite speaking, the liberated souls do not speak. Silence and spiritual knowledge are The Lord’s secret manifestations, all the others are expressed manifestations. Hence, silence (moun) is described as a psychological penance, instead of a vocal one. That is, as long as there is desire for objects the silence of speech cannot be considered to be the real silence. Brahman is described as the ‘Wordless Brahman’. Hence those who are liberated while still embodied and have experienced that ‘I am Brahman’ are said to be practising silence although they are speaking. Of the different types of silence, deep sleep silence (sushuptimoun) and great silence (mahamoun) are of this type. In short, speech is worldly, not speaking is Spirituality and silence is Brahman. In other words, losing awareness of one’s silence is the true silence !’ – Saint

7. Limitations

A. No great discomfort is caused by practising silence of speech (vak-moun) and silence as of wood (kashthamoun). Others however, are at a loss to understand the one practising it. In order to achieve silence of deep sleep (sushuptimoun) and great silence (mahamoun), one has to undertake spiritual practice as advised by the Guru. Silence of speech and silence as of wood are the tools, while deep sleep silence and great silence are the targets.

B. ‘In the science of Yoga who is a learned fool?

     The one who practises postures (asans), pranayam, etc. without following the restraints (yam) and regulations (niyam).’(3)

     The same tenet is also applicable to those practising silence of speech and silence as of wood. [Yam and niyam are the first two parts from the Ashtangyoga (Eightfold Yoga) of Patanjali and are related to the mind. Refer ‘Science of Spirituality: Chapter 36 – Path of Meditation (Dhyanyoga)’.]

8. Comparison with other paths of Yoga

Refer ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 40 – Comparison of the Various Paths of Yoga’.

Reference:

[1]. Svasvarup Anusandhan Athava Antaryatra, Pg. 105. Author : K.V. Belsare. Publisher – P.M. Tilak, Tridal Publications, Near Prarthana Samaj, Girgaon, Mumbai 400 004.

[2]. Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh. Vol. 7, First edition, Pg. 432. Editor and Publisher : Pandit Mahadevashastri Joshi, Secretary, Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh Mandal, 410, Shanivar Peth, Pune 411 030.

[3]. Sadhubodh : Shri Gulabrao Maharaj Virachit Prashnottarattmak Sukti Ratnavali. Ashtamayashti, Pg. 24. Publisher : Shri Dnyaneshvar Madhuradvait Sampradayik Mandal, Dahisath, Amravati.

 

How does mudra assist in meditation?

Contents


1. Asans (postures)

Asans are of two types, external (for example a seat made of wool, grass, deerskin, tiger skin, etc.) and physical (postures). Information on external asans (seats) is given in ‘Science of Spirituality: Chapter 3 – Practice of Spirituality’.

Definition: It is the ability to remain seated comfortably in one position for a considerable period of time (स्‍थिरसुखमासनम्‌ ।) [Patanjal Yogadarshan, 2/46].

Mastery over postures (asansiddhi): If one is able to sit still without any movement for upto half an hour then it is said that one is able to maintain a posture. If one acquires the ability to perform postures for upto three hours then he is said to have acquired mastery over them.

Types: There are eighty-four lakh types of postures, that is as many types as the species of living organisms. Only a few of them have been discussed here.

  • Postures useful for meditation: Padmasan (the lotus posture), vajrasan (the adamant posture), etc. Meditation becomes easy once one is able to sit still in one place according to the above definition.
  • Postures used as exercise: Paschimottanasan (the forward stretch), mayurasan (the peacock posture), etc.
  • Postures for relaxation: Shavasan (the corpse posture), makarasan (the crocodile posture), etc.

1.1 Benefits

A. According to physiology:

  • As a remedy for illnesses: Postures are useful in illnesses related to muscles and joints, the respiratory system and the heart.
  • Exercise: For instance with most abdominal postures internal organs are exercised.

    The distinctive feature of postures is that, when performing them instead of the body expending energy, it receives exercise. Not only this but when postures are practised, physical energy gets converted into mental energy and one feels refreshed and energetic rather than exhausted.

  • Relaxation: With some postures like shavasan (the corpse posture) the body gets relaxed.
  • Purification of the body: If one practises only postures as spiritual practice then the physical body can be purified at the most by 20%. Any other spiritual practice can bring about the same amount of purification. By practising postures the maximum purification that can occur in the various bodies is 7 % in the vital energy body (prandeha), 5% in the mental body (manodeha), 2% in the causal body (karandeha) and 1% in the supracausal body (mahakarandeha). With the Guru’s grace (Gurukrupa) the vital energy body can be purified upto 30% and all the other bodies upto 100%. For further information refer ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 40 – Comparison of the Various Paths of Yoga’.

B. According to psychology

  • A reduction in psychological stress: By performing postures 3% of people with mild stress recover and in 2% the stress decreases. The mechanism of reduction in psychological stress is elucidated in the following point.
  • An increase in concentration and Bliss: The body and mind influence one another. Whenever there is some anxiety in the mind, there is a rapidity of movements of the organs in the body, for example a person is unable to sit still in one place, his heart beats fast, breathing becomes rapid, etc. On the other hand, when the mind is calm, the movements of the organs in the body slow down. Similarly when the body movements are rapid, the mind too runs faster. Contrary to this, the less the movements of the body, the less are the thoughts in the mind. While maintaining a posture since the movements of the voluntary muscles in the body are completely at a standstill, the thoughts in the mind decrease markedly. In short, concentration of the mind increases and one experiences Bliss. Later, when the voluntary organs are brought under control, the involuntary organs too can be controlled. At that time the mind becomes thoughtless. The same concept can be explained in spiritual terminology as : without controlling the organs of action mastery over postures cannot be achieved. Once mastery over postures is gained, the seeker becomes a master of Yoga (yogarudh) and when he becomes a master of Yoga he can control his mind.

C. According to the science of Spirituality

  • Reduction in the raja component and consequent increase in the sattva component: Movements occur due to the raja component. Thus naturally, when movements are decreased, it facilitates a decrease in the raja component. Hence the proportion of sattva component rises.
  • Facilitation of clearance of the path of kundalini (spiritual energy): Several postures make the vertebrae of the spinal column strong and flexible. As a result the obstacles in the Sushumna channel running through their cavities are overcome.

1.2 Practical suggestions

A. Learning from an expert: ‘The loss that occurs to individuals, from practising Hathayoga is more than the benefits. For instance people who are underweight should not perform shirshasan (the head stand) and those practising it, should always perform it at the end of a session of postures. Thereafter one should not perform any other postures. After performing all the postures, to overcome the stress and exhaustion which the various bodily organs face, one should remain in shavasan (the corpse posture) for 15 minutes; thereafter practise shirshasan and then repeat shavasan for another fifteen minutes. No matter how skilled one may be in the yogic posture, as a rule, one should never perform shirshasan for more than four minutes.’

B. Avoiding the menace of insects: To avoid the menace of mosquitoes, houseflies, ants, etc. one should use a mosquito net, a fan, insect repellants, etc.

C. Preliminary exercise (warming up): In order to get rid of lethargy and to bring about flexibility, one may do spot jogging or jog for some distance and also perform all types of movements of each of the joints, four to five times. As a result of this it is easier to practise postures. After this preliminary exercise one should perform shavasan for fifteen to twenty minutes and then commence the other postures.

D. Other exercises and postures: A gap of atleast one hour should be maintained between postures and other exercises.

E. Empty stomach: If one has had a light meal (snacks) then for two hours after it or atleast three to four hours after lunch one should not perform postures. One should not eat or drink anything for one hour after performing postures.

G. Bath: Either of the two, bathing or postures may be done earlier. However there should be a gap of atleast half an hour between them.

H. The seat:

  • In the beginning one should sit on a mat so that the ground will not hurt.
  • Once one is able to maintain postures, the energy that is not utilised for the activity of the body is liberated and can enter the ground. To prevent this one should use a bad conductor of energy like grass, deerskin, wool, wood, etc. as a seat for the posture. (Saints use wooden slippers to prevent energy loss through the feet). The energy conserved in this way can be used for the purification of channels and to open the Sushumna channel. [Refer ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter – 38 Path of Activation of Spiritual Energy (Kundaliniyoga).]

I. Direction: While performing postures one should sit facing the east or the north, as they are favourable for physical and spiritual progress.

J. Postures useful for meditation

  • When practising the posture, one may sit cross-legged. If one is able to sit in padmasan (the lotus posture) or ardhapadmasan (the half lotus posture), then it is ideal. However for those over forty, it is better to pay more attention to meditation than to waste time in mastering padmasan.
  • If it is not possible to sit with the legs crossed then one may sit leaning back in a chair or may lie down as in shavasan (the corpse posture).
  • When sitting one should sit erectly. Thus due to uniform distribution of weight on the vertebrae one is able to sit for a longer period.
  • As far as possible do not lean against anything. However if not possible then one may lean against something.

K. Avoid undue fatigue: One must feel exhilarated after performing postures. One should not practise too many postures such that they will cause fatigue.

L. Experiencing physical discomfort: Initially one experiences discomfort like tingling and numbness of feet, itching, pain, etc.

  • One should try to bear the discomfort.
  • If the discomfort is severe, then one may perform the postures for five minutes to begin with and gradually increase the duration.
  • Initially in order to distract the mind from discomfort one should perform postures while watching television, listening to the radio or during conversation. After a few weeks no discomfort is experienced.

M. Women and postures: One should not perform postures during menses and also from the fifth month of pregnancy till three months after delivery.

N. Meditation on chanting (japadhyan): Once one is able to maintain a posture, to keep the mind occupied in something, in the beginning one should do chanting and thereafter when one makes progress in postures one must meditate. During that time, therefore one can do chanting or meditation and one need not find separate time for them.

O. The timetable for daily practice: The following table gives the types of postures and their duration if one wishes to practise postures daily for 30 or 60 minutes.

‘Types Number Duration (Minutes)
30 60
A. Warming up exercises
1. Jogging or spot jogging     2
2. Bending forward and backward 10 1 1
3. Twisting the torso 10 1 1
4. Back stretch, forward stretch 10   1
   Shavasan (corpse posture)     2
   Agnisar (expiration in uddiyyan)
   and nouli (abdominal corrugator)
    3
   Suryanamaskar (solar bent posture)   3 6
B. Postures
1. Ardhakatichakrasan (side stretch)   2 2
2. Ardhachakrasan (half wheel posture)   0.5 0.5
3. Padahastasan (leghand posture)   1 1
4. Parivrutta trikonasan (reverse
    triangular posture)
    2
5. Pashchimottanasan (forward stretch)   1 2
6. Suptavajrasan (adamant posture)
    and ushtrasan (camel posture)
  0.5 1
7. Yogamudra and shashankasan
    (rabbit posture)
  2 2
8. Ardhamatsyendrasan (semi-master
    fish posture)
  2 2
9. Mayurasan (peacock posture)     1
    Relaxation in shavasan     3
10. Bhujangasan (serpent posture)   1 1
11. Shalabhasan (grasshopper posture)
      or Dhanurasan (bow posture)
  0.5 0.5
12. Sarvangasan (shoulder stand) and
      repetition in reverse order
  3 3
13. Halasan (plough posture)     2
14. Matsyasan (fish posture)   1 1
      Relaxation in shavasan   4 4
15. Shirshasan (head stand)     2
      Repetition of shavasan     6
C. Pranayam
1. Kapalbhati 60 0.5  
  120   1
2. Nadishuddhi (purification of channels
    of spiritual energy)
9 2 2
    Chanting of ‘Om’ thrice     1
D. Moun (silence)   2 2
    Prayer   2 2
    Total duration (Minutes)   30 60’(1)

1.3 Absorbing the sweat in one’s body

One school of thought advocates that one should not sweat while practising postures whereas the other says that the sweat should be absorbed in the body for the following reasons.

  • Everything has originated from Brahman (God) and man too was created from It. Since one has to go from man to Brahman again he has to do everything in the reverse manner for example shirshasan (head stand), take in water through the anus, take in urine or semen through the penis, vomiting, similarly absorbing sweat back into the body, etc.
  • Sweating is a function of the apan vital energy. Absorbing sweat back into the body is contrary to the action of apan. Hence it becomes possible ‘to combine pran and apan vital energies (प्राणापान समायुक्‍तो)’- Shrimadbhagvadgita 15:14.

1.4 Who should not practise yogic postures?

The postures contraindicated in various conditions (for instance a person suffering from cervical spondylosis should not practise shirshasan) are given in books on yogic postures.

‘In the science of Yoga who is a learned fool?

The one who practises postures (asans), pranayam, etc. without following the restraints (yam) and regulations (niyam).’(2) The same tenet is also applicable to those practising only postures. [Yam and niyam are the first two parts from the Ashtangyoga (Eightfold Yoga) of Patanjali and are related to the mind. Refer ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 36 – Path of Meditation (Dhyanyoga)’.]

1.5 Comparison with other paths of Yoga

Postures (asan), bandha, mudra and keval kumbhak: From the spiritual point of view postures, bandhas and mudras are hardly of 0.l% importance in comparison to keval kumbhak (spontaneous cessation of breathing).

2. Bandha

Origin: The word bandha [बन्‍ध्‌ (bondage)] is derived from the root word bandha [बन्‍ध (to tie)].

Definition: A bandha refers to stoppage of flow of the vital energy (pranshakti) in one of the channels, by obstructing it.

2.1 Effects and significance

When the supply of energy to an organ is reduced with a bandha it helps to decrease the desires of that organ.

When the vital energy flowing through one channel is stopped, it changes its path of flow, that is flows through another channel. For example when the triad of the bandhas, jalandhar bandha, uddiyan bandha and mulbandha is performed, the vital energy flowing through the Ida and Pingala channels starts flowing through the Sushumna, that is the energy flows upwards. This is elaborated in ‘Science of Spirituality : Chapter 38 – Path of Activation of Spiritual Energy (Kundaliniyoga)’. ‘In the science of Hathayoga some bandhas which are a type of postures have been described. They are yogabandha, mahabandha, mahavedha, uddiyan, mulbandha, jalandhar bandha, etc. During kumbhak (breath holding) one needs to close some of the openings from among the nine (navadvar) in the body. These yogic bandhas are very useful for that purpose. Bandhas are also useful for drawing vital energy from a specific part of the body and for stabilising it in another. The study of bandhas is necessary if one wishes to acquire mastery in pranayam.’(3) If kumbhak is practised without a bandha, ailments such as headache, abdominal distension, etc. can develop.

If a bandha is practised prior to practising kumbhak in pranayam, the kumbhak can be effectively practised for a longer duration because though no oxygen enters the body at that time, due to the bandha, the stored energy is utilised in the required place.

2.2 Types

A. Mulbandha: Here contraction of the anus is done for as long as possible sitting in sahajasan (the ease posture), padmasan (the lotus posture), etc. Due to the contraction there is pressure on the Muladhar chakra which helps to activate the kundalini (spiritual energy). According to the Gherand Sanhita (3/12, 13) mulbandha is practised in the following manner: The centre of the part between the anus and the sex organ is pressed with the left foot. The right foot is then placed over the sex organ. Thereafter the anus is contracted and the navel is drawn in. This bandha can be performed during various activities such as inspiration, breath holding, expiration, chanting The Lord’s Name, etc.

B. Uddiyan bandha: This word is derived from ut (उत्‌) and di (डी). The meaning of the root di is to fly. This helps the kundalini to ascend (fly) hence it is known as uddiyan bandha. Here the abdominal muscles are contracted inwards as much as possible for a maximum period of time. After practising kumbhak in expiration, this bandha is practised before inspiration. The uddiyan bandha changes the downward velocity of the apan vital energy and unites it with the pran and saman vital energies. As a result the dormant kundalini is activated and the udan vital energy helps the pran or kundalini to ascend through the Sushumna channel.

C. Jalandhar bandha: After breathing in, the chin is kept pressed to the chest for as long as possible. Consequently the energy flowing in the Ida and Pingala channels stops. In this bandha the vital energy cannot go below the Vishuddha chakra.

D. Tribandha: The triad of bandhas. Here the three bandhas mulbandha, uddiyan bandha and jalandhar bandha are performed simultaneously. Tribandha is also known as bandhatraya.

E. Mahabandha: ‘With the left ankle, pressure should be exerted on the anus. Subsequently the right ankle should be placed over the left.The jalandhar bandha should be performed after contracting the perineum.’ (Gherand Sanhita 3/14, 15).

2.3 Who should not practise bandhas?

If one is suffering from piles, fissures, etc. one should not practise mulbandha. Those suffering from peptic ulcer should not practise uddiyan bandha. In case of cervical spondylosis one should not practise the jalandhar bandha. One should not practise postures or bandhas without the guidance of experienced teachers of Yoga as it could be harmful.

3. Mudra

3.1 Origin and meaning

Mud (मुद्‌) means to impart Bliss. This is the root from which the word mudra (मुद्रा) is derived. The word mudra has two meanings viz. a symbol (e.g. abhaymudra – the sign of protection) and an act of imparting Bliss.

‘According to the spiritual practice and sects, mudras acquire various meanings.

  • The specific configuration of hands, feet, fingers and other parts of the body is known as a mudra. For example dhenumudra (mudra of the cow), ghantamudra (mudra of the bell), bhusparshamudra (mudra of touching the ground), abhaymudra (mudra of protection), etc.
  • The symbols of the instruments of Lord Vishnu such as the conch, discus, etc. sported on their bodies by Vaishnavites are also known as mudras.
  • The glass or crystal earrings worn by ascetics (sadhus) of the Gorakh sect.
  • Those practised in Hathayoga: Bhuchari, khechari, chachari, agochari, etc.
  • In secret tantrik spiritual practice, the woman who has sexual relations with a seeker posing as the companion seeker. (In the Tantra sect other mudras are also important.)
  • Certain postures of the hands adopted in dance, drama, sculpture are known as ordinary mudras.’(4) The science of dance was created by taking words from the Rugveda, music from the Samaveda, mudras from the Yajurveda and emotion (rasa) from the Atharvaveda. In dance, dramatic representation plays a very important role. One form of that representation is the mudra.
  • Specific physical actions performed during particular rituals in ritualistic worship (karmakand).

3.2 Effects and significance

  • The mudra imparts stability just like postures.
  • The various types of mudrapranayams have effects on various parts of the lungs.
  • Due to a mudra, vital energy (pranshakti) flows through a specific channel thus increasing the effect of vital energy on oneself or others, that is Bliss is experienced. For example in abhaymudra vital energy flow is directed towards another.

Those who can sense vibrations from the subtle dimension to some extent may perform the following experiment. Bring together the tips of all the five fingers of the hand and then separate them. Observe what vibrations one gets while drawing them close and separating them. Repeat this four to five times. Then hold the thumb and index finger as done by westerners when eating with a fork and spoon and release them. Repeat this four to five times. Observe what vibrations are experienced with both actions. After one is sure what vibrations were felt, read the following paragraph.

More energy is experienced when all the five finger tips are brought together than when the fingers adopt the posture of holding the fork and spoon. That is why when eating, Indians use fingers instead of a fork and spoon. Morsels of food thus charged with energy are put into the mouth; that extra energy helps in digestion.

3.3 Types

Some postures are also referred to as mudras, for example sinhamudra (mudra of a lion), Brahmamudra, viparitkarni mudra (reverse mudra). Here instead of these only the main mudras in which the mudra part is more important than the posture are discussed.

A. Mudras for physical purification

  • Yogamudra: Certain mudras are performed in some postures. They are referred to as yogamudras. Yogamudras are specially performed in order to exert pressure on the lower abdomen and thus change the direction of energy flow.
  • Mahamudra: ‘The anus is compressed with the left ankle and the right leg is extended. The big toe of the right foot is held with both the hands. The neck is contracted and the gaze fixed on the tip of the nose.’ (Gherand Sanhita 3/4)

B. Mudras associated with pranayam

  • Chit mudra
  • Chinmay mudra
  • Adi mudra
  • Brahma mudra

C. Mudras useful for meditation

  • Shanmukhi mudra: ‘Sit in a posture and spread the fingers of both hands. Shut the eyes with the index fingers, the nostrils with the middle fingers, the upper and lower lips consecutively with the fourth and little fingers and the orifices of both the ears with the thumbs. With the movement of the middle fingers close each nostril alternately and breathe as is done for nadishuddhi (purification of the channels of spiritual energy).

    By closing four out of the five sense organs (viz. eyes, nose, ears and tongue) the perception of external stimuli decreases and tranquility of the mind is facilitated.’(5) At that time if one concentrates on the rhythm of respiration (chanting a mantra along with it) then one begins to slip into meditation.

  • Khechari mudra: In this mudra the tip of the tongue is turned upwards and inwards towards the throat and the gaze is focussed between the eyebrows. ‘Kha (ख)’ in khechari (खेचरी) is associated with akash (absolute ether) and chari (चरी) indicates movement. This mudra can take the kundalini (spiritual energy) upto the akash in the Brahmarandhra. Hence it is named as khechari. Also due to this mudra, the body becomes healthy.
  • Shambhavi mudra: Sitting in a posture, the pupils should be moved upwards such that they lie below the upper eyelids and the eyes should be kept half open. At the same time the gaze should be fixed between the two eyebrows. The Adnya chakra is influenced by this mudra. One is also able to see light if one performs this mudra for a long time.
  • Dhyanmudra (samadhimudra): During meditation, if one sits in padmasan (the lotus posture) and places the palms of both hands with fingers apart on both the knees then one assumes the dhyanmudra.

D. Mudras mainly useful in spiritual practice with expectation

  • If an undertaken task appears impossible to accomplish then it can be achieved with chanting accompanied by certain mudras. The text Arya Manjushri Mul Kalpa mentions several such mudras.
  • To keep the body fit and healthy one should perform certain mudras along with bijamantras of the five cosmic elements in proximity to specific parts of the body.
  • For acquisition of mental peace and satisfaction the Sharadatilak recommends the bilvamudra along with the mantraklim”.
  • To combat disease the use of mainly the surabhi, pran, apan, vayu, pruthvi, apa, apanvayu, surya, linga, shankha and other mudras is prevalent.
  • To control desire, anger and insomnia the mudras kamajayi, shakat and dnyan have been recommended.
  • To develop an impressive personality the sarvavashankari, sarvankush and sarvakarshini mudras from the ritualistic worship (puja) of Shrividya are useful.
  • For spiritual progress and a spiritual code of conduct the pranapan, linga, surabhi, trikhanda, and yoni mudras are useful.
  • If mudras are to be used for overcoming anger then first one has to study the two sciences viz. classical music as spiritual practice (Svarasadhana) and examination of the pulse (Nadipariksha) and only then decide which mudra is to be used.’(6)

E. Twenty-four mudras of the hands: One will realise how innumerable the mudras are from the following mudras performed merely with the hands during certain rituals of worship.

सुमुखं संपुटं चैव विततं विस्‍तृतं तथा ।
व्‍दिमुखं त्रिमुखं चैव चतु: पंचमुखं तथा ।।

षण्‍मुखाऽधोमुखं चैव व्‍यापकाञ्‍जलिकं तथा ।
शकटं यमपाशं च ग्रंथितं चोन्‍मुखोन्‍मुखम्‌ ।। 

प्रलंबं मुष्‍टिकं चैव मत्‍स्‍यं कूर्मं वराहकम्‌ ।
सिंहाक्रांत महाक्रांतं मुद्‌गरं पल्‍लवं तथा ।।

एता मुद्रा न जानाति गायत्री निष्‍फला भवेत्‌ ।
एता मुद्रास्‍तु कर्तव्‍या गायत्री सुप्रतिष्‍ठिता ।।

Sumukham samputam chaiva vitatam vistrutam tatha
Dvimukham trimukham chaiva chatuhu
panchamukham tatha

Shanmukha’dhomukham chaiva vyapakanjalikam tatha
Shakatam yamapasham cha granthitham chonmukhonmukham

Pralambam mushtikam chaiva matsyam kurmam
varahakam Sinhakrant mahakrantam mudgaram
pallavam tatha

Eta mudra na janati Gayatri nishphala bhavet
Eta mudrastu kartavya Gayatri supratisthita

  • 1. Sumukh: Fold both the hands placing the corresponding fingers over each other (like namaskar made on the chest).
  • 2. Samput: The left hand should be placed with the palm up. The right hand should be placed on it with the palm down creating a hollow between the two. This shape resembles a pearl oyster with its shells enclosing each other.
  • 3. Vitat: The two hands should be held together at the wrists. The rest of the hands (that is the palms along with the fingers) should be kept open.
  • 4. Vistrut: The left hand should be held below and right above, parallel to each other with a distance of one foot between them, in an erect posture.
  • 5. Dvimukh: Both the hands should be held with the corresponding fingers touching each other such that two openings one above and one below are formed in the middle portion between the two palms.
  • 6. Trimukh: A third opening should be made by keeping a hollow between the two thumbs, in addition to the two mentioned above.
  • 7. Chaturmukh: A fourth opening should be made by creating a hollow between the index and middle fingers, in addition to the three given above.
  • 8. Panchamukh: A fifth opening should be kept in between the middle and fourth fingers, in addition to the above four.
  • 9. Shanmukh: A sixth opening should be kept in between the ring finger and the little finger, in addition to the five given above.
  • 10. Adhomukh: Both wrists should be held together keeping the open part facing the ground.
  • 11. Vyapakanjalik : Both the palms should be cupped together and rotated horizontally.
  • 12. Shakat : The thumbs and index fingers of both the hands should be held together. The left palm should be held facing downwards, the middle and ring finger of the right hand placed on the respective fingers of the left after placing the right hand facing downwards over the left hand. Then the little fingers of both the hands should be bent inwards.
  • 13. Vamapash : The middle and ring fingers of both the hands should be flexed. The corresponding thumbs should be flexed and held over them tightly. Then the right palm should be placed over the left held below such that the middle and ring fingers touch one another and the middle and ring finger of the left hand should be pressed with the left thumb.
  • 14. Granthit: All except the index fingers of both the hands should be kept pressed under the thumb. Then the left palm should be placed upturned and the right facing downwards and the index fingers of both should be joined like the joint of a chain.
  • 15. Unmukhonmukh: Joining the fingers of both the hands together and keeping the left hand down and the right hand on top one should place the tip of the fingers upon each other. Then in this state the hands should be rotated so that the right hand comes down and the left up and then vice versa.
  • 16. Pralamb: The left hand should be kept facing upwards horizontally towards the right side, the elbow of the right hand should be kept vertically on the open hand (this is akin to a right angle).
  • 17. Mushtik: Fists of both the hands should be made and that of the right should be placed over the left.
  • 18. Matsya: The fingers of both the hands should be straightened, the left hand should face down and the right should be placed over it such that the thumbs of both the hands point towards both the sides and the fifth finger of the left hand followed by the ring finger, middle finger, ring finger and fifth finger will follow sequentially. Then the thumbs of both the hands should be moved like the fins of a fish.
  • 19. Kurma: The fingers of both the hands should be facing downwards. Then placing the right hand over the left the corresponding fingers of both should be united over one another and a hollow should be made in between the palms.
  • 20. Varah: The corresponding fingers of both the hands should be touched to one another. Then the left hand should be kept facing upwards and the right facing downwards, over it. The tips of the four fingers should be kept in a fashion akin to the snout of a boar (varaha).
  • 21. Sinhakranta: The little fingers and thumbs of both the hands should be joined. Holding the wrists together the rest of the fingers should be kept wide open akin to the open jaw of a lion.
  • 22. Mahakranta: The left hand should be held straight facing upwards and the right should be held straight facing downwards maintaining a distance of one foot between them.
  • 23. Mudgar: The elbow of the right hand should be placed upon the left hand and making a fist of the right hand, the arm should be held straight, vertically upwards.
  • 24. Pallav: The thumb of the left hand should be held with that of the right and both the hands should be turned outwards such that the external surfaces of the hands join together while the thumbs remain united. Then the fingers of both the hands should be flapped like wings.’(7)

Reference:

Yoga – Asane, Pranayam, Mudra, Kriya. First edition, June 1996. Publisher : V. N. Limaye, Sachiv – Vivekanand Kendra Publications Marathi section, 1890, Sadashiv Peth, Natubag, Pune 411 030.
[1]. Pg. 64     [5]. Pg. 62

[2]. Sadhubodh : Shri Gulabrao Maharaj Virachit Prashnottarattmak Sukti Ratnavali. Ashtamayashti, Pg. 24. Publisher : Shri Dnyaneshvar Madhuradvait Sampradayik Mandal, Dahisath, Amravati.

Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh. Publisher : Pandit Mahadevashastri Joshi, Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh Mandal, 410, Shanivar Peth, Pune 411 030.
Vol.3 to 10 : First edition Vol.1 and 2 : Second edition
[3]. Vol. 6, Pg. 33     [4]. Vol. 7, Pg. 430

[6]. Hastamudra – Eka Daivi Vidnyanacha Parichay. Santakrupa Divali 1994 issue, Pg. 35. Author: Mr. V. R. Bapat

[7]. Shri Gurucharitra Kathamrut. First edition, Gurupratipada, 25 February 1986, Pg.770. Editor : Krushnabhakta Divakar Anant Ghaisas. Publisher : Dhananjay Balkrushna Dhavale, Samarth sadan, First Bhatvadi, Girgaon, Mumbai 400 004.

 

Why are spiritual experiences discussed during satsangs?

Spiritual experience

Contents


1. Some unique spiritual experiences about spiritual emotion (bhav)

At the satsangs (spiritual meetings) conducted by the Sanstha, spiritual experiences of seekers are discussed. The reason for this is as follows. The theoretical information delivered there only helps those curious about Spirituality to believe in it whereas spiritual experiences help to augment their faith. One gets inspired to undertake more spiritual practice with the faith that God will endow one with spiritual experiences. A seeker can also learn from the spiritual experiences of others. It is with this very objective that different spiritual experiences have been elucidated in this point as well as elsewhere in this holy text with regard to spiritual emotion. Often a spiritual experience in one seeker is repeated in another. This establishes that there is a science behind the spiritual experiences. Thus a spiritual experience of a seeker given in this holy text may also have been experienced by other seekers. So also, spiritual experiences other than those given here may also have been experienced by several seekers. However as they are voluminous, all of them cannot be accomodated in this holy text. All spiritual experiences in the context of spiritual emotion are given in separate holy texts on spiritual experiences.

2. Teachings on awakening spiritual emotion

2.1 In the waking state

Maharaj(Saint) subtly teaching about spiritual emotion, in the waking state: On 26th September 2002 after my morning bath, I was offering obeisance to the picture of Baba [H.H. Maharaj]. Just then Mr. Anand arrived with flowers and told me to offer them to Maharaj’s picture. I felt overjoyed. The flowers were of different types. I tried to sort out the different flowers and place them before Baba’s picture. Though I had begun this task with a prayer, H.H. Baba said, ‘Baby, your spiritual emotion today is not as usual’. This hurt me. So I prayed wholeheartedly again and amidst repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name offered the flowers in front of Baba’s picture. I offered the rest of the flowers to the other deities and wherever there were strips of the Names of deities. When I came to pay obeisance to Baba’s picture once again, He said, ‘See how well you did it now !’ – Sadhika, ashram

2.2 In meditation

A. Doctor’s assurance to a seeker during meditation about augmention of his spiritual emotion: On 18th October 2002 during meditation, despite the absence of an object of meditation, I experienced a lot of Bliss (Anand). When H.H. Doctor made a statement that ‘warrior seekers had to enhance their spiritual emotion (bhav)’, I realised that it was meant for me as well. I was very restless as I wanted this to happen quickly. This was unconsciously causing apprehension in me. During meditation I asked H.H. Doctor, ‘I feel intensely that my spiritual emotion should grow but I am getting tense about it. What should I do?’ and H.H. Doctor replied, ‘Do not worry. Everything will occur by itself.’ This lessened my anxiety and I experienced Bliss. – Sadhak

3. Awakening of sattvik (sattva predominant) spiritual emotion due to seekers

A. Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion after getting an intuition about the arrival of a seeker: One day as I waited at the bus-stop to go to college, suddenly a trax approached me. It reminded me of Mr. Athlekar and I wept. This had never happened to me before, after seeing a trax. After returning home in the evening my mother told me that Mr. Javlekar had arrived in our town ! – Sadhika

B. Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion in a seeker and perceiving herself to be performing the actions of other seekers at a get-together of seekers: A get-together of seekers was arranged at Karad on 23rd April 2000. I was allotted the responsibility of organising the programme of narrating spiritual experiences. Though I too could participate in it, I did not feel like doing so. Instead, I wished that Miss Amruta would narrate hers. On behalf of the local centre of the Sanstha she was felicitated there. At that time, I felt as if I were being felicitated. As I heard her spiritual experience the Bliss that I enjoyed was far more than what I experience when I narrate mine. My ego had become expansive at least for the sake of one individual.

     From 16th to 18th May 2000, I accompanied Mr. Athlekar on his Ichalkaranji-Kolhapur tour. The spiritual experiences that I got at Ichalkaranji are as follows. As Mr. Jathar jotted down the points I felt as if I were doing it. As Mrs. Koli conversed on the telephone I felt as if I were doing it. When Mrs. Magdum asked a query I felt as if I myself were asking it. I felt that Mr. Athlekar should explain the table on ‘Spiritual practice according to the class (varna) and the spiritual level’ to her. The next moment Mr. Athlekar told her that a Brahman (priest) has 60% desire to make spiritual progress. After the occurrence of all these incidents, my spiritual emotion for the Guru grew so tremendously that I was overwhelmed and speechless. This state lasted for approximately 15-20 minutes before I returned to normal. – Sadhika

4. Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion due to the spiritually evolved

4.1 Through touch

A. Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion on placing my head on Doctor’s feet: On 1st November 1997, H.H. Doctor arrived at the residence of Dr. Charudatta Pingale at around 12.30 p.m. There my desire to offer obeisance by placing my head on His holy feet was fulfilled. Sattvik spiritual emotion was awakened in me the moment my head touched His holy feet. For a few seconds I experienced Bliss and felt extremely pleasant. – Sadhika

B. Repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name commencing spontaneously, awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion and experiencing divine consciousness (chaitanya) and Bliss (Anand) after looking at the galvaniser machine touched by Doctor: A galvaniser machine belonging to Mrs. Aditi Joshi was placed in the bedroom of Dr. (Mrs.) Nanda Sawant in the ashram (hermitage). When H.H. Doctor entered that room to experiment on distressing energies, He touched the machine along with other objects over there. The next day that machine was packed in a box and sent to Sangli.

     Mrs. Aditi Joshi from Sangli district experienced the following after looking at the device.

  • Tears flowed from her eyes on opening the box.
  • She experienced Bliss.
  • The machine which she earlier perceived as devoid of divine consciousness (chaitanya) was now enriched with it.

     Dr. (Sadhika) from the same ashram experienced the following after looking at it.

  • The moment she opened the box, her repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name occurred spontaneously.
  • The machine appeared more radiant and enriched with divine consciousness than before.

4.2 By a discourse

Developing goose-flesh and entering a state just prior to meditation during Doctor’s discourse: Despite absence of chilly weather on 15th November 1997, when listening to H.H. Doctor’s discourse I developed goose-flesh. I was also yawning continuously. As I left the venue of the discourse the yawning stopped. – Sadhika

(Before entering into a meditative state from the waking state some people start yawning. – Compilers)

4.3 By a holy vision (darshan)

A. Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion after a vision of Doctor: After H.H. Doctor arrived at Pophali on 2nd January 1997, Mr. Nalavade introduced seekers from different centres to Him. I too was invited. Though I offered obeisance to H.H. Doctor, I was speechless. All of a sudden my ear lobes became warm, my whole body became light and I felt as if I were floating in air. – Sadhak

B. Perceiving the affectionate touch and words of assurance from H.H. Doctor before the discourse, perception of Doctor’s countenance as expansive and radiant and awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion during the discourse: When I got the pleasant news of H.H. Doctor’s discourse to be held on 16th November 1997, I realised that it was a golden opportunity dawning in my life. Though I was elated I was also apprehensive about whether I would reach there in time for the discourse due to our scheduled trip to Rajasthan. My mind was riddled with doubts. No matter what, I should not miss H.H. Doctor’s discourse and the opportunity to pay obeisance to Him was what I felt. My repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name was going on. When in this restless state I felt an affectionate pat on my back trying to cool down my upset mind. Then I heard a voice saying, “I will not leave without meeting you, if not this time some other time, but I will certainly meet you.” I looked around but saw no one. Throughout the journey I repeated (chanted) The Lord’s Name continuously and the trip which was supposed to conclude on 18th or 19th ended on the 15th itself and we returned to Ichalkaranji. I was waiting for 16th November to dawn. Though I had lost the opportunity to render service, the chance of having the holy vision of a saint was no less important. I reached the venue long before the discourse began. I was very eager to see this saint. Then this extremely fortunate moment of my life arrived. His vision was such that I had never seen before. His countenance appeared expansive, divine and radiant. Thereafter I was unable to understand the reason why I began to feel like crying uncontrollably. Tears swelled in my eyes and I had to stuff a handkerchief into my mouth to prevent the sobs. This state and restlessness persisted for quite some time. Thereafter just as a stormy sea suddenly becomes tranquil, my body too became extremely serene and all these feelings ceased. Even today once in a while, H.H. Doctor’s face suddenly appears before me and the mind bows to Him in obeisance. Sometimes I also get restless and feel like crying aloud without any reason. There is only one goal in my mind – when will I be liberated? When will I attain the Final Liberation (Moksha)? – Sadhika

4.4 Due to the presence

Sattvik spiritual emotion remaining awakened for the entire week during Doctor’s visit to the district: It was only two months since I had begun repeating (chanting) the Name of my family deity when I got an opportunity to serve at H.H. Doctor’s programmes in Sangli. On 18th November 1997 from 6 a.m. onwards I was getting goose-flesh every two to five minutes. This continued till the completion of H.H. Doctor’s Sangli tour which lasted for a week. – Sadhak

4.5 By watching a video cassette

Weeping and feeling gratitude for Doctor on seeing His holy vision for the first time on a video cassette: When I saw H.H. Doctor on the video cassette for the first time I could not stop myself from crying. It continued for about 5 minutes and was totally beyond my control. I was really overcome by gratitude. – One seeker

4.6 By seeing a photograph

Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion on seeing Doctor’s photograph and perceiving that He is speaking: A seeker gave me a copy of H.H. Doctor’s photograph which I kept in our showcase. Once when looking at the photograph amidst repetition (chanting) of the Name of my family deity, suddenly tears started flowing from my eyes. I also felt as if H.H. Doctor were conversing with me. – Master Hemant , Children’s moral education class

4.7 While reading, by a holy text

Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion when reading a holy text compiled by Doctor and at other times as well: I was preparing a discourse with points 1 to 4 from the book ‘The Disciple’. I read the sections a second time. As I read the sentence, ‘However, since the Guru imparts knowledge of the soul principle (atmadnyan) no matter how much one does for Him, it is still far too little’ I was full of gratitude for the Guru and felt like weeping without any inhibition. [My basic personality being introverted I rarely remember having cried but ever since I began repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name, I have cried on several occasions. Most of the times these were tears of Bliss (Anand).] This incident was followed by expansive love for others, especially for God (and the Guru). – One seeker 

4.8 By repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name

State of spiritual emotion when repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name, looking at Doctor’s photograph and when thinking of Him: On 14th March 1998, in the morning when bathing, my eyes swelled with tears. It would happen to a greater extent when repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name. Even merely remembering H.H. Doctor, thinking about Him or seeing His photograph would make my eyes swell with tears which would increase in intensity. I experienced a lot of Bliss at that time. Tears flowed uncontrollably. This continued for about 20 to 25 minutes. – Sadhak

4.9 Through remembrance

A. Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion and experiencing a state of thoughtlessness on remembering Doctor: After Gurupaurnima, I no longer experienced the Bliss that I felt for several days. I now felt very serene. My eyes would swell with tears after remembering H.H. Doctor. Throughout the celebrations and for 2 to 3 days thereafter I remained in this state and in between also experienced thoughtlessness. Often I would be totally unaware of what was going on around me. – Sadhika

B. Awakening of spiritual emotion after becoming aware that Doctor Himself was serving seekers through me: Once as I stood with a plate of food in front of a seeker in whom a distressing energy had manifested the thought that crossed my mind was, ‘See how much H.H. Doctor loves this seeker. He is standing in front of her with a plate of food.’ It was as if instead of me, H.H. Doctor Himself was doing the task and tears swelled in my eyes. – Sadhika

C. Spiritual experience of Doctor coming for lunch when one harbours such a spiritual emotion and Doctor speaking to me: On 15th October 2002, the day of Dasra, I offered food unto God. At that time, I perceived that H.H. Doctor was none other than God and that he would manifest simultaneously that day in four places, viz. the four ashrams (hermitages) of the Sanstha at Phonda, Devad, Thane and Sion. I know that my Guru eats lunch at about 12.30 p.m. If food is not served to Him on time then after lunch time elapses, He hardly eats. Keeping this in mind, I quickly cooked for Him from 12 noon to 12.30 p.m. and was totally engrossed in it. Then I served the holy sacrament (naivedya) in two plates for H.H. Doctor and H.H. Maharaj because the latter led the former to Absoluteness, who became my Guru. I then informed Mr. Dinesh Shinde about the food being ready. Mr. Shinde requested me to offer the food myself. The moment I stepped back into the kitchen, I became aware of the presence of H.H. Doctor seated in a chair to eat. ‘I’ stood next to Him to serve Him. About 15 seconds later, H.H. Doctor told me to go about my chores and that He would help Himself. It was only then that I realised that ‘I’ had been standing there to serve Him. – Sadhika

4.10 Spiritual experiences during meditation of seekers having spiritual emotion

A. Aura of flowers surrounding Doctor seen in meditation by a seeker, after a prayer unto Him: On 11th January 2003 during meditation, I perceived red and white flowers alternately sticking onto the body of H.H. Doctor. I prayed to the flowers not to trouble H.H. Doctor in this way. That very moment, an aura of the flowers formed around H.H. Doctor. – Sadhika

B. When praying to Doctor in meditation, seeing His feet and hibiscus flowers falling onto them and the seeker cutting their stalks to prevent them from hurting Doctor: On 12th October 2002, I was repeating (chanting) the Name of Lord Ganapati. All of a sudden, the thought whether my repetition (chanting) was reaching The Lord entered my mind. I recollected that on the previous day we had been told that if we offer the repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name unto the Guru then He delivers it to The Lord. So I prayed unto H.H. Doctor to deliver it unto Lord Ganapati. At that point, I saw the holy feet of H.H. Doctor and red hibiscus flowers falling onto them. These flowers had long stalks which would hurt H.H. Doctor’s feet. So I prayed that they first fall in my hands so that I could shorten the stalks and then offer them unto H.H. Doctor’s feet. As I offered one flower, the previous one would vanish from there. This continued for half an hour. During this period, tears continuously flowed from my eyes and my eyes felt cool and serene. – Sadhika

C. When a seeker doubted during meditation whether her heart was deserving of Doctor’s presence, her getting a vision of Maharaj and Doctor seated on a carpet of flowers therein: On 13th October 2002 during meditation, I felt that I should request H.H. Doctor to assume a seat in my heart despite a chair being reserved for H.H. Doctor in the meditation room. The next thought in my mind was, is my heart pure and clean enough for H.H. Doctor to assume a seat in it? That very moment I saw yellow and red flowers being spread in abundance all over my heart and H.H. Maharaj and H.H. Doctor sitting on them. – Sadhika

D. Awakening of spiritual emotion during meditation after a prayer for Doctor due to realisation that the Gurus in the hierarchy are keeping a watch over Him: On 18th October 2002, I was meditating at the Ratnagiri ashram (hermitage) at about 7.30 a.m. During meditation, I entered H.H. Doctor’s room and placed my head on His feet. The moment I did that I realised that He was not well. Usually after worshipping His feet by repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name, I would go to the Dhamse ashram to pay obeisance to the deities there but that day I just could not let go of H.H. Doctor’s feet though I was well aware that I could do nothing for Him. Then I fervently started praying unto H.H. Maharaj (the Guru of H.H. Doctor) and H.H. Saish (the Guru of H.H. Maharaj). After sometime, I was overwhelmed realising from within that They were all keeping a watch on Him. It also dawned upon me that other than acquiring His grace, there can be no other mission or objective in life. His grace bestows one with everything in the world. If one achieves everything in life but not the Guru’s grace then it is all in vain. Ever since, when repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name or meditating I cannot leave His feet and go elsewhere. Whenever I think of The Lord’s Name, I realise that I am at the feet of H.H. Doctor. – Sadhika

E. Awakening of spiritual emotion after realising that Doctor was teaching me during meditation: On 11th October 2002 at 10 p.m. during meditation, I realised that a combat with distressing energies was going on outside. I prayed once again so that I could meditate with concentration and also that my prayer should reach H.H. Doctor and that I should get a vision of His holy feet. Yet H.H. Doctor did not come. Then I prayed, ‘May things occur as Your wish.’ Thereafter I felt the presence of a tremendous benevolent energy. From within, it was suggested that I should repeat (chant) the Name of Lord Maruti. When I complied, Lord Maruti assumed my place. I could perceive His tremendous effulgence. I was not distinct from Him. But I wondered why H.H. Doctor had done this and what He wished to teach through this. At that moment, I thought about Kolhapur and H.H. Doctor uttered ‘Dr. Surendra’ (the Sanstha’s in-charge of propagating Spirituality in Kolhapur). Then all of a sudden during meditation I began to cry. When I prayed unto Lord Maruti, He took me to Kolhapur and in the meditative state itself, spiritual emotion was awakened within me. – Sadhak

F. Doctor telling me during meditation that He would speak to me when I begin repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name with spiritual emotion: On 17th October 2002 during meditation, H.H. Doctor said, ‘If you wish to converse with Me then repeat (chant) the Name of Lord Ganesh with spiritual emotion.’ After doing so, a red light from my head advanced towards the picture of H.H. Maharaj and then H.H. Doctor began to converse with me. I realised that H.H. Doctor was experiencing distress. Later I learnt that that day at the Phonda ashram (hermitage) in Goa where H.H. Doctor resides, the attack by distressing energies had grown. – Sadhak

G. Due to spiritual emotion, Doctor proving to a seeker during meditation that her repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name was being delivered unto Lord Shiva by causing her subtle body to travel: On 11th October 2002, when in the Dhamse ashram, I was told to repeat (chant) ‘Om namaha Shivaya’. When repeating (chanting) it during the meditation hour in the afternoon, I saw myself entering H.H. Doctor’s room as usual and offering obeisance unto His holy feet before I began repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name. The thought that crossed by mind then was, ‘How can I offer red flowers and tulsi leaves unto Lord Shiva?’ Then I noticed that my worship platter had large white lotuses in it ! With repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name each time, I would offer one flower unto H.H. Doctor’s holy feet. The next thought in my mind was, ‘Is it appropriate to offer these flowers which grow in the muck to H.H. Doctor?’ From within, the answer that I received was, ‘Offer the lotus of Your heart’ and lo and behold, there was a beautiful lotus in place of my heart. I offered it at H.H. Doctor’s feet with intense spiritual emotion. Just then I wondered whether the repetition (chanting) I was doing was reaching Lord Shiva and looked upto H.H. Doctor. Though I did not speak a word, He smiled sweetly and pointing upwards said, ‘See for yourself’. When I did so, just as a rocket leaves the ground at high speed I began to rise. Despite travelling at such a high speed, there were no bodily movements. I cannot tell exactly where I reached but there from above there was a continuous flow of serene yellow light descending. I bathed in it and then automatically felt assured that my repetition (chanting) was being delivered to Lord Shiva. (I wonder how I was convinced of this when normally I analyse everything with my intellect.) – Sadhika

5. Awakening of spiritual emotion (bhav) due to deities

A. Awakening of sattvik (sattva predominant) spiritual emotion through prayer: I prayed to The Lord to manifest Himself and instantaneously experienced an internal upsurge of devotion and love. – One Seeker

B. Losing awareness of the body before offering obeisance to the family deity, awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion while offering obeisance and repetition (chanting) of Her Name occurring instead of hymns (arti): It was our first visit to the temple of the family deity at Tuljapur after coming to know that She was our family deity. As I stood in a queue waiting to pay obeisance to Her my repetition (chanting) of Her Name was going on. Gradually as the queue moved ahead we approached the entrance. At that time my repetition (chanting) of Her Name began to occur rapidly. I was not aware of when the people ahead of me in the queue moved 5 feet ahead. It was only when the other devotees behind called out to me that I came to my senses. I entered the temple and consecrated Her idol by sprinkling water (abhishek). I then came out and thinking of H.H. Doctor, offered obeisance to the deity. The Bliss that I experienced when I saw Her idol is indescribable. My eyes swelled with tears. After the ritualistic worship (puja) the priest asked us to sing a hymn (arti) in praise of the deity which I began as I knew it by rote. I somehow managed to sing the first two lines but thereafter instead of the hymn I began rapidly repeating (chanting) the Name of the deity. – Sadhak

C. Subtle fragrance emanating from the picture of Lord Datta, awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion by repeating (chanting) His Name and seeing the deities Brahma, Shrivishnu and Mahesh conversing in the picture of Lord Datta: Once I perceived fragrance emanating from the picture of Lord Datta. As I repeated (chanted) ‘Shri Gurudev Datta’ seated in front of the picture, no sooner had I finished half of the first turn of the mala (Hindu rosary) than all of a sudden I began to sob. The tears that fell on my left hand were cold. As I reached the eight and ninth turn of the mala, the idol of Lord Datta in the picture appeared to smile at me. I too smiled. Thereafter Brahma, Shrivishnu and Mahesh separated from the idol and began to discuss something loudly and pointing towards me, laughed aloud. The Bliss (Anand) which I experienced after repeating (chanting) the ninth turn of the mala is beyond verbal description. – Sadhika   (Sattvik tears are cold and while tears of grief are warm. – Compilers)

6. Awakening of spiritual emotion due to Sanstha

6.1 Sanstha Prabhat

Awakening of sattvik (sattva predominant) spiritual emotion by the Sanstha Prabhat: As usual, on waking up in the morning, I opened the door to see if the ‘Daily Sanstha Prabhat’ had been delivered. Just then I saw a seeker of the Sanstha coming to deliver it. When I held the Gurupaurnima special issue in my hand, I experienced something quite unusual. As I browsed through its four pages, I experienced a different kind of Bliss and felt pleasant. As I kept it on the table, unknowingly I folded my hands in obeisance. Perception of the divine consciousness (chaitanya) in it brought tears to my eyes. The same spiritual emotion which was awakened within me when I offered the ritual of waving lit lamps (arti) unto H.H. Anand Maharaj last month, was aroused once again. – Sadhak

6.2 Demonstration of the spiritual practice of protecting seekers and destroying evildoers (kshatradharma)

Awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion during a rally demonstrating the spiritual practice of protecting seekers and destroying evildoers and feeling assured about the destruction of evildoers: The display of karate and stick (lathi) fighting was held at the December 1999 rally for the first time. After seeing the rally, I just could not control my sobs. My eyes swelled with tears again and again. My ears became hot and there was goose-flesh all over my body. This is the first instance in my life when I have been aroused by patriotism. I could perceive a great deal of divine consciousness in the atmosphere. The faith that evildoers would be certainly destroyed was strengthened further. – Sadhika

6.3 Ashram (hermitage)

A. Developing goose-flesh and hearing war songs (kshatragit) when viewing a photograph of the model of the Sanstha ashram: When I saw a photograph of the model of the Sanstha ashram made by Mr. Patil, a seeker of the Sanstha, in the daily Sanstha Prabhat, I developed goose-flesh and heard the lines ‘there is no injustice or corruption here’ and ‘all are one here; none is great or small’ from the war song ‘Hail Sanstha, Hail Sanstha’, ring in my ears (as if an audio cassette were being played in the ashram) and my eyes swelled with tears. Though I had developed goose-flesh and experienced divine consciousness (chaitanya) when I had looked at the photograph of the model of the ashram (hermitage) in the souvenir, seeing the picture of the model in the daily induced more goose-flesh in me. – Sadhak

B. Overcoming exhaustion after arrival at the office of the Sanstha Prabhat and perceiving the ambience there to be akin to that in a temple: We reached the office of the Sanstha Prabhat after travelling by bus continuously, without any sleep for two days. We were exhausted as we had been sleepless. The moment we stepped into the office we felt as if we had entered a temple. There was a lot of purity and sattvikta (sattva predominant atmosphere) there. This pleasantness got rid of our exhaustion instantaneously and we began to feel fresh once again. – Prof. Shrikant Bhat, Akola

7. Awakening of spiritual emotion at a saint’s tomb / temple

A. Seeker being able to see the state of spiritual emotion in another seeker at a saint’s tomb (samadhi) despite his eyes being closed: I was travelling to Sangli along with my wife and mother-in-law. On the way we halted at the tomb (samadhi) of the Saint to pay obeisance. When we reached there it was time for performing the ritual of waving lit lamps (arti) and singing hymns. Unexpectedly I was endowed with the opportunity of performing it by the priest. As I performed the ritual with my eyes shut, I could clearly see  mother-in-laws serene face. When I opened my eyes in amazement, I saw tears rolling down her cheeks due to awakening of spiritual emotion (bhav). – One seeker

B. Perceiving that a seeker is accompanying me at the Ramnathi temple in Goa, so also while travelling and awakening of sattvik (sattva predominant) spiritual emotion: When I went to the Ramnathi temple, I felt a surge of spiritual emotion and tears started flowing from my eyes. At that time I sensed the presence of one seeker with me and realised what they must have experienced at the Gurupaurnima of 1993. – One seeker

8. Awakening of spiritual emotion during Gurupaurnima

A. A vision of H.H. Maharaj, awakening of sattvik spiritual emotion and the holy water tasting like the water from the ritualistic worship of the holy feet of H.H. Maharaj: We were allotted the service of performing ritualistic worship of the Guru at the Gurupaurnima of 2000 A.D. As the worship began, I alternately saw holy visions of H.H. Maharaj and H.H. Dr. along with their holy feet. This induced goose-flesh all over my body and my eyes swelled with tears. After completion of all rituals, we began singing hymns amidst waving of lit lamps (arti). My husband was waving a lamp lit with five wicks in front of the top of the temple rather than the photograph of Baba. When I whispered to Him and asked about it, he said he could see Baba. After completion of the concluding ritual in the ritualistic worship (uttar puja), I offered my husband the holy water from the metal pot (kalash). After partaking of it he said, “At the Dhule Gurupaurnima, I had partaken of the holy water from the feet of H.H. Maharaj and that tasted exactly like this.” – Sadhika

B. Seeing Doctor actually sitting in front of me and performing the ritualistic worship of His holy feet (padyapuja) with spiritual emotion as the audio cassette of ritualistic worship was being played at the Gurupaurnima celebrations: As I heard the audio cassette of the ritualistic worship of the Guru, spontaneously my hands got folded in obeisance and my eyes closed. Thereafter I did not perceive anyone’s presence around me. I felt that Doctor was seated in a chair clothed in a white kurta and that I was performing ritualistic worship as per instructions given in the cassette. – Sadhika

9. Awakening of spiritual emotion due to trees, flowers, etc.

Seeker experiencing that even plants and flowers were experiencing Bliss (Anand) from sattvikta (sattva predominant nature): On 13th April 2003, Dr. (Mrs.) Nanda Sawant had delivered a discourse at the Shrirang centre. After it concluded, as she was waiting to leave for the Thane centre of the Sanstha, I perceived that the flower buds behind her were bending forwards to touch her. After the buds touched her, the twig containing the buds appeared very Blissful. My eyes swelled with tears. This incident taught me for the first time that even flowers and plants too acquire Bliss and divine consciousness from sattvikta. – Sadhika

 

Why do distressing energies trouble seekers undertaking samashti sadhana?

Contents


1. Examples to indicate seeker’s sojourn towards God realisation

Special features of Sanstha’s ‘Subtle section’: Sanstha undertakes a social mission, that is of propagating Righteousness (Dharma) in society. As a majority of seekers of Sanstha strive for the sake of society (samashti), presently many of them are tormented by distressing energies. The reason for this is as follows. Distressing energies generally do not trouble those undertaking individual spiritual practice because those energies are not bothered if a few individuals undertake spiritual practice and attain the Final Liberation (Moksha). However spiritual practice done for the sake of society inspires many people in society to undertake spiritual practice. When this happens, the sattva component in the atmosphere starts increasing and the tama predominant distressing energies are consequently troubled by it. It is therefore that they start harrassing seekers and pose obstacles in their spiritual practice for the sake of society. For protection from distressing energies, it is absolutely essential for seekers to repeat (chant) The Lord’s Name continuously along with spiritual emotion. It is also imperative that the seeker should have a lot of spiritual emotion towards The Lord. However, an average seeker does not have that much spiritual emotion for God and so his repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name too does not occur along with spiritual emotion. Such seekers are easily troubled by distressing energies. Sanstha has set up a ‘Subtle section’ with seekers having a greater potential to perceive from the subtle dimension and to combat distressing energies so as to protect other seekers from distressing energies and to eliminate spiritual obstacles in the path of propagation of Righteousness (Dharma). Seekers in this section, pray unto The Lord with spiritual emotion and repeat (chant) The Lord’s Name with intense spiritual emotion and yearning. They ask The Lord questions during meditation and repeat (chant) The Lord’s Name as advised by The Lord. When they repeat (chant) His Name, The Lord assumes forms of various deities according to the requirement to destroy the distressing energy and does so.

Every seeker will certainly be curious to know how seekers from the subtle section have developed such intense spiritual emotion for The Lord. That is precisely why the biographies of some seekers from the subtle section with regard to their spiritual emotion for God have been described in brief below. This will teach us the indepth subtle introspection of every event in life carried out by them so as to develop spiritual emotion for The Lord.

2. Mrs. Jaya Shrivastava, Subtle section

A. Even as a child, I always wondered whether the obeisance I offered unto God actually reached Him: In childhood I loved to read stories about deities. At times I attended kirtans (spiritual discourses along with hymns in praise of The Lord) with my grandmother. Whenever I offered obeisance unto God I would wonder whether it actually reached Him.

B. During telephonic conversations, my mother-in-law constantly kept me informed about the Sanstha and advised me to repeat (chant) The Lord’s Name: Within a few years of my marriage, that is since July 2000 my in-laws commenced spiritual practice. At that time they lived in Mumbai and I at Boisar in Thane district. Despite my mother-in-law repeatedly telling me over the telephone about Sanstha and advising me to repeat (chant) The Lord’s Name, I was unable to do it.

C. Elimination of all doubts about Sanstha after seeing a subtle vision of Doctor’s smiling face despite repeatedly calling Him a ‘fake saint’ and the vision disappearing once I accepted His true form: In August 2001, when I was visiting my-in-laws in Mumbai, a bhandara (festival of distributing food for a spiritual purpose) had been organised at their place. When I looked at a photograph of H.H. Doctor kept there, I thought that like several other holy men He too must be a fake. That night when I slept with my daughter in that room, I had a vision of H.H. Doctor’s face. He was smiling at me. Though I kept telling Him that He was a fake and did not even offer Him obeisance, He continued smiling at me. Finally I surrendered unto Him and accepted that He was genuine. It is only then that the vision of His face disappeared. Even since I have never had any doubt about the Sanstha.

D. A discourse delivered by Mr. Aakash Joshi, a chief seeker of Sanstha undertaking the spread of Spirituality creating a good impact on my mind: It is the discourse delivered by Mr. Prakash Joshi that impressed the concept of Spirituality onto my mind and that of my husband. It inspired us greatly to undertake spiritual practice.

E. The first holy vision (darshan) of Doctor generating spiritual emotion within me: When we visited the Sansthaashram (hermitage) in Goa in September 2001, we saw H.H. Doctor for the first time. I was overwhelmed with His first holy vision. It seemed as if I had found something which I had lost.

F. The Lord teaching me to do every task as spiritual practice after praying unto Him to teach me to do it: Since September 2001, I undertook full time spiritual practice at the Sanstha ashram in Goa. I began to pray to The Lord ‘Teach me to undertake every task as spiritual practice.’ Gradually The Lord started teaching me everything and then I started becoming aware that doing any task to perfection is itself true spiritual practice.

G. Prayer occurring unto The Lord to bestow me with spiritual knowledge and blend me with His Name and to always keep me at His holy feet: In December 2001, gradually I began to perceive everything in the ashram as mine. Once H.H. Doctor told me, “Music itself is your spiritual practice.” So, thereafter I would ask H.H. Doctor queries about music everyday. When He would reply to my queries, I would feel grateful towards Him and feel overwhelmed. The prayer that I would constantly recite from within would be, ‘Lord, make me merge into Your Name by bestowing me with spiritual knowledge and always keep me at Your holy feet’

H. The Lord teaching me to render service with spiritual emotion (bhav), through the medium of other seekers: Since August 2002, I have been making gradual attempts to inculcate the virtues of other seekers in the ashram within me. This constantly kept me Blissful. One day I asked God, ‘Lord from whom should I imbibe the quality of spiritual emotion? In response The Lord asked me to learn it from Miss Sushma , Miss Aparna and Miss Prachi. I began to study their facial expressions. As The Lord unravelled the secret of rendering service with spiritual emotion to me, I kept learning. Gradually my repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name increased. When repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name, I would see blue and yellow light before me.

I. The Lord granting me the opportunity to serve in the ‘Subtle section’ and my being able to perceive God in every seeker: By the grace of The Lord, in September 2002, I had the opportunity to render service in the subtle section. I was able to surrender every act unto God. Conversation with Him began to take place from within. I also started perceiving the presence of God in every seeker while talking to them. In fact, my prayer to The Lord became more often than my repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name. I learnt several things from H.H. Doctor. The desire for God realisation also grew. Whenever I shut my eyes during prayer or otherwise, I would see a blue and white circle. At times, I would see these circles even when the eyes were open. Slowly, God began to teach me how to ask questions and seek answers from Him.

J. The Lord endowing me with an opportunity to serve in the ‘Ego assuaging section’: In November 2002, while stressing on the need for seekers to lower their ego as soon as possible, H.H. Doctor said, “We are going to publish a booklet on ego. So, make some compilation on it on the computer.” When I sat down to compile them on the computer after praying to God, several concepts spontaneously emerged in my mind and I typed them. A discourse was compiled on this too. On several occasions, I have experienced that a mere resolve of The Lord is sufficient to accomplish a task.

K. Being able to draw pictures of ghosts after a prayer: In April 2003, despite not knowing how to draw, when I prayed I was able to draw sketches of ghosts spontaneously.

L. Getting the greatest spiritual experience of that of The Lord teaching me quickly to do everything: As I performed any task as soon as I was told by H.H. Doctor, The Lord began to teach me things instantly. This is my greatest spiritual experience. I pray unto The Lord to grant me the opportunity to learn something new continuously and to teach other seekers to undertake holistic spiritual practice.

3. Miss Aparna Barne, Subtle section

A. Curiosity about deities and saints and repetition (chanting) of the Name of Lord Shiva since childhood: My father always told me stories about deities. I liked reading holy verses (pothi) as well. Since twelve years of age, I would contemplate on where God was, what He looked like, what I had to do to merge with Him, etc. Using my intellect, with the intention of realising God, I began to repeat (chant) the Name of my favourite deity, i.e. Lord Shiva since childhood. I was curious about how people attained sainthood, Their mission in life, whether I would be able to achieve sainthood, etc.

B. Feeling that ‘H.H. Doctor is The Lord that I was thinking about for so long’ after seeing Him for the first time at a public discourse: We were financially not well-off. Since childhood I would narrate everything to The Lord. My brother attended satsangs (spiritual meetings) organised by the Sanstha. He would advise me to repeat (chant) the Name of our family deity. However since Lord Shiva was my favourite, I did not follow his counsel. When my father expired, for eight days and nights I repeated (chanted) the Name of our family deity. After a fortnight, I attended the public discourse delivered by H.H. Doctor at Bicholim, Goa. The moment I saw Him, I knew He was The Lord I was thinking about. I was sure I would find everything at His feet. Prior to this, I had neither seen a picture of H.H. Doctor nor heard of His Name.

C. My repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name occurring smoothly after this vision of Doctor and development of an attitude of learning from other seekers after beginning to stay in the ashram (hermitage): Ever since I saw H.H. Doctor, my repetition (chanting) of my family deity’s Name occurred smoothly. Within a month, the Sanstha started satsangs in our village. I felt as if The Lord had begun them for my sake. I received further spiritual guidance from Mr. Suraj Joshi. In the beginning I got opportunities to deliver the ‘Prabhat’ to subscribers, to set up bookstalls of the Sanstha and to propagate Spirituality along with other seekers in order to conduct any programme organised by the Sanstha. Since I would be away from home to render service, my family began to oppose these activities of mine. Thereafter I was endowed with the opportunity of serving in the ashram at Goa for eight hours everyday. Although I did not know anything about the service there, I always harboured the attitude of learning from the other seekers in the ashram.

D. Family opposition to my spiritual practice and my prayer to The Lord being answered in the form of receiving permission from my mother to serve The Lord: As I would remain outside home while rendering service most of the time, my family began to oppose this. They had a meeting and decided to stop me from all such activity. However when I prayed unto The Lord, my mother gave me permission to render service.

E. Feeling the presence of divine qualities in every seeker and realising that The Lord is teaching me something through the medium of that seeker: When rendering service in the ashram, I would perceive the qualities of The Lord in every seeker and would become aware that He is teaching me something through the medium of that seeker. Dr. Sawant gave me further guidance in spiritual practice. In the ashram, I was allotted the task of looking after the reception counter. When doing this task if someone lost his temper with me, I would converse with H.H. Maharaj whose photograph was in the room. At that time, I would feel as if I were narrating everything to none other than H.H. Doctor.

F. Intense faith in God that He will ferry me across through service alone and also sensing that this ashram is akin to that of ancient sages: Through little incidents H.H. Doctor taught me how to undertake spiritual practice. I would constantly remain aware that this is a divine mission and that H.H. Doctor was getting this task done from me. That is why no matter what the nature of the service was, I was always in Bliss (Anand) when doing it. I firmly believed that it is through this service itself that God would make me progress on the spiritual path. My spiritual emotion towards all the seekers was the same as it was for H.H. Doctor. I would feel that we seekers in the ashram (hermitage) were indulging in spiritual practice in a group just as the ancient sages did in their times.

G. Doctor advising me that my motivation to realise God should increase and my harbouring the spiritual emotion (bhav) that God is teaching through every incident: Once H.H. Doctor told me that my motivation to realise God should increase. This taught me how I needed to develop the attitude of learning. It is The Lord Himself who provides guidance and gets a task performed from oneself. God only expects one to make efforts. That is why I harboured the spiritual emotion that The Lord Himself teaches me through every incident.

H. Divine consciousness (chaitanya) from The Lord entering through the Sahasrar chakra of the kundalini (spiritual energy) and Doctor telling me that my human life has been fulfilled by joining Sanstha: As I was able to render service amidst repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name, I experienced Bliss continuously. Once during meditation, I experienced that my Sahasrar chakra in the head opened and divine consciousness began to enter through it. When I narrated this to H.H. Doctor He said, “Your life has been fulfilled by joining Sanstha.” At that time, I prayed to The Lord to perpetually keep me at His holy feet.

I. Opportunity to serve in the ‘Subtle section’ of the Sanstha and my prayer unto The Lord to grant every seeker, the opportunity to learn so as to evolve spiritually: By the grace of The Lord, I got an opportunity to serve in the ‘Subtle section’. My prayer unto the Guru would occur spontaneously as per the need of the seeker. H.H. Doctor sent me to the in-charge of the ‘Subtle section’ in Sangli, Dr.(Sadhika) to learn. There I learnt how spiritual practice for the sake of the society (samashti) should be done, how to speak and behave with distressing energies, the nature of the saviour and destroyer forms of The Lord, etc. My earnest prayer unto The Lord is to teach me something new through every incident and to grant every seeker similar opportunities so as to make spiritual progress.

4. Miss Prachi Rathi, Subtle section, Goa

A. Liking for deities since childhood: I liked deities a lot specially Lord Ganapati and Lord Shrikrushna since childhood. [All seekers of the Sanstha repeat (chant) the Names of these two deities to nullify the black magic done on the Sanstha.] I loved to hear and read stories about deities and developed an intense desire to see God. After reading stories about saints, I would wonder whether I too would be able to have such intense devotion for The Lord.

B. Habit of praying since childhood: I used to pray since childhood. In the beginning, I would pray for myself, then my family and later on after I began spiritual practice I began to pray for other seekers too.

C. Habit of behaving as per other’s wishes: From the very beginning, I was habituated to doing things as others wished and not as per my own wishes.

D. Feeling that God is doing everything for my sake when satsangs (spiritual meetings) were commenced near my residence: Though I had faith in God, I did not like to attend satsangs. Once when visiting my relatives, they coaxed me to attend a satsang which was being held in a temple quite far away from their residence but I refused flatly. However for some reason, the venue was changed suddenly to a Ganapati temple just two minutes away from their residence. Once again they asked me to attend the satsang. Then I thought, ‘God has shifted the venue of the satsang nearby only for my sake. God is doing so much for me but I am not even looking at Him!’ Ever since, I started attending satsangs regularly. After attending satsangs once or twice, I developed a liking for them.

E. An opportunity to serve Doctor in the Goa ashram and His guiding my spiritual practice appropriately: After attending a few satsangs, I received further guidance in spiritual practice from Mr. Prakash. At first, I got a chance to serve at the bookstalls of the Sanstha and to propagate Spirituality along with other seekers to organise any programme of the Sanstha. Thereafter, I got an opportunity to serve in the ashram at Goa full time. I harboured the attitude of learning from other seekers, since I did not know anything about that form of service. When H.H. Doctor started living in the ashram, I got an opportunity to serve Him. It is at this point that true spiritual emotion was generated within me. H.H. Doctor Himself guided me further in spiritual practice appropriately. He taught me how to learn through minor incidents.

F. Prayer unto Doctor to perpetually keep me at His holy feet and to enhance my attitude to learn: If someone shouted at me when rendering service, I would feel hurt and weep. I would however narrate all this to H.H. Doctor in my mind and ask Him for strength to endure the grief. I would also pray to Him to always keep me at His holy feet and to make me develop the attitude of learning new things.

G. Spiritual emotion for H.H. Doctor: Sometimes I would sit all by myself and recollect H.H. Doctor’s conversations and behaviour. I would think about a funny incident through which He tried to teach me something and smile to myself. When talking about Him I would get overwhelmed. I could never find enough words to narrate to others what I wanted to say about H.H. Doctor.

H. Not feeling inferior while performing any kind of service: I never felt inferior when rendering service of any kind. On the contrary, I would be aware that I would make spiritual progress only through the service allotted to me according to God’s wish.

I. Feeling unhappy that I had troubled The Lord Himself if other seekers were disturbed by my behaviour: If other seekers were adversely affected because of any of my mistakes, I would feel unhappy as if I had troubled The Lord Himself.

J. Feeling Doctor’s tender touch on my head when rendering service and my eyes swelling with tears on remembering Him: When serving H.H. Doctor, unless I did a task to perfection, I would feel dissatisfied. My mind constantly became aware of what I had to do to win the grace of H.H. Doctor and to progress spiritually. No matter how hard I worked all day through, I would be enthusiastic about still rendering more service. When doing so, H.H. Doctor’s affectionate hand would fondle my head (subtly) and thinking about Him would make me cry.

K. Perceiving every seeker as a miniature form of The Lord and Sanstha to be one big family: I had the same spiritual emotion for other seekers as I had for H.H. Doctor. I always felt that ‘Every seeker is a miniature form of The Lord and Sanstha is one big family. All the seekers in that family are my siblings. I am a part of that family and The Lord has drawn me into it.’

L. God endowing me with further knowledge due to constant prayer to The Lord: I always perceived myself as a medium when performing any task and The Lord Himself as the doer of everything. We are mere puppets in His hands and our movements are manipulated by Him. Whenever I began a task, I would pray unto The Lord to get it done as per His expectations. With time, The Lord would suggest how to pray unto the Guru, how my service would be effective, how to establish a rapport with seekers, etc. As I kept praying unto The Lord constantly, He went on imparting me with further knowledge.

5. Miss Sushma Mane, Subtle section, Goa

5.1 Love and faith for God since childhood

A. Contemplation and worship of God since childhood: Since childhood, I loved listening to stories about deities. I would get so absorbed in them that I would literally forget myself at that time. I loved God very much. I often wondered what He looked like. I would fight and talk to Him because of our poverty. It is since childhood that I have been worshipping God.

B. Even as a child, feeling that I have no one other than God and that He alone can do everything: I believe that I have no one other than God. Only He can do everything for me and that I should do exactly as He desires. If I were rude to someone, I felt it would hurt The Lord. If family members fought, then God Himself would punish them is what I always felt in childhood.

5.2 Motivation to undertake spiritual practice

A. Intense motivation to undertake spiritual practice after reading the holy text ‘The Disciple’ published by Sanstha: When studying in class XII, I commenced attending satsangs (spiritual meetings) conducted by Sanstha. Then, I was not very convinced about the importance of spiritual practice. I was only aware about repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name. Since I loved studying, I read the holy text ‘The Disciple’ published by the Sanstha. When I read about how a disciple should behave, what qualities he should inculcate in himself, how the Guru assists him in life, etc. my spiritual emotion of gratitude for the Guru increased and I cried. This was followed by augmentation in my motivation to undertake spiritual practice. I made a firm resolve to make great efforts so as to become a good disciple. It is at this juncture that my spiritual practice began in the true sense.

B. Having the singular objective of spiritual practice just as Arjun saw only one eye of the bird which was his target: When I tried to devote all my time to spiritual practice, my mother opposed me a lot. She began to make me aware of my duties. But I yearned to do spiritual practice. My state was akin to Arjun seeing only one eye of the bird, his target.

5.3 Spiritual emotion for God

A. Feeling affectionate towards my mother despite her beating me for returning home late at night and harbouring the spiritual emotion (bhav) that God Himself was giving me the strength to endure all this: My mother was opposed to my spiritual practice. Once I attended the discourse delivered by Mr. Prakash Joshi (a chief seeker of the Sanstha propagating Spirituality). Since I came home late, my mother beat me up. Yet I did not feel anything about it and felt that it was God who was giving me the strength to endure all this.

B. Surrendering my worldly duties which my mother was making me aware of, unto God: When I tried to devote all my time to spiritual practice, I had to face stiff opposition from my mother. She began to make me aware of my duties. So I prayed unto God, ‘I wish to do only spiritual practice. I do not want anything else in life. Since You are the doer and caretaker of everything in the universe, I surrender all my duties unto Your holy feet.’

C. Harbouring the spiritual emotion that everything will be well by the grace of The Lord despite severe opposition from my mother towards my practising Spirituality: Since I rendered service unto the Absolute Truth (satseva) every evening after work, I would reach home only by 9.30 p.m. When I returned home, my mother would reprimand me saying, “You neither work nor render service towards God. Stay at home alone.” My mother’s resistance towards my spiritual practice was growing. On the other hand, my resolve to devote all my time to Spirituality was becoming stronger. I would narrate every encounter of mine with my mother to The Lord and weep at His feet. At the same time, every moment I harboured the spiritual emotion that God was testing me and He alone would do everything.

D. Strengthening of the spiritual emotion that ‘other than God, no one will help me’ to become a full time seeker because of lack of help from others: After a few days I was removed from my job. Even at that time I would pray, ‘I do not desire any worldly pleasures. If only I get a chance to render service unto the Absolute Truth then it will be equivalent to all the worldly pleasures in the world.’ Time and again, I told all the seekers from Bicholim that I wished to become a full time seeker. However the seeker in-charge there did not pay any heed to my requests due to my mother’s opposition. This augmented my spiritual emotion that none other than The Lord Himself would help me.

E. Feeling that The Lord is testing me when rebuked by another seeker: Once, despite a seeker reprimanding me, I did not feel upset. On the contrary, I felt that it was God Himself who was scolding me and testing whether I could continue spiritual practice in these circumstances as well. I would tell The Lord, ‘I am Your servant. Anyone who tries to boss over me is my master.’

F. Feeling that even for development of the awareness that God is getting everything done from oneself, one needs to be that much devoted unto Him: The only place where one can seek shelter is the holy feet of The Lord. To realise that actually God is the doer, that He is getting everything done from oneself, one needs to harbour that much devotion unto Him.

5.4 Seeing God in others

A. Feeling love for my mother as a form of The Lord, despite her rebuking and beating me because I went to render service unto God: Though I had intense yearning to become a full time seeker from within, my mother wanted me to take up a job. I would undertake the task of searching for a job, as service unto the Guru. In fact, I would pray to God for a job in Bicholim (the seeker resides at Bicholim). The motive behind that prayer was to get free time after my job so that I could undertake the task of propagating Spirituality. Though outwardly I was searching for a job, inwardly I knew all along that I wanted to only undertake spiritual practice. People who had started searching for jobs later than me would find them but I remained without one. When I would return home jobless, my mother would rebuke me severely saying, “Your destiny itself is bad.” Since I harboured the spiritual emotion (bhav) that my mother was also a form of The Lord, no matter how much she reprimanded me I always felt affection for her.

B. Harbouring the spiritual emotion that The Lord Himself was allotting me various tasks in the form of different seekers: When any seeker allotted me a task, I would feel that The Lord Himself was asking me to do it. I would also feel that The Lord was allotting it to me knowing that I would certainly do it.

C. Feeling bad and crying that I had insulted The Lord when I was rude to someone: If occasionally I happened to speak harshly to a seeker, I would feel deeply hurt and cry from within thinking that I had insulted The Lord Himself.

5.5 Spiritual emotion towards the Guru

A. Constantly praying unto The Lord to make me sing the glory of my Guru all the time: I constantly pray, ‘O Lord, please do not let me talk about my worldly happiness. May I only praise my Guru. May my eyes see only my Guru’s form.’

B. Avoiding talking to Doctor so as not to trouble Him despite knowing fully well that doing so would eliminate my distress as experienced earlier: On 6th May 2003, I attended the annual religious festival (jatra) of deity Lairai at Asnoda in Goa. From the very next day, I developed physical distress. On many occasions before, merely speaking to H.H. Doctor had relieved me of such physical pain hence I secretly wished that He would phone so that I could speak to Him. Finally I did telephone Him but did not get the connection. Then from within, The Lord spoke thus, ‘I endow you with energy through My subtle form and take care of you through My gross form in the form of seekers. What else will you discuss with H.H. Doctor ? He is busy with His vast mission for the sake of society.’ Two days later H.H. Doctor telephoned Miss Prachi. At that time I felt, ‘I have a terrible cold. I can barely speak. Will not the Guru, my God be distressed by my speech ? Since He will not be able to comprehend what I speak, it is best not to unnecessarily waste His time.’

C. Harbouring the spiritual emotion that every moment belongs to the Guru and that I am able to live this moment only because of Him: There is only one thought in my mind, ‘Every moment belongs to my Guru. It is because of Him that I live hence I should utilise every moment constantly for His mission alone.’

5.6 Gratitude towards God and seekers

A. Feeling grateful to God for granting me the opportunity to serve Him: When rendering service unto the Absolute Truth (satseva), I would feel thankful for it as I was not assured of receiving a similar opportunity the following day. That is why when offered any service, I would grab the chance to do it. Each time out of gratitude to The Lord for giving me the opportunity to do service, I would cry.

B. I would tell The Lord that all my thoughts, knowledge and detachment (vairagya) were a result of His grace: Once when repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name, I felt, ‘Lord, You dwell in my conscience (antahkaran). You alone grant me worldly and spiritual experiences. All my thoughts, knowledge and detachment are because of Your grace. Please remind me to repeat (chant) Your Name all the time. May I perform every task according to Your will and Your command.’

C. Feeling grateful to The Lord for being able to serve seekers: I have offered everything unto the holy feet of my Guru. This loving countenance of The Lord makes me feel that I have found everything in the world. Every moment I pine for His love. Seekers are forms of The Lord and being able to serve them is my good fortune. Hence I constantly harbour a feeling of gratitude towards God and seekers.

5.7 Prayer

A. Praying that everything should occur as per The Lord’s wish even in childhood: When I was a student of class VIII, my younger sister fell down from the staircase. Everyone had given up hope of her survival. But I lit a lamp and prayed to The Lord, ‘May events occur as You wish. You are the bestower of life. We are mere puppets in Your hands who dance to Your tune. We will do as per Your bidding.’ By the grace of The Lord, my sister recovered from her illness.

B. Praying unto The Lord that may my mind pine for Him, just like a fish out of water: I prayed unto The Lord, ‘O Lord, I desire nothing in this world other than You. Being able to serve You is equivalent to all the happiness in the world. If You call me ‘Yours’, my life will be more than fulfilled. Just as a fish struggles out of water, may my mind yearn for You with Your remembrance. May it only get thoughts of spiritual practice. I offer all my worldly affairs and the rest of my life unto Your holy feet.’

C. Prayer unto The Lord to retain my spiritual emotion and devotion for Him even if He forgets me: The prayer that I unconsciously made unto The Lord was ‘O Lord, it does not matter if You forget me. I will not mind if You do not give me anything or always give me grief but please retain my spiritual emotion (bhav) and devotion for You.’

D. Constant prayer unto the holy feet of the Guru that He should get service done from me as per God’s expectations: All the time the subtle form of The Lord keeps vigil over me and does everything for me. It is only when tears would roll down my cheeks that I would realise the amount of spiritual emotion that I harboured for God in my mind (antahkaran). A continuous prayer which would occur unto the Guru’s holy feet would be ‘Please get service done from me as per God’s wish’ because eventually the Guru has to bear the brunt of all the careless mistakes we make.

E. When severely ill, a prayer unto The Lord to eliminate all the attachments and desires for my physical body: When I was severely ill, I was suffering a lot. Although I was quite motivated to render service from within, I could not do it. Then spontaneously a prayer unto the holy feet of The Lord began to occur, ‘O Lord, do not keep any attachment or desire for this physical body in me. May my death occur Blissfully while serving You.’

5.8 Blessings from a saint

A. Parulekar Maharaj’s telling me that Doctor Himself would do everything for me and that I would be able to realise God even while living in society: H.H. Parulekar Maharaj from Sindhudurg district told me, “H.H. Doctor Himself will do everything for you. He loves you as much as you love Him. He endures all your grief. You have a lot of knowledge. Later in life, you will receive knowledge from the God principle and utilise it for the sake of society. You will realise God even while living in society.”

5.9 Spiritual experiences

A. Not feeling distressed despite being tired when rendering service unto the Absolute Truth by harbouring the spiritual emotion that it is the Guru’s directive: Once I was very restless and tired and not in a mood to do any service. Sadhika told me that we had to prepare khir (a sweet delicacy prepared from milk). Though indisposed, perceiving it to be the directive of the Guru, I obeyed and did not experience any distress.

B. Events occurring as desired

  • Experiencing Bliss at the first meeting with Doctor and fulfillment of my desire to become a full time seeker: When harbouring the strong desire to become a full time seeker I happened to attend the thread ceremony of the son of Dr. Pandurang Marathe (one of the chief seekers of the Sanstha propagating Spirituality) where H.H. Doctor had come. The moment I saw Him, I felt very eager to offer obeisance to Him. Making a firm resolve, when I touched His feet in obeisance, I experienced immense Bliss. I was feeling like crying with the vision of the manifest form of God. H.H. Doctor asked me, ‘What do you do at home ?’ At that time, I wept and told Him, ‘I want to become a full time seeker but my mother does not allow me to render service’. It was at this juncture that He bestowed His grace upon me and I got the opportunity to render service at the Madgao centre of the Sanstha.
  • The Lord fulfilling my desire to live in the Guru’s home: When residing at Madgao, I used to attend satsangs (spiritual meetings) at the Phonda ashram (hermitage). Then, I used to think how fortunate the seekers working in the Phonda ashram were because they could learn directly from The Lord and could also get a holy vision (darshan) of Him everyday. Once I happened to go to the Phonda ashram to render service in preparation for the Panchamukhi Hanumatkavach sacrificial fire (yadnya) to be held there. I wished to spend the night in my Guru’s home there but due to lack of place, I was sent to another seeker’s house. I wept because this desire of mine was not fulfilled but then I realised that a seeker’s home was also my Guru’s. Because of my intense desire to live in the Guru’s home, very soon The Lord gave me the opportunity to render service in the Phonda ashram.

C. Events occurring according to the prayer

  • Realising the examination questions in advance due to a prayer unto The Lord: I used to study hard both in school and college but I could not remember it. I would tell God, ‘I am studying but You are the one who gets the answers written appropriately from me.’ I would realise the questions which would appear in the paper in advance and study accordingly.
  • Getting an opportunity to render service despite opposition from my mother, after praying to God: After my class XII examinations, my mother’s opposition to my spiritual practice grew. She refused to send me out to render service. Then I would pray to God. Then all of a sudden, she would change her mind and would allow me to go. After some time, she would oppose me once again.
  • The Lord helping me through the medium of seekers after praying

    1. The Lord applying holy ash (vibhuti) to my forehead through the medium of a seeker when I had a headache: Once when I had a terrible headache, I prayed unto The Lord. The Lord in the form of Miss Radhatai applied holy ash to my forehead and caressed my forehead. I was overwhelmed because the realisation that God in His subtle form takes care of even small details in our lives, dawned upon me.

    2. Feeling exhausted while rendering service alone and The Lord sending me another seeker for assistance: Once I was alone in the Madgao centre of the Sanstha to render service. There was no one for assistance. I thought to myself, ‘The Lord has given me this opportunity. Perhaps I would not get such an opportunity again.’ I prayed to God that though I wished to serve Him, it was beyond my physical capacity and asked for strength to render service. Just then The Lord, in the form of Sadhak reached there.

  • Being able to cook after a prayer: After I came to stay at the Madgao centre of the Sanstha, I was endowed with the task of helping Sadhika in the kitchen. In the beginning, I could not cook. However the prayer that The Lord Himself is teaching me and getting service done from me began occurring spontaneously and unknowingly I was able to render various kinds of service appropriately.
  • Prayer unto Doctor bringing absoluteness in my service: When I came to stay in the Phonda ashram, at first I got an opportunity to serve in the kitchen. This was the first time that I was serving in such a big centre. Initially, I was unsure if I would be able to do everything. Once looking at me H.H. Doctor said, “You will gradually learn everything” and I did. Within a fortnight, the responsibility of managing the entire kitchen came to me. Besides learning, this included teaching others. At that time, the prayer which I spontaneously recited unto H.H. Doctor was, ‘I am an ant, I am ignorant. You are the one who is actually doing everything. Please get this task done from me.’ I would soon get the spiritual experience that my prayer had reached H.H. Doctor because thereafter, I would be doing that task perfectly in a planned manner.
  • Becoming aware that repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name was occurring even in my sleep as per my prayer: I have a great motivation to serve The Lord and hence feel like doing so even at night. However, since other seekers are asleep, I too have to sleep. So I pray unto The Lord to get spiritual practice done from me during sleep too and I realise that my repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name is going on in sleep.

D. Premonition about father’s death: I would get a premonition about an impending illness or death in the village. When in class X, about five days before the death of my father, I knew that he would experience severe distress and die and this is exactly what happened.

E. Spiritual experience of the existence of God

  • Experiencing the existence of God and telling Him, ‘I am an orphan without You’: Once I realised that The Lord was lovingly stroking my head with His hands. He was taking away my tears and blessing me. So I said to Him, ‘O God, I am an orphan without You.’

F. Spiritual experiences during meditation

  • The Lord advising during meditation to sleep under Doctor’s bed when ill, receiving energy in the form of rays from Doctor and also seeing a vision during meditation that Doctor and deities are taking care of me during my illness: On the night of 9th May 2003, I had high fever. (H.H. Doctor was out of town since 26.4.2003.) When meditating, The Lord told me to sleep under H.H. Doctor’s bed. He said that would endow me with energy and would lower my temperature. I complied with these instructions. I perceived that at that time, H.H. Doctor was sleeping on the bed and transmitting energy to me in the form of rays. This was followed by a vision during meditation in which H.H. Doctor was putting me (in the form of a baby) to sleep in the form of my mother. He stroked by head affectionately. This was followed by assumption of my mother’s form by the seven deities. Every deity was eager to place me on Their laps and gave me medication. In fact, all of them earnestly took care of me.
  • Seeing two seekers along with me as babies and Lord Maruti combating distressing energies holding these babies against His abdomen, during meditation: On 6th May 2003, I along with Miss Prachi and Miss Aparna from the ‘Subtle section’ were immensely troubled by distressing energies. During meditation, I saw a vision in which all three of us were babies crying for energy, just as babies do with their mother. Lord Maruti had drawn all three of us onto His abdomen and was combating the distressing energies.

G. Perceiving Doctor’s bed to be His physical body and feeling the Blissful frequencies emanating from different objects in His room: On 26th April 2003, H.H. Doctor was out of town I was sitting in His room with my head resting on His bed. At that time, I perceived the bed as the physical body of H.H. Doctor. I felt as if the bed were my mother and I were a child on her lap. I perceived H.H. Doctor caressing my head gently like my mother. The other inanimate objects in His room seemed to express the Bliss (Anand) that they experienced when rendering service and are narrating about their service unto H.H. Doctor.

H. Spiritual experiences suggestive of spiritual progress

  • Spiritual experiences of the existence of God from time to time due to the spiritual emotion (bhav) that I am doing everything for God alone and feeling certain that I would progress spiritually: Due to the spiritual emotion that I am doing everything in life for God alone, I began to feel the presence of God from time to time. I began to realise that it was He alone who was getting the repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name and service done from me. I wished to blend with Him as soon as possible. Since I am in the Sanstha, I firmly believed that The Lord would make me a saint
  • On developing intense gratitude for God, His telling me, ‘Child, you are walking on thorns but I have placed My hands under your feet’: Once when reciting the Shivakavach (holy verse), I wept bitterly from within because I felt that The Lord had given me so much that even offering my life for Him would not repay His debt. Irrespective of the number of births we take, we will never be able to repay The Lord. We do not have anything to offer Him, yet He has drawn us so close to Him. At that juncture, from within my conscience (antahkaran) The Lord spoke, ‘Child, though you are walking on thorns, My hands are under your feet.’
  • The Lord telling me that He is within me: One day I did not see the manifest form of The Lord. I questioned The Lord why this had happened and He responded, ‘I am already within you.’
  • Realisation of the importance of my bodily organs when I prayed to God on my birthday and His telling me that my body now belonged to Him: On my birthday, my gratitude for God grew and I had a thought, ‘O Lord, may these eyes get a vision of You alone. May this mouth always repeat (chant) Your sweet Name. May these ears hear only Your Name and that what is taught at the satsangs (spiritual meetings). This body is meant to serve You. This mind is devoted unto Your holy feet.’ At that juncture, I prostrated before The Lord completely. Then The Lord said, ‘Child, now your body belongs to Me and I Myself am getting service done through it.’

I. Seeker getting as much energy and divine consciousness (chaitanya) as another seeker who was obtaining it by speaking to Doctor, through her subtle body which entered that of the latter: On 8th May 2003, when Miss Kavita was speaking to H.H. Doctor on the telephone, my subtle body entered her body. Thus I could hear everything that H.H. Doctor was telling Kavita and obtained the same amount of energy and divine consciousness as her.

5.10 Offering gratitude

The Lord has given me so much that I will never be able to repay my debt unto Him. He is both my mother and father. I have no one other than God.

 

Why should one undertake efforts to awaken collective spiritual emotion?

Contents


1. Attempts to awaken spiritual emotion in society

Spirituality teaches that each one of us has to repay four debts namely, unto God, sages, ancestors and the society. Teaching society to undertake spiritual practice is one way of repaying the debt unto society. If appropriate spiritual practice is undertaken according to the influence of time, one can derive maximum benefit from it. According to the influence of time in the Kaliyug (era), spiritual practice for the sake of society is 70% important while individual spiritual practice is 30% important. Thus for individual spiritual progress, it is important to draw maximum individuals in society towards Spirituality. This is true service unto the Absolute Truth (satseva). Along with individual efforts for awakening spiritual emotion, if efforts are made to enhance spiritual emotion of society, that is to augment the spiritual practice of society, then this itself is spiritual practice for the sake of society. One can make efforts to achieve this on the following three planes. Some examples given below will help one to understand this point.

A. Family

  • One’s conduct in the family should be ideal. In fact, the family members should perceive that one is a seeker through one’s behaviour.
  • All family members should be looked upon as forms of the Guru, e.g. if someone falls ill he should be nursed as if one were rendering service unto the Guru.
  • Efforts should be made to make every family member a seeker.
  • Every event should be viewed from the spiritual angle, e.g. if a birthday is to be celebrated in the family, instead of cutting a cake, etc. according to the Western style, it should be celebrated in the spiritual tradition with the ritual of offering lit lamps (aukshan) to the one whose birthday it is.

B. Neighbours, relatives, etc.

  • One should try to impress the concept of spiritual practice upon neighbours, relatives, etc. both, intellectually and through display of good conduct.
  • Efforts should be made to make them undertake spiritual practice inspired by the sattvik (sattva predominant) and happy atmosphere in one’s home.
  • One should participate in auspicious events in their homes and help them to celebrate the events according to Spirituality.

C. At the workplace, business, etc.

  • One should display good conduct and be understanding towards one’s colleagues.
  • Colleagues should be convinced about the importance of repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name and spiritual practice. If feasible, one should propagate Spirituality there as well, e.g. after office hours or during lunchbreak one may conduct satsangs (spiritual meetings) for those interested in Spirituality. They should also be explained the importance of offering money for The Lord’s mission.
  • If possible, strips with the Names of deities, sattvik pictures of deities, etc. should be pasted at the workplace. This helps to make the atmosphere sattvik.

2. Sojourn of Seeker(compiler) in awakening spiritual emotion (bhav)

Though faced with difficulties in spiritual practice, Seeker always harboured an intense motivation to acquire the grace of the Guru and also had a constant yearning to increase her spiritual emotion towards Him. Since well channelised efforts were coupled with faith, it helped greatly in enhancing her spiritual emotion towards the Guru. Given below are the efforts put in by her to awaken spiritual emotion both, in herself as well as in others.

2.1 Journey from the ‘Weekly Prabhat’(news paper) to the ‘Subtle section’

A. Before I undertook spiritual practice I was very emotional in nature. As my spiritual practice grew, my emotional nature gradually decreased. Forgetting all other worldly relationships, I was attracted towards the holy feet of the Guru.

B. The emotional nature helped me to blend with the Guru (His individual form) but made it difficult for me to blend with His collective form, that is to get along with other seekers. This was the biggest stumbling block in my spiritual practice.

C. Though I constantly became aware of this obstacle, I found it difficult to overcome it. Instead of making conscious efforts to overcome this, I would surrender unto the Guru and weep saying, ‘I wish to change this and win Your grace but I cannot find the way’.

D. Once when working for the ‘Weekly Prabhat’ (news paper) at the Phonda ashram (hermitage) of the Sanstha , I spoke to H.H. Doctor about this obstacle in my spiritual practice. So He explained, “The channel of faith in Dr. Savita is – Dr. Mahesh to Dr. PP but in case of Mrs. Mangal, it is from Mrs. Mangal to Dr. Panduraj to Dr. PP. As a result there are expectations, failure of expectations, reactions, upsurge of other personality defects, etc. These pose as obstacles not only in your individual spiritual practice but also hinder your spiritual practice for the sake of society. Personality defects are the biggest stumbling blocks in spiritual practice done for the sake of society because when reactions erupt as a result and are voiced, they obstruct the spiritual practice of others. Discuss this with Dr. Durga Sawant (one of the chief seekers in the spread of Spirituality of the Sanstha) and find a means to eliminate it.”

E. After deep contemplation, I realised that I had to drop the middle step of Dr. Panduraj and develop faith directly in the Guru and began making efforts to establish this. Like the trapeze artist from the circus, I had already let go of one hand from the swinging bar (I had devoted all my time to Spirituality) and was working for the Guru’s mission but was not undertaking spiritual practice in such a way that the Guru would hold my other hand. This made me feel as if I were suspended in midair. Though my worldly attachments had vanished and attachment for the Guru’s mission had grown, as I had not merged with the Guru’s collective form, I was not bestowed with His grace.

F. With the conviction that Dr. Durga Sawant was ‘the Guru who would give direction to my spiritual progress’, I sought his guidance regarding spiritual practice and made a firm resolve to listen to whatever counsel he gave. Dr. Durga Sawant first taught me how to analyse personality defects which were obstacles in my spiritual practice for the sake of society. At that time I was rendering service in the editorial section of the ‘Weekly Prabhat’ (news paper). I changed my behaviour as guided by Dr. Sawant. Harbouring the feeling of gratitude time and again, I kept only one goal of ‘self-improvement’ in front of me.

G. I found it cumbersome to overcome personality defects. As a remedy, I began to listen to the Marathi songs from the play on the life of Saint Gururaj and analysed the incidents in it to create an impression on my mind. This enhanced my motivation to work for the Guru’s mission day-by-day.

H. The efforts I put in to eliminate personality defects began to bear fruit gradually. I began to feel love for other seekers and was able to behave with them according to their spiritual level. I could also develop a rapport with them. This endowed me with Bliss (Anand). At the same time my repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name grew and along with it, the motivation to expand the mission of the Guru.

I. Once I felt that I should have a photograph of the Guru’s holy feet. So I asked a seeker doing photography to take one such photograph. She replied that we should do it only with H.H. Doctor’s permission and certainly not without His knowledge. When she asked Him, He said, “No one is deserving of keeping this photograph in his temple at home yet. So let us wait for the appropriate moment.” This enhanced my motivation to be deserving of a place at His feet, even further.

J. In August 2001, as black magic was done on the Sanstha, it was troubled by distressing energies. H.H. Doctor suffered the most. I would get apprehensive on seeing Him. Though I knew I could do nothing to help Him, yet the thought that I should help Him cropped into my mind time and again. When I asked H.H. Doctor if I could do something He replied, “Only other saints can alleviate this trouble.” Then He narrated the story of how Karna had wasted his weapon which he had preserved to kill Arjun, to eliminate Ghatotkach and added, “We should not commit a similar mistake. If we utilise the energy obtained from spiritual practice undertaken over the years to overcome my distress then no energy will be left to carry out the further mission of propagation of Spirituality.”

K. Later other seekers in the Sanstha too were affected by distressing energies. Once again during conversation with H.H. Doctor He said, “At first, distressing energies troubled only Me but now they have found My weakness (the feeling that every seeker in the Sanstha should evolve spiritually) and hence have started harassing them but I will not keep quiet anymore.” This sentence which He uttered gave a new turn to my life. For nearly a month and a half, due to this trouble, H.H. Doctor’s vital energy (pranshakti) had dropped to 30%. With such a low level, one can die at any moment. Despite this, He did not make any attempts to change His condition. All the same, when seekers were affected, considering them as ‘My seekers’, He began to give them spiritual therapy. That night I was sleepless wondering what I could do for ‘His seekers’ so as to please Him and contemplated deeply on it. After that, my mind would constantly think of doing something for others.

L. I developed an intense motivation to do something and sometime thereafter I got the opportunity to serve in the ‘Subtle section’. (The ‘Subtle section’ consists of seekers who administer spiritual therapy to help seekers troubled by distressing energies.)

2.2 Increase in motivation to expand the Guru’s mission when rendering service in the ‘Subtle section’

A. To alleviate the problem of distressing energies, eleven ‘Panchamukhi Hanumatkavach’ sacrificial fires (yadnyas) were performed in the Phonda ashram (hermitage). Around that time, I too was severely afflicted with distressing energy. Despite the physical distress, the perseverence to augment the Guru’s mission and to serve Him grew more and more. In fact, I was happy to be troubled because it indicated that I was rendering service unto the Absolute Truth (satseva).

B. When I planned remedies to help seekers afflicted with distressing energies, the latter began to attack me on a larger scale. Despite this, I was determined to undertake this service even at the cost of my life.

2.3 Development of the attitude to learn in order to carry out the Guru’s mission

In July 2002, my mother had an attack of hemiplegia. I had to stay with her in the hospital for 8 days. Thinking that God had given me yet another opportunity to learn something new which would help me in the Guru’s mission in the long run, instead of remaining dependent on the nurse, I learnt how to do Ryle’s tube feeding, sponging, etc. The days I spent in the hospital were Blissful because I felt that I was doing something for the Guru’s mission.

2.4 Inspiration from the Guru to augment His mission as a result of my intense motivation

A. During meditation, I realised that H.H. Doctor was guiding me on how to expand His mission and obtain His grace continuously.

B. Often He would suggest solutions to problems from within. Other seekers also experienced this.

2.5 Enhancement in faith in the Guru

A. Sometimes after giving therapy to seekers afflicted with distressing energies at Dhamse, Goa, I would lose my vital energy (pranshakti). On some such occasions when feeling drained out, if the distressing energy within a seeker manifested itself then I would not hesitate to help him. Then I would feel a great deal of energy coming to me from the Guru. This is how my faith in the Guru kept growing.

B. In 2002, distressing energies made imprints in H.H. Doctor’s room and bathroom in the Phonda ashram (hermitage). This was an indicator of the growing influence of distressing energies and the combat against them. When these imprints appeared in the Dhamse ashram as well, instead of feeling frightened we were convinced that our service unto the Guru was in the right direction. In fact, the determination to face anything fearlessly became stronger and faith in the Guru grew.

2.6 Expression of gratitude unto the Guru at every step

A. Realising that the service I was rendering in the subtle section was actually beyond my capacity and that the Guru was getting it done through me, I would constantly express gratitude unto the Guru.

B. Observing the motivation to augment the Guru’s mission in seekers who had come to the Dhamse ashram to get rid of their distressing energies, I developed immense love for them. From within, I would feel grateful to the Guru for choosing me as a medium and giving me an opportunity to render service unto them.

2.7 Remembering the Guru through different acts in day-to-day life

A. My day begins with mental worship of the Guru’s holy feet. Whenever hymns (arti) are sung in the ashram, I imagine that I am doing the ritualistic worship of the Guru’s holy feet and singing a hymn in His praise. Often this helps in awakening spiritual emotion.

B. At breakfast when eating foodstuffs which I like, I realise that four times a week H.H. Doctor eats krispies soaked in milk. Formerly I disliked krispies but now recollecting this I am able to enjoy them.

C. Throughout the day I recollect the different gestures and movements of H.H. Doctor.

2.8 Considering even casual conversation of the Guru as His command

A. In 1995, before H.H. Maharaj renounced His body, I along with a few other seekers had been to Panhala in Kolhapur to pay obeisance to Him. Those days I had been losing a lot of hair. Hence to arrest further hair loss, Dr. Panduraj has advised me to cut it and make it shoulder length which I complied with. Another seeker had cut her hair even shorter. During conversation, H.H. Doctor casually said, “Women say they cut their hair for convenience but actually it is done for fashion.” Thereafter I never cut my hair again.

B. My daughter Aparna was fond of music and art since the age of 5 years. I wished to enrol her in a class imparting training in these subjects. Once when speaking on a different topic, H.H. Doctor casually commented, “Children in some families are born as seekers and are talented in drawing, music, etc. When parents train them in those fields, they excel and attain fame only in that and do not evolve spiritually. Such children should be drawn towards spiritual practice.” Learning from this statement, instead of sending my children to a class to improve artistic talents, I directed them towards Spirituality and concentrated on enhancing their spiritual practice. As a result, they excelled in different artistic spheres without attending special classes for the same.

2.9 Preservation of items connected with Doctor and gifts received from Him

  • I have got all letters written by H.H. Doctor to me laminated and have filed them.
  • When H.H. Doctor sends parcels with my name written on it with His handwriting, I cut it out and preserve it. I have stuck one such cut-out onto my writing pad. Some seekers who do not know whose handwriting it is experience white light emanating from it. (White light is a symbol of purity.)
  • I have preserved the pencils used by H.H. Doctor. Seekers experience energy from them.
  • I have preserved the seat and handkerchief used by H.H. Doctor during the sacrificial fire (yadnya) in the Dhamse ashram (hermitage). These objects constantly remind me of the presence of the Guru.
  • I ritualistically worship the slippers used by H.H. Doctor. Often, whenever distressing energies trouble me, I have experienced that I acquire energy emanating from that holy footwear (paduka). [On the day the sacrificial fire was held in the Dhamse ashram, when all other seekers were asleep at 3 a.m. I placed this holy footwear at the site of the sacrificial fire and along with my ten year old son, Kedar ritualistically worshipped them. Then wrapping the slippers in a beautiful cloth, I placed them under the table where the photograph of H.H. Maharaj has been placed.]
  • To derive sattvik (sattva predominant) frequencies, I keep a white towel used by H.H. Doctor with me. Whenever I experience any kind of distress, I place it over my pillow before going to bed.

2.10 Learning through H.H. Doctor’s praise

A. H.H. Doctor would praise me as service in the subtle section had begun to occur smoothly. Though I would feel happy temporarily, I would soon remind myself that this was a ‘a dangerous department’. I would analyse the points praised by the Guru and contemplate on how to teach them to others. This helped to view the praise neutrally.

B. I am constantly aware of the vast energy of the Guru which is instrumental in my rendering this service which is beyond my potential. In reality however, H.H. Doctor tells others, “Mangal did this” ! This impressed upon me the need to inculcate the divine quality of ‘doing everything and yet remaining aloof’. I also learnt to praise others and began to encourage them.

2.11 Making the children independent by teaching them to develop faith in the Guru

When solving various problems of my children instead of using psychology, I tried to resolve them on the spiritual plane. By impressing upon them how H.H. Doctor constantly takes care of all of us in different ways, I made attempts to enhance their faith in the Guru. As a result, no matter what the situation is, the children no longer fear anything, instead they themselves find a way out. Whenever my son Kedar is troubled by distressing energies, he himself prays to H.H. Doctor and finds out the Name of which deity to repeat (chant) so as to alleviate the distress.

2.12 Some unique spiritual experiences regarding H.H. Doctor

A. ‘Let service as per the expectations of H.H. Doctor occur through me and when performing it may there be dissolution of my mind, intellect and ego, is the prayer that I began to make constantly. Consequently, I obtained numerous spiritual experiences in which I acted first and then received a telephonic message from H.H. Doctor to do exactly what I had already done.

B. I have kept a seat for H.H. Doctor in my room and I always perceive that He is seated there.

C. Once when H.H. Doctor was out of station, I placed my japamala (Hindu rosary) on His chair in His room in the ashram for a whole day. Thereafter whenever I held the mala, I would slip into meditation.

D. Sometimes after doing spiritual therapy, one’s vital energy (pranshakti) reduces. When this happens merely speaking to H.H. Doctor on the telephone for a minute or two restores this energy.

E. If exhaustion sets in when administering spiritual therapy to others and I touch H.H. Doctor’s holy footwear placed at the site of the sacrificial fire (yadnya) for sometime and repeat (chant) The Lord’s Name, then I perceive sattvik (sattva predominant) energy entering my body through the fingers.

F. H.H. Doctor had presented a toilet soap to my children. When troubled by distressing energies if they used that soap, they would experience divine consciousness (chaitanya).

G. If I eat the foodstuffs sent by H.H. Doctor as holy sacrament (prasad) after giving spiritual therapy to others then my exhaustion gets alleviated.

H. Once I dreamt that H.H. Doctor gave me the mala worn around His neck. However I saw myself distributing every bead from that mala to seekers severely afflicted with distressing energies.

2.13 Efforts to awaken collective spiritual emotion

H.H. Doctor had entrusted me with the service of treating seekers afflicted with distressing energies. So, besides the goal of getting rid of their distressing energies, I had also kept the objective before me of developing spiritual emotion (bhav) for the Guru in them, rapidly. Some efforts made by me in that direction are given below.

A. Various methods to develop mental strength amongst seekers to combat distressing energies

  • I encourage seekers severely afflicted with distressing energies to enhance their spiritual practice by telling them, “It is because the Guru is paying constant attention to you that He has sent you to the Dhamse ashram (hermitage). If you put in efforts then He is bound to bestow His grace on you.”
  • During satsangs (spiritual meetings), I explain what H.H. Doctor wishes to teach seekers through the distress experienced by them. This enhances their determination to augment spiritual practice by enduring the distress.
  • So that seekers perceive the support of the Guru, I placed His holy footwear in the temple next to the site of the sacrificial fire. I also kept the holy water (tirtha) from the daily ritualistic worship for the seekers and many benefitted from it a great deal.
  • I tell distressed seekers how enriched with energy the holy sacrament of foodstuff sent by H.H. Doctor is and offer it to them. This helps them in developing a combative attitude towards the harassment by distressing energies.
  • When a seeker is tormented by distressing energies to an extent beyond his tolerance, I ask him to sit on H.H. Doctor’s chair or the mat on which He places His feet (when He visits the ashram in the subtle form) and repeat (chant) The Lord’s Name. The seeker then experiences a surge of energy from H.H. Doctor.
  • One day, Miss Sakshi(aged 3 months) suddenly developed a lot of distress. She would not stop wailing despite all efforts. Finally I surrendered her unto H.H. Doctor’s holy feet (in the subtle form) and pleaded with Him to take care of her. The next moment Sakshi slept on my lap peacefully.

B. Increasing seekers’ faith in Doctor by explaining the importance of Doctor and His guidance to them

  • I narrate incidents of the time spent in the holy company (satsang) of H.H. Doctor in the past decade, His teachings and the spiritual experiences He has endowed me with from time to time.
  • I also narrate a spiritual experience of an inmate of the ashram to all seekers immediately and try to impress upon them that these spiritual experiences are a bestowal of H.H. Doctor’s grace and are a source of encouragement to make further spiritual progress.
  • H.H. Doctor conducts regular satsangs for seekers at the Phonda ashram. I record these and play them for those seekers in the Dhamse ashram who are unable to attend these meetings.
  • If a seeker is mentally disturbed then I tell him to listen to H.H. Doctor’s guidance from an audio cassette. Consequently his distress decreases a great deal and his repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name which earlier was not occurring properly begins to occur smoothly.
  • I continuously remind seekers how H.H. Doctor helps us in varied ways and through different media.

C. Augmentation of seekers’ attitude to learn and encouraging them

  • Seekers from different centres of the Sanstha visit the Dhamse ashram (hermitage). I tell seekers staying in the ashram to narrate their spiritual experiences and the new things that they have learnt with respect to spiritual practice, to these new seekers.
  • Mrs. Gadkari could not ring the bell as required during the ritual of moving lit lamps amidst singing of hymns (arti). So instead of ignoring the issue, after the ritual I myself taught her how to do it. This increased her self-confidence tremendously.
  • H.H. Doctor had gifted me an idol of deity Durga. I told every seeker to view it in the subtle dimension. Once when footprints appeared in front of the place where the holy footwear of H.H. Doctor were placed, I told the seekers to take a subtle reading. The objective behind this was to train them to study the subtle dimension because eventually Spirituality is a subtle science and correct answers in subtle experiments augment the faith of seekers in Spirituality.
  • I hand over my japamala to other seekers so that they perceive the sattvik (sattva predominant) frequencies in it. I advise them to increase their repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name which in turn will help in making the frequencies of their malas sattvik.
  • Since H.H. Doctor made the seekers serving in the subtle section aware that He was operating through their medium, they rendered their service seriously and thereafter they made efforts to correct the defects in their personality.
  • When giving seekers homemade medicines for cold, cough, indigestion, acidity, etc., I resorted to simple methods such as praying to the Guru, sprinkling holy ash (vibhuti) onto the medicines before giving them to the seeker, holding the medicine in the hand and repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name before giving it to the seeker, etc. Thereafter the need for medicines of seekers reduced markedly. As a result, seekers were convinced about the importance of prayers and spiritual remedies.

D. Use of varied techniques to awaken spiritual emotion

  • Once during group meditation in the ashram, I perceived the subtle presence of H.H. Doctor and hence started keeping a chair for Him. Thereafter several seekers perceived that H.H. Doctor had visited the ashram and was sitting on the chair.
  • Sattvik idols of Lord Ganapati are being sculpted by the ‘sculpture section’ of Sanstha. I got only the feet of the deity made for myself and kept them in the ashram. I began to render service after offering obeisance to them. Thereafter other seekers emulated me. Several seekers would perceive them as the holy feet of H.H. Maharaj and H.H. Doctor and their spiritual emotion would get awakened.
  • At meal times when all seekers come together, if H.H. Doctor’s favourite foodstuff is discussed then when eating that item seekers are reminded of H.H. Doctor.

E. Efforts to make seekers ‘ideal’

  • I prepare a timetable for seekers everyday and monitor their repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name, prayer, service, etc.
  • I conduct satsangs (spiritual meetings) for seekers everyday so they share with one another what they learnt from the viewpoint of spiritual practice, what were the shortcomings, etc.
  • I organise special satsangs for seekers rendering special service related to periodicals, drawing, sculpture, etc.
  • I offer individual guidance to seekers to make them ‘ideal’.

F. Teaching parents about their children

  • I narrate the spiritual experiences of my children to seekers who are parents so that they too teach their children to undertake spiritual practice and make them independent.
  • I try to convince parents that the spiritual experiences of my children and theirs are because of the grace of H.H. Doctor and are bestowed as a means of expressing His praise.

F. Getting a spiritual experience that the Guru Himself is making me guide seekers: A prayer that ‘May I be able to appropriately guide seekers who have come to the ashram (hermitage) so as to alleviate their problems and so that their spiritual practice occurs maximally’ would be recited by me constantly. That is why I do not plan the topic that I will discuss with seekers. If I plan it then at the last moment, new concepts enter my mind. Once before talking to a seeker, Sadhika I prayed, ‘Lord make me speak whatever is necessary to eliminate the obstacles in her spiritual practice’. Thereafter what I spoke was completely different from what I had planned to speak. However this created a positive effect on her.

 

Performing every activity as a service unto the Guru

Contents


1. Service

To awaken more and more spiritual emotion for The Lord or the Guru through the medium of service, one has to make efforts on the following three planes – 1. Action, 2. Thought and 3. Attitude.

1.1 Action

A. Every action can be done in the following four manners:

  • Service: Rendering service merely with the gross body.
  • Complete service: Carrying out actions with the help of the physical body, mind as well as intellect.
  • Absolute service: Carrying out actions by surrendering the mind, intellect and ego at the Guru’s feet, that is, not taking doership for one’s actions.
  • Service of the Guru: Expressing gratitude after completion of service which is rendered by offering the mind, intellect and ego at the Guru’s feet and as per His expectations.

     How a service can be done in the above four manners will be understood from the example of making chapatis in the ashram’s (hermitage) kitchen.

  • Service: Making chapatis
  • Complete service: Making chapatis while repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name by using the mind and intellect.
  • Absolute service: Harbouring the spiritual emotion (bhav) that I am not making the chapatis but The Lord / Guru is getting it done from me, when preparing chapatis.
  • Service unto the Guru: Praying unto the Guru ‘You get the chapatis done through me’ at the very commencement of service. Making the chapatis in a manner expected by the Guru along with repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name. Expressing gratitude on completion of service.

     For every service to be carried out with spiritual emotion, it has to be done as service unto the Guru as explained above.

B. One should not act as if one is doing some work as it does not amount to rendering service unto the Guru nor does one experience Bliss (Anand) from it. Rather, one should harbour the spiritual emotion that one is rendering service unto the Guru, e.g. if one is allotted the service of chopping onions and potatoes then one should harbour the spiritual emotion that one is doing so in order to make the holy sacrament for God and cook for the Guru and seekers.

C. Generally, the more the thought about God is unclear and ill-defined, the lesser is the act likely to awaken spiritual emotion. As against this, the more clear and well-defined is the thought, the act is more likely to awaken spiritual emotion, e.g. carrying out an act as service unto God. Further if one carries out an act with the spiritual emotion that the Guru is actually standing in front of oneself and observing everything, it is even more beneficial. A disciple rendering service in this fashion is called an internal disciple.

D. One should associate the act one is performing with a previous act rendered with spiritual emotion, e.g. if one has to render service of cleaning a room then it should be carried out harbouring the spiritual emotion that it is the temple at home itself.

E. Harbour the attitude that ‘I am a servitor’ : The following examples will illustrate how Dr. (compiler) served his Guru, H.H. Maharaj in various ways.

  • After arriving at the ashram (hermitage), he would offer obeisance to H.H. Maharaj and then proceed to clean up the ashram.
  • When seated near H.H. Maharaj, Doctor would press His feet. This he would do lovingly and gently.
  • Doctor would constantly pay attention to every word that H.H. Maharaj said. If H.H. Maharaj asked anyone to fetch something then Doctor would himself get up and go to bring it.
  • When H.H. Maharaj would go to the toilet, Doctor would open the door for Him and before He returned, he would dust His seat and rearrange the pillow. He would wait to wipe H.H. Maharaj’s feet with a napkin after He returned from the bathroom and would sit only after Maharaj had assumed His seat.
  • Whenever there was power failure in the hermitage (math), Doctor would fan H.H. Maharaj with a hand fan all the day through.
  • In the evening when H.H. Maharaj would get up to leave the hermitage, Doctor would go ahead of Him and place His slippers before Him.
  • In the night no matter how late it was, till H.H. Maharaj gave Doctor permission to leave he would neither budge from there nor ask whether he could leave. Only after H.H. Maharaj asked him to do so would he leave.
  • Doctor would familiarise himself with every item in the hermitage, e.g. the dustbin, broom, electrical switches and other items of daily use.
  • Doctor would behave as if he were a part of the hermitage.

F. Harbour the spiritual emotion that every object used in service is a means to render service, e.g. the knife used to chop vegetables is a tool to render service.

G. Make complete use of the intellect when performing an action: One should use the intellect to the fullest to comprehend the importance of every act from the viewpoint of service, to understand the various aspects of service unto the Absolute Truth (satseva) and to perform a task with minimal errors within the shortest possible time span. ‘योग: कर्मसु कौशलम्‌ ।’, meaning undertaking any task with perfection (absoluteness) is yoga and yoga is blending of the embodied soul (jiva) with The Supreme God (Paramatma).

H. When rendering service, one should make efforts to imbibe divine qualities: If one wishes to merge into God then one can do so by blending with His varied divine qualities, that is by imbibing them. To cite an example, one quality of God is thriftiness. Dr. (one of the compilers) utilises papers used on one side and even soiled ones instead of brand new ones for writing His holy texts and preserves the brand new ones for other important tasks such as computer printouts. Thus He also prevents wastage of soiled papers. If one uses everything obtained by The Lord’s grace thriftily then He assists the mission even more.

I. Generally in the initial stages, one should render service which is feasible and can be done properly. Then one derives the satisfaction that one has rendered service well and gets the inspiration to do service of the next stage.

J. Often one is unaware of one’s latent potential. Hence, one should render service a little beyond one’s capacity. Only then does one experience the energy that The Lord endows to render that service to perfection.

K. Service rendered unto the Absolute Truth should be devoid of expectations.

L. One should constantly harbour the spiritual emotion (bhav) that ‘I am a messenger of the Guru’ while preaching Spirituality and that I am delivering the message / teaching of the Guru to the audience.

1.2 Thinking

This is the inspiration behind an act, e.g. if thoughts are sattvik (sattva predominant) then the actions resulting from them are sattvik too. Efforts to be made to alter thinking so that one is able to render service with spiritual emotion are given below.

A. From the viewpoint of awakening of spiritual emotion, service unto the Absolute Truth is 10% important while service unto the Guru is 50% important. It is not possible for each one to serve the manifest form of the Guru. So, if the unmanifest form of the Guru, that is His principle is served considering it to be service unto the Guru then it assists in awakening spiritual emotion (bhav) faster. To develop this when rendering any kind of service or helping seekers, one should think that ‘one is serving the Guru’. Some spiritual experiences listed below will highlight the importance of this.

  • An appropriate thought from within eliminated my doubts about service and stopped the pain in my hand: In December 2001, on one morning at 11 a.m. a seeker, was lying down as she was feeling unwell. As I rolled out chapatis with the rolling pin in the kitchen, my left arm began aching. The thought that crossed my mind then was, ‘seeker is asleep. Why are you making chapatis alone?’ The next moment I realised that this thought was not mine, it was inserted in my mind by distressing energies. So I told my mind, ‘O mind, no matter how hard you try to create doubts in my mind I am aware that a part of my Guru exists in every seeker, so I will serve them.’ No sooner did I get this thought than my arm stopped aching. – Sadhika
  • Experiencing Bliss instead of distress when washing the clothes of a seeker afflicted with distressing energy because of spiritual emotion that the Guru’s clothes were being washed: Once when washing the clothes of a seeker in whom a distressing energy had manifested itself, I prayed unto the Guru, ‘Get this task done from me as if I am washing Your clothes instead of those of the troubled seeker.’ Consequently, when washing those clothes I did not experience any distress. On the contrary, I experienced so much Bliss which I had not experienced even when washing my own clothes. In fact, after the task I felt fresher than before. It seemed as if I had not done anything at all. – Sadhika
  • Getting the holy vision (darshan) of Doctor while rendering service unto non-seekers, assuming it to be service unto the Guru: Hira asked me to serve two plates of food to labourers working in our property. When preparing the plates of food, the spiritual emotion that I harboured was that I was preparing the plates for the Guru. At that time, I could actually see H.H. Doctor in the plate and tears flowed from my eyes. – Sadhika

B. When rendering service of any kind, one should constantly remember the Guru or God. The spiritual experiences cited below will prove the strength which lies in this.

  • Constantly thinking that H.H. Doctor was by my side was sufficient to rid me of my fear.
  • The simple thought that ‘the Guru will visit the ashram (hermitage) today’ is sufficient to spread divine consciousness (chaitanya) in the entire ashram. – Sadhika, Subtle section
  • Feeling afraid that a distressing energy is going to advance towards me and God giving me the foresight to offer obeisance to it while holding the japamala (Hindu rosary) in my hand thus giving me courage: On the night of 18th December 2002, before going to bed I closed my eyes to recite a prayer. At that time, I realised that there was a lady in the living room who was advancing towards me. This frightened me and I opened my eyes. The box with my japamala was in front of me. At that moment I felt that I should offer obeisance to her along with my japamala. As I did so, my fear vanished. It is God who inspired me to hold the mala in the hand. Whenever I recollect this incident, it gives me courage. – Sadhika

     This demonstrates how remembering the Guru or God when rendering any kind of service proves beneficial. A seeker with this kind of spiritual emotion is blessed by The Lord with a corresponding spiritual experience.

     Seekers severely afflicted with distressing energies being blessed with a vision of Doctor, H.H. Maharaj and other deities when they rendered service harbouring the spiritual emotion that Doctor was with them: Several seekers in the Miraj ashram severely afflicted with distressing energies were allotted the task of cleaning the ashram. Since H.H. Doctor visits the ashram in the subtle form everyday, they harboured the feeling that H.H. Doctor was with them when rendering service. This enhanced their spiritual emotion and they were able to pray time and again. Consequently everyday they began to see H.H. Maharaj, H.H. Doctor and all the seven deities in Their subtle form bestowing blessings on them. Thus the belief that they would triumph over the distressing energies developed in them and they began repeating (chanting) The Lord’s Name with perseverence and within two days the distressing energies in them left. – Sadhika

     When rendering any form of service specially when propagating Spirituality, often merely thinking of the Guru eliminates the distress caused by distressing energies. That is precisely why before performing any task, one should contemplate on a deity or the Guru and then proceed.

C. When rendering service if one harbours the spiritual emotion that one is serving the manifest form of the Guru or God, God rewards one with a corresponding spiritual experience.

     Seekers severely afflicted with distressing energies getting varied spiritual experiences upon harbouring the spiritual emotion that the pictures of deities were actually Their holy feet: Once in the Miraj ashram (hermitage) we were supposed to shift the meditation room. When shifting the pictures of deities, the seekers severely afflicted with distressing energies were told to imagine that they were carrying the holy feet of the deities instead of Their pictures and on complying they had spiritual experiences accordingly. Some experienced subtle fragrance, some felt the presence of H.H. Doctor with them while others felt the presence of deities in the meditation room. – Sadhika

D. When rendering service one should not think that ‘I am rendering service’ but should constantly harbour the spiritual emotion that the Guru / God is getting service done from oneself.

E. Constant introspection on whether one has served so as to appease the Guru improves the quality of service.

F. If one contemplates on the Guru’s mission continuously then one’s actions occur as per His expectations.

G. The more sattvik (sattva predominant) one’s thoughts are, more is the divine consciousness (chaitanya) in oneself and more sattvik are the actions resulting from them. That is why one should constantly make efforts to harbour thoughts about the Absolute Truth (Sat). One also gets the benefit of internal satsang (holy company) if one recollects the spiritual concepts told by the Guru / other spiritual guides.

H. When rendering service, one should not allow wrong reactions or doubts about others to enter one’s mind because if one’s reactions hurt other seekers then the grace of the Guru is not bestowed upon oneself. That is why it is always advisable to practise devotion as a servitor (dasyabhakti).

1.3 Attitude

Trying constantly through action and thinking to render service with spiritual emotion (bhav) gradually makes service possible with spiritual emotion and it gets incorporated into one’s attitude. To inculcate this attitude in the self as soon as possible besides service unto the Guru and His mission, one should view everything that one does in day-to-day life as service and make an attempt to do it with spiritual emotion.

[The holy text ‘Biography (Charitra) of Maharaj’ in Marathi published by the Spiritual Sanstha gives examples of how H.H. Maharaj served His Guru with motivation and spiritual emotion. Details on service unto the Guru are given in ‘Science of Spirituality : Vol. 3 – The Disciple’.]

2. Holy company (satsang)

Satsang means ‘company of the Truth’. ‘Sat’ refers to sattva predominance. Awakening of spiritual emotion occurs rapidly in a sattvik environment. It is faster in the company of saints than in that of seekers.

3. Sacrifice

Offering something to God or the Guru is sacrifice. A true disciple is one who sacrifices his body, mind, wealth and even his life for the sake of the Guru. Awakening of spiritual emotion occurs faster in such a seeker.

4. Spiritual love (love without expectation)

Love being an emotion, is not a part of spiritual emotion. Spiritual love without expectation (priti) however is a component of spiritual emotion. The basic difference between love and spiritual love is the presence and absence of expectation respectively. Generally in worldly life, one expects something or the other from the person one loves. Spiritual love on the other hand is loving every creation of The Lord, without any expectation. Spiritual practice helps in the generation of spiritual love. To augment spiritual love one should practise the following.

A. Constant concern for others: The more one thinks about others, the less is the attachment for the self and the more expansive the mind becomes. Expansiveness of the mind is feeling spiritual love for others. Some examples in this context are given below.

  • Sadhika(compiler) had to constantly give spiritual treatment to seekers afflicted with distressing energies. She would contemplate on how to devote twenty-four hours of the day to this service and in this process could not even fall asleep.
  • I was smearing the courtyard with cowdung. When Krushnadada saw me doing this, though he too was working in the hot sun he gave his cap to me. – Sadhak
  • Every morning in the ashram (hermitage) I pray thus, ‘May all of us seekers working in the kitchen make spiritual progress’. Since I constantly feel for others, even if the holy sacrament (food) gets over before I eat, I do not feel upset. On the contrary, I feel happy seeing other seekers enjoy it. If at times it does not suffice for the seekers then I feel that I lack in rendering service unto the Guru appropriately and that I am not worthy of rendering service and I surrender unto the Guru. In my prayer I say, ‘I have made a major mistake. Please forgive me. Please prevent me from making this mistake again.’ – Sadhika

B. Sacrificing oneself for others: One should perpetually try to find an opportunity to serve the seekers with whom one lives.

C. Preventing generation of reactions about other seekers in the mind: Maximum obstacles in spiritual practice arise from generation of reactions about others. At times, their expression hurts the sentiments of other seekers. Reactions are bound to occur in the human mind but with spiritual progress, the number of reactions generated in the mind decreases. Even if they do arise, instead of falling prey to them one can control them. If anything is occurring against one’s wishes one should analyse the event or action as given below, to reduce the intensity of the reaction. If a reaction is not allowed to generate at all then love for seekers develops faster.

Subject: Task of setting up a bookstall of the publications of Spiritual Sanstha
Incident: A chief seeker feeling that seeker ‘A’ did not come to render this service despite being called.
Reaction in the mind of the chief seeker: Seeker ‘A’ is irresponsible, is not motivated to render service, etc.
Actual situation: Exactly when scheduled to leave to set up the bookstall, ‘A’ had guests from another town. His relatives (who usually are co-operative and allow him to render service) on that day forced him to remain with the guests saying that otherwise henceforth they would stop him from rendering service. Since the telephones in his area were out of order he could not communicate this to the other seekers.
Frame of mind of seeker ‘A’: A feeling of guilt in the seeker’s mind as he lost the opportunity to serve the Guru’s mission.
Effects of expressing the reaction: Later when the chief seeker met ‘A’ and expressed his reaction, the latter was even more discouraged and due to the depression many days of spiritual practice were wasted.
Introspection required when a reaction arises: The chief seeker should have thought thus – Is this seeker always irresponsible ? Is he really lacking in the service attitude ? Does he pose as an obstacle in the propagation of the Guru’s mission ? Does he have any worldly problem which prevents him from rendering service ?, etc. These thoughts help in controlling reactions.

D. Since the Guru / God exists in each one of us, if we hurt someone we are actually hurting the Guru / God is the awareness we should harbour.

E. If a seeker commits a mistake, he should be made aware of it and at the same time he should be loved as much as the other seekers.

F. Often one tends to pay attention to the defects and not the virtues of a seeker. Ignoring the defects, one should appreciate the good qualities of a seeker and should make an attempt to inculcate them in oneself.

G. Seeing the presence of the Guru in others, we should love them just as we love the Guru.

H. Just as Saint Eknath quenched the thirst of a donkey by offering it the holy water of the Ganges which He had fetched from Kashi, so also one should learn to love animals, plants and non-living creation.

5. Learning

H.H. Maharaj has said, “Only the curious one is deserving of knowledge”. One should constantly learn to generate spiritual emotion in oneself. One can learn to enhance spiritual emotion through study, spiritual experiences obtained by oneself and others, from other seekers having spiritual emotion and saints. It is more beneficial to learn it from seekers having spiritual emotion and saints. Since it is not possible for everyone to learn this from saints, it is more feasible to learn it from seekers having spiritual emotion. If one is motivated to learn then The Lord too teaches through different media. This holy text gives examples at various junctures about how one can learn from seekers and spiritual experiences.

Commencement of awakening of spiritual emotion from the grief of being unable to attend a workshop on awakening spiritual emotion: After hearing about the spiritual experiences of seekers with respect to awakening of spiritual emotion, I too felt intensely that such spiritual emotion should develop within me. On 14th October 2002, I asked Sadhika for an appointment in ashram (hermitage) so that I could discuss this with her. She said I could visit her between 17th and 20th October. On 17th October when I asked her again as to whom I should meet there, she said that since H.H. Maharaj was at the ashram for the next two days and she would be leaving for Karnataka thereafter, I could talk to her only later. I felt very upset because I could not go to Ashram(hermitage) to develop my spiritual emotion. Later Sadhika told me that she had spoken to H.H. Doctor about what I felt and that He had said, “Good, spiritual emotion within him has been awakened !” She also added that this effect would last for 9 to 10 days. Ever since, my spiritual practice with respect to spiritual emotion acquired a different perspective. – Sadhak

6. Attempts to awaken spiritual emotion when performing worldly tasks besides spiritual practice

Worldly actions, the attitude towards the results obtained from them and the experiences obtained when performing these actions prove useful from the viewpoint of awakening spiritual emotion. In the beginning, there is a qualitative difference between actions done as spiritual practice and those done in worldly life. So at first it is easier to awaken spiritual emotion through actions done with respect to spiritual practice like ritualistic worship (puja), singing hymns (arti), repetition (chanting) of The Lord’s Name, rendering service unto the Absolute Truth (satseva), etc. Will even a seeker who is indulging in full time spiritual practice be able to do these tasks continuously throughout the day ? Certainly not, because in day-to-day life he has to do personal tasks such as bathing, taking treatment for an illness, doing household chores, caring for ill family members, etc. These restrict his actions pertaining to spiritual practice. Similarly, if attempts to awaken spiritual emotion only during actions related to spiritual practice are made then it poses a restriction to awakening of spiritual emotion. Hence one should perform every task as spiritual practice or with the spiritual emotion that ‘I am the servitor of the Guru’, then the entire process of awakening spiritual emotion is enhanced. Some examples cited below will show how a seeker staying at home can make efforts from this viewpoint.

  • Instead of sticking to the concept of ‘me and my family’ one should become expansive and harbour the spiritual emotion that one’s home is itself the Guru’s ashram. If one behaves as if the Guru is living in the home (ashram), one can actually feel His presence there. Besides, more thoughts about the Absolute Truth (Sat) are generated. This helps in creation of sattvik (sattva predominant) frequencies in the house.

    Feeling enthusiastic upon tidying the home with the spiritual emotion (bhav) that it is the Guru’s ashram and absence of exhaustion after doing it: When I had gone home for Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations I decided to clean the house. Before beginning, I recited a prayer unto the Guru thus, ‘Let me clean my house harbouring the spiritual emotion that it is Your ashram (hermitage). Please get this service done from me.’ That day despite cleaning up the entire house I did not feel tired. On the contrary, I felt happy doing the service and fresh as ever thereafter. – Sadhika

  • One should mentally offer one’s home to the Guru and then look after it with the spiritual emotion (bhav) that one is its trustee.
  • One should perform all household tasks as service unto the Guru, e.g. cooking, washing clothes, tidying rooms, etc.
  • If one uses every object in the house as a belonging of the Guru, then one handles it with care. Besides because of this, the presence of the Guru is felt.
  • One should remember the Guru while eating and harbour the spiritual emotion that the meal is the holy sacrament (prasad) of the Guru and water is the holy water (tirtha) from His feet.

7. Comparative importance of actions

Actions to awaken
spiritual emotion
Importance
%
Actions to awaken
spiritual emotion
Importance
%
1. Ritualistic worship 5 9. Sacrifice 10
2. Prayer 30 10. Spiritual love
      (priti)
10
3. Gratitude 10 11. Learning
   A. Through study

   B. Through spiri-
     tual experiences

   C. From a seeker
     having spiritual
     emotion

   D. From saints

10

10

30

30

4. Repetition (chant-
    ing) of The Lord’s
    Name
30
6. Holy company of
    saints
30
7. Service 10
8. Service unto the
    Guru
50

(Divine Knowledge received in the meditative state by Dr.)