Category Archives: Writings
How can we stop the negative influence of people who are close to us and enable them to change their thinking pattern?
This is a curious question.
I don’t know if you have ever made the attempt to change anyone. I don’t believe I have met anyone who has been successful in that effort. In fact, it is possible to expend a great deal of time and energy in such pursuits, without getting any success.
If you feel someone is having a negative influence on you, if you feel someone close is having a continuous negative influence on you, you do have a few options.
One possibility is to ascertain what you think you are gaining by remaining close to that person. Is it possible that on some level you are attached to their negative influence? Is it possible that their negativity offers you an excuse to criticise them and complain? Some people even have a need for someone to criticise and complain about. Perhaps there is a habit of finding it good to blame someone close. There could even be a compulsion to exert an even more negative influence on the designated close person than they have on us, and we want to somehow outdo them.
Sometimes it is even possible to believe, to know that we are right, and that we have the duty to correct another person and help them to conduct their life in a better way. Some even feel that others should not be so independent that they can conduct themselves however they want. We can even find ourselves so caught up with how badly-behaved others are that we become willing to sacrifice ourselves in order to improve them. We may feel this is a very charitable and responsible act.
In the process, we can fail to live our own lives. We may fail to understand that each person has their own destiny which they are playing out whether we like it or not. We may fail to realise that like attracts like, and that if they are so negative, then it may be a sure sign that we might be equally negative.
We may think we are so powerful that we can take over another person’s mind and alter their thinking patterns, change their karmic history and submit them to our superior will. We may continue with this activity for months, or even years.
We may get frustrated that our efforts are not bearing the fruits that we desire. We may decide that they need to be forced to behave other than how they are, through exerting pressure on them, manipulating them, threatening them or devising ways to scare them into complying with our higher wishes for their benefit.
These are a few common practices that some people like to do for those who are close to them, but who are exerting a negative influence.
Alternatively, we could opt to mind our own business and get on with our own lives. We might even check whether we can get close to any individuals who are not negative and would not be offended by any negativity we may be harbouring within ourselves.
It is said that you can judge people by the company they keep.
What is the most valuable and useful way to use our mind, our intelligence and our time? Thought, breath and time are considered the most valuable assets. So, when we take time to think about a question, we might want to calculate whether it is worthwhile taking up that question. How will it benefit me to spend time on this or that question? What can I learn that profits me? Should I really take up questions that are of no concern to me?
It is said there are three kinds of sins. One which is well known. We should not do what we are not supposed to do, we should not give sorrow. Second, we should not fail to do what we are supposed to do. Third, which is not so well known, we should not take sorrow. If we are negatively influenced by a close person, it means we are repeatedly taking sorrow from that person by our own volition. We do not wish them to give us sorrow, but we believe we are obligated to take the sorrow they are dishing out to us.
According to the third variety of sin, it seems that we should be exercising our right to not take the sorrow. It that seems too hard, then probably we are not strong enough to handle the situation. A good solution would be to increase our personal strength and resilience. Then their negativity will not have a negative influence on us. Thus, our problem is solved.
Raja Yoga is the Yoga of the Mind. It brings evenness of mind. It strengthens your intelligence, refines your conscience and provides you with an endless source of inner power.
The inner self, the spark of life, the being of light within is not your body. Your mind operates between your soul and your body.
Inside your being is your Will – the power that leads your mind. Yoga means what your mind is connected to, and then, what you experience in your mind. Yoga with the Supreme Being enables you to experience peace, love, bliss within your mind. Otherwise you experience physical sensations in your mind.
How do you practice Yoga of the Mind? You focus your mind upon itself, turning your attention within. Then you focus your mind towards the light beyond – the Source, the Force, the origin of all virtues and inner powers. You taste the sweetness of that peace and love, and draw it into yourself. You fill with that spiritual strength and become empowered to be your true self.
Denise Lawrence describes the emergence and the influence of the self indulgent actor who resides in all of us.
Satellite dishes perch on the shanty towns of Rio de Janeiro, Calcutta and the Indian reservations of Arizona, next to piles of corrugated iron and cardboard where people attest to the great power of entertainment and its hold over the world. The entertainer has enormous influence. However, little is known about how far the performance reaches into individual lives all over the world.
A blues guitarist recently on radio describes how sometimes his performance can be so perfect that the audience is totally moved and the other musicians entranced. It is as if he moves beyond performing, and observes from somewhere else; where the ego-consciousness is not involved. He can be moved to tears by his own music as if he were in the audience – an amazing, almost mystic experience.
Michelangelo, too, said of his sculptures “The figures are already in there, l just peel of the excess marble. ” Statues , though perhaps more in his time, continue to have a strong impact on people’s lives.
Most of us have had similar mystical moments. The difference between someone good and someone great is the ability to completely detach from their creation or performance. Though we may not exactly be remembered in history as great, whenever we experience that detachment we move into the dimension of greatness for a while. That sense of greatness is very real and an important spiritual component in a person’s life.
All of us are actors. If we look within, we are bound to discover a crowd of charachters. Within a single day, one plays such a variety of parts. Some parts are played in the same costume and sometimes costumes must be changed. At every change of scene, a new charachter within is projected into the drama of our lives.
We adopt certain postures that are peculiar to ourselves and certain situations. If we are in a business situation, our businessman will come out and we will talk in our business voice, we will dress, hold our body and be tough in a certain way and when the businessman’s part is over he merges within. The next situation calls forth forth another charachter inside us. We will find a few dozen charachters inside. Eventually the moment comes when we ask which one is me, or ” Will the real me please stand up ?” It’s one of the hardest questions to answer.
Humans are creatures of habit. Our inner charachters have their habits too, and every so often one will come out to say ” l am going to be here all day ! I don’t care what the situation is ! ” Some of us have a policeman inside and whether or not it is appropriate he could preside over the entire day. When we use a charachter inappropriately, it is inevitable that something will go wrong. If our observer self stays asleep, our various charachters, out of pure habit, may continue to act unsuitably. But if our observer awakens, he would ask “Hey, what’s going on ? This is not what you should be doing. ”
Being locked in a role makes us pretentious as we try to impress others, using our act to get everbody’s attention. When we are ‘on form’, and ‘on a roll’, indulging in our acting, we don’t care whether the situation merits it or not, we are having a good time and are not going to quit. We quickly tread on someone’s toes, become out of sync with our real self, our spirituality.
Our purpose in meditation is to awaken the observer self. Our alertness enables us to send the charachter whose time is up backstage, and to call the next player. When the observer is skilled, responsible and confident, this works well. The actor and observer are complementary opposites. A spiritual master is skilled in moving between the two and balances both to perfection.
Normally in Western culture, perfection is an extreme end of the scale and anything that is not at that extreme is not perfect. However, in truth, perfection is dead centre of the balance. We become out of balance when we move towards extreme success and perpetuate this display. This is called an ego problem.
Ego is slippery and difficult to see in the self, while it is easy to see in the next person. Spiritual study and practice invites us to work at very deep levels; deeper than those of the ego.
Our conscience can act as a barometer to identify instantly when we are wrong or right. A wrong act is produced by false ego. Spiritual work increases or sensitivity and skilfulness in reading our barometer and seeing our activity each day. When we are putting on an act, this is the last thing we want to do. The observer needs to be there with sufficient potency to counterbalance our self-expression when it moves into self indulgence. The observer will then send a message to the director.
How do we know when we are acting properly ? It feels right. The sensibility to recognise the line between what feels intuitively right and when it is wrong can be developed. Whenever we use the expression “It seemed like a good idea at the time…..” it indicates to our observer, who is connected with our conscience, the intellect and understanding, that we were being egotistical at the time.
We must also learn to observe our thoughts, and that includes comments on what we have done. Whether private, internal comments, or words that come out of our mouths, they are all tell-tale. We need to know what words are signs of. Then we can master the ‘production ‘ of the mind, body and soul.
The fundamental discernment we need to have is that the charachters inside us are not the essence. Each one is merely a projection of a facet which may be suitable for particular expression. Our problem is that we go overboard, or out of line.
Ultimately, we are the directors, and it is through our mastery and self-regard that we can ensure that the entire play, performed by ourselves as the main actors, unfolds to our total satisfaction.
Soul consciousness is derived from experiencing the self as the soul, having understood its definition. I am a point of incorporeal conscient light. The essential elements of my own self are purity, peace, love, power and bliss to the fullest extent. Recognising that the self is this, practicing to be like this, evokes the experience of being jut this. Using the mind to envision the self as invisible, immortal and ultra-subtle enables the self to experience itself. I am Me… or OM.. I am Peace. Om Shanti becomes your self-introduction. You introduce yourself to yourself as a peaceful being… detached.
Body consciousness is the endless whirling of the mind from one thought to another, associated or disconnected, thought. You identify yourself as your body, seeing your persona in comparison with others. Perceiving yourself to be greater than or less that the other. Negative emotions fuel your inner landscape yet you use a variety of tactics to avoid feeling your feelings. You find yourself constructing plausible masks, which you refine or replace when their luster dims. You find reasonable justifications for your weak actions.
The recommendation is this: Consider yourself to be a soul and focus your mind on the Source, the Supreme Power, the Higher Intelligence, God. Go within, stay within and savour your inner self. Be with yourself and keep the outside on the outside. Sitting in the consciousness of the soul, you gradually become silent. That is, the mind quietens down. I sit in the silent space mid-point between the extremes of happiness and sorrow that spin around noisily. Being still means just being… not doing.
Everywhere, souls seem to be impregnated with materialism… arrogance, greed or violence. Body Consciousness devours the higher aspects of your soul, drains its energy, and compels you to act against your own interests. The soul becomes burdened, bows under the weight and drags on. Body consciousness compels you to lay blame, generate complaints and criticisms to create the illusion of being OK. You, the soul, forget your essence and sink into lethargy, craving stimulation. In that state, many conclude there is no soul at all. There is only matter, electricity, self-gratification. Only soulless matter is real.
Soul Consciousness generates a balanced and disciplined life. Your daily routine is natural. You rise early to sit in contemplative silence, filling the self with light and power. You prepare and clean your body… make your mind ready to absorb wisdom and higher teachings. You move into the active day, serving to create a better world… attending to duties conscientiously detached… from time to time moving your mind beyond, ensuring that you don’t get caught up in the drama of action and reaction.
As the day draws to a close, you give time for your family, and turn your thoughts in service of the wider world. You review the ups and downs of your day, turn within for rest and recollection. You lay your body down and return to the realm of silence beyond.
Body Conscious life is random and undisciplined. You awaken when your work dictates, tumbling into coffee, shower, clothes, car, office addictive ways, your mind chattering and getting hyper. You take uncalculated risks, sometimes bellowing from the top of mountains, other times getting ground between mill stones of disastrous failures. You lose your sense of self, and avoid remembering your higher priorities. You may live in a state of denial, rejecting the voice of your conscience. You easily get bored with yourself and everything around you. You cry out for love, but can’t recognise it. You get drawn into temptations and emptiness. You sleep to forget and awaken late, perhaps a little shocked.
Soul Consciousness means to come to terms with all aspects of the self. The effort of soul consciousness is to become neutral in the face of all the good and bad that arise within the soul, and focus on your original eternal condition of purity, peace, power, love and bliss. Soul Consciousness means to become still and melt the effect of negativity, the weight that presses down upon the mind as a dark shadow of ill feelings. Spiritual depletion occurs when the soul has acted against itself repeatedly.
Soul Consciousness is being in your power. I , the soul, observe the performance of the other, detached and dispassionate, knowing who I am. Being in your power is an attitude, a position adopted vis-à-vis the other, or independently, so that no activities or behaviour impact you, or cause you to change your position. Self-identity and feelings of self are not subject to the attitude or position of the other. Inner power levels are high. Energy drainers cannot draw your vital essence because you do not permit it. You are naturally and consistently linked, and feel the presence of the Supreme Being with you.
Body Consciousness is to forget who you are and become as the other sees you or wants you to be. In Body Consciousness there are victims and perpetrators. In Soul Consciousness you are equals, comrades at arms addressing a common task, facing a common challenge and enjoying the fruits of shared victory. In Body Consciousness you fall into traps on the pretext of respect, love or honour. Your intellect ceases to serve you, your conscience has stopped functioning and you allow unhealthy relationships to occur. Your energy gets drained and your happiness has been robbed. You did not protect yourself due to lack of subtlety. You have all the information you need, but fail to use it. Your inner functioning is paralysed.
In Soul Consciousness you remember the Supreme Being. You view your priorities and interactions with others through the lens of the awareness of God. Your mind’s eye does not rush to people, places and things, assignments, failures or successes. Your inner eye sees the soul in front of you. Your soul is alight and empowered. You are aware. In Body Consciousness you lose yourself and cannot see who is in front of you. You have no sense of God. Your soul is dark. Soul Consciousness makes your intuition sharp and accurate. The right things happen fortuitously with the right people. Everything has meaning nd signals your forward movement. It verifies your steps.
In Soul Consciousness you don’t take sorrow. Your connectedness keeps you alert, mindful and careful. Someone may say something hurtful and you immediately rise into your power of tolerance. The electric bolt passes right through leaving no impact or impression. It does not lodge into your heart. In Body Consciousness you take on the negativity and take it in. You are super sensitive and have no resistance or resilience. Your mind gnaws wounds and increases their impact. You form a debt because you accepted sorrow without noticing.
Soul Consciousness gives you the power to flex with any scene within the Drama. Inner power is a set of tools, attitudes and poses that protect the soul. Pain taken into the soul at any point in life distorts and corrupts the essence. As long as there is pain, it drives character defects. The process of removal of pain from the soul is painful therefore tolerance is required. Tolerance means to detach and to surrender, letting go of all forms of ego. Ego is resistance, covering up, avoiding realities. Alternating, you have to face and tolerate. Discrimination and discernment, self-diagnosis of your character is required. See: what did I do to myself… what was done to me? Put it into perspective; see the origin, emergence and dissolution of all occurrences. Discern the patterns, and adjust. Neither you not anyone else is to blame. You become reconciled to the paradoxes of happiness and sorrow, justice and injustice.
Soul Consciousness gives you enough distance to judge yourself accurately through rigorous self-checking that reveals the true nature of your motivations. The effort of Soul Consciousness is to become honest. Soul Consciousness tunes you to the original essential frequency of your being… a soundless harmonious note exclusive to you. Any dissonance becomes tangible and the conscience catches the force that drives the soul to perform negative actions. The activated conscience upholds the harmony and integrity of the soul, refusing all thoughts that lead to dissonance. The intellect begins to work.
Body Consciousness is self-sabotage… you undermine yourself, deliberately, knowingly, yet unconsciously. You know, but don’t know, you see, but don’t see yourself. Body Consciousness raises excuses. I had to because… I couldn’t because… I can’t because… Soul Consciousness says: I can… I will… I am…
Body Consciousness sees no way out of dilemmas. Alternately it paralyses the soul or takes you into depression. Your courage ebbs away and is replaced by moral cowardice. You begin to lie and turn your back on truth. You lose your ability to empathise and may become cruel in the name of social conventions. You begin to accumulate debt and your mind creeps into unconsciousness. Your heart no longer has a place for God as it fills with waste and negativity. Now you avoid the disturbing sound of silence.
Soul Consciousness is satisfaction. It is an inner state of total acceptance of the self, or all others and of all scenes of the drama of life. In Body Consciousness you flip flop on the roller coaster of the pairs of opposites, loving and hating, exuberant and in despair. In Soul Consciousness you are calm, deep, and beyond storms. You are balanced in the knowing that nothing can destroy you, nothing can corrupt you and nothing can break into your harmony. You are fully integrated. You are ready. You can leave and return in your perfected state, both physical and spiritual.
The Quantum Leap
Crossing and Re-crossing Time
Taking a quantum leap traditionally means travelling in time. It is said that time is like an arrow. If you shoot an arrow indefinitely in one direction, after some time it will hit you in the back. It would have travelled 25 000 miles – the circumference of the Earth. The trajectory of an arrow would have to follow the curvature of the Earth due to gravity. To make a quantum leap we must determine whether or not time is an arrow. The arrow of time implies: going in a particular direction. The arrow came from the past, it is here now in the present and it is going into the future. The question is whether time moves in a straight or a curved line?
Space is vast, but mathematically, if you send a rocket directly upwards, after some time it would arrive at the place it has departed from. This indicates that space is also curved. In the physical world, we operate in the vectors of time and space.
Time is another dimension and it too is curved. If you go very far into the future, you will arrive at yesterday. And if you go very far into the past, you will arrive at tomorrow. You don’t normally think of the trajectory of time as curved because there is no influence of Earth’s gravity. How long is time? You would probably say: eternal. There is a song: “I will love you till the end of time,” that means forever. But how long is that?
For everybody who has a regular watch, time is going round and round. The galaxy is going round and round. The Earth is going round and round. It appears that everything is going round and round except the human mind. Human minds go in straight lines, or more often randomly, all over the place.
It takes one day for the Earth to complete one rotation, and one year for the Earth to complete a rotation around the Sun. We are used to cycles. A year passes through stages of autumn, winter, spring, summer and again autumn, winter, spring, summer. The phases of the moon pass through a monthly cycle full moon, quarter and half, last quarter and then it goes round again. Everything we have to do in time in a practical way is cyclical.
There is the life cycle of an animal or a human. Everybody starts as a baby, become a child, an adolescent, adult and dies and next generation continues. When a person dies it is said: his time has come. The passage of time is the movement from new to old, young to old. The cyclic process of time is found in agriculture. In spring, the leaves start to emerge and grow. In summer the flowers come out. In autumn, you get the fruits. And then the only thing that can survive the winter is the seeds. And once the winter is past spring comes again and the seeds wake up.
Conventional science defines time as linear: 14 billion years ago there was a big bang and after another 14 billion years, there will be another big bang. By that calculation we are somewhere in the middle of the time. It is OK because there is still plenty of time to go. We are here in between two big bangs. In the beginning there was a big bang and the material universe spontaneously came into existence and at the end there will be another big bang and it will cease. They don’t say what causes either of the bangs. The beginning of time is a long time ago and the end of time is a very long time so in between, they say, we will no doubt resolve the problems of our existence.
Conventional science believes we have been evolving very slowly over time. They say that the human stage of evolution is the greatest achievement, the best. But if you look around circumstances seem to be getting worse and worse. From the economic, social, physical and mental health, climate, pollution point of view, there has never been as bad a time as we are in now. We are in a very critical time and we don’t really know what to do. People are worried about this.
Astrology on the other hand says: it is not 14 billion years in the past and 14 billion years in the future, but the whole thing is just 28,000 years. This is the time it takes for all the stars to return to their original positions in their cycle. Astrologers calculate the past, present and future on the basis of the positions and relationships of the stars.
We normally operate in the awareness of chronological time. We born at a certain point of time, we live during a certain time and then eventually we die when the time comes. We have calendars and agendas that work in chronological time. Chronological time says: this happened, and then that and that and so on. In chronological time, you don’t really take note of the quality of time. Chronological time is represented by the dash between your date of birth and your date of death. Isn’t our existence is greater than this one inch hyphen?
Greek philosophy describes both Chronos time and Kairos time. The Greek god of time is Chronos, who is also the god of death. In terms of chronological time, everyone is heading toward his or her death. Of course, we don’t like this idea.
Chronos is the primordial deity, who personifies time and destiny. He is immaterial and appeared at the moment of the creation of the world. He has the body of a snake and three heads, one human, one is a lion and one a bull. He entwines around his wife Anake, the goddess of necessity and fate. They surround the world as an egg. Their role is to bring the celestial world into eternal rotation. According to Orphic cosmogony they generate Chaos and Ether.
Chronos is also chronological or rotational time. Your calendar, your school year, your planning, is all chronological time. You get born, you go to school, you go to university, you get a job, you get married, have children, you get old, you die. This is the life cycle of humanity. In this way, you get a child, he carries on, he gets children, they carry on. You have your great, great grand parents, your grand parents, your parents, you, your children, your grand children, your great grand children. In that way, we think that we can make ourselves immortal through chronology. This is how people normally think. We can call this material consciousness.
The Greek God Kairos is the god of a very different kind of time. Kairos time provides a different sense of time. There are certain moments in life which are highly influential and may change the direction of your life. In Kairos time you qualify time in terms of events that make a deep impact on the quality of your life, and how you experience your existence. It gives meaning that is beyond mere chronological existence. Some of those very special key moments are enlightenments, but some are traumas. They change you so totally that you can never return to what you were before. These are very important defining moments of time.
Kairos time is the opportune moment. It is a dimension of time which creates depth within the instant. A door opens to another perception of the universe, an event, or the self. It is a question of a non material concept of time measured not by the clock but by its impact. The Greek god, Kairos is represented by a young man wearing nothing but a quiff of hair on his head. When he passes close to us there are three possibilities. Either we don’t see him, or we see him and do nothing, or at the moment when he passes, we put out our hand and grab the quiff of hair, that is we seize the time, as in “Carpe Diem”. This concept presented in the film: The Dead Poet’s Society.
Kairos is an ancient Greek word meaning the right or opportune moment, the supreme moment. The ancient Greeks had two words for time, chronos and kairos. While the former refers to chronological or sequential time, the latter signifies a time between, a moment of indeterminate time in which something special happens. What the special something is depends on who is using the word. While chronos is quantitative, kairos has a qualitative nature. Kairos also means weather in both ancient and modern Greek. The plural, kairoi means the times. In the New Testament kairos means “the appointed time in the purpose of God”, the time when God acts (e.g. Mark 1.15, the kairos is fulfilled).
For how long do I exist? Consider also what is the nature of your existence. For most people their existence is that hyphen on their grave stone in between their date of birth and date of death. It is about two centimeters long! Short!
What is the shape of eternity? The horizontal figure eight symbol. There is also the symbol of yin yang: an S in the center of a circle, a little black in the white, a little white in the black. This is the symbol of your soul within eternity. The small dash between your birth date and your death date is a small section of that cycle.
What is before birth and after death? As an eternal soul, on some level you must be active and aware before birth and after your death. You exist always, there is no starting point, and no ending point either, since you are eternal. Is it possible not to have an ending point but yet have a starting point? Mathematics clarifies that if there is no end there is no start. If there is a start, there is an end. So if you say that you are eternal it means you have no start. Why is this important?
We need to make a quantum leap here. Is there anybody who does parachuting? It is a very good exercise to drop yourself into emptiness. This is a leap into a different kind of consciousness.
What is the meaning of death. Do we go to Heaven or to Hell? Some people want to go to heaven which is definitively considered to be somewhere up there. Depending on which part of the Earth you are going to die: you may or may not go into the right direction.
This is the problem with the concept of “up”… Otherwise “down” refers to hell. Wherever you happen to be, “down” will be the center of the Earth. If you have to go to hell, there is no problem, you just go down and here you are! But if you have to go up, it is large! The meaning of up and down may be more qualitative than geometrical.
When somebody dies we say: “his time has come.” In many languages the word “time” also means death. In India the word Kaal has three meanings: first is time; secondly yesterday as well as tomorrow. (There is no terminological differentiation between yesterday and tomorrow); and thirdly kaal means death.
There is a mythological figure in the West called Father Time, a robed skeleton holding a scythe, also called the Grim Reaper or death. He comes along and cuts you down when it is time to go. We are in time when we are alive in the human form in human society.
The Kaalchakra: the cycle of time, is divided in four sections. The first quadrant is gold, the second silver, the third copper, and the fourth iron. The process of going from gold to silver, then silver to copper then copper to iron is a decline in value from a metallurgical perspective.
The soul passes through time, and is affected by events. If something good happens the soul is happy. If something bad happens the soul is unhappy. When you experience things are going well, you have more energy and when things are going badly, you have less energy, and feel more tired.
When you, the soul, pass through time you also pass through space. Time is how long it takes to do something. Space is where you do that thing. So the soul acting, in both time and space. When the soul is not in time and space, it is silent, still and at peace.
Any form of energy that comes into action loses power. Accordingly, the cycle of time does not make us progressively more evolved but rather we become progressively less evolved. Everything gets older, weaker and less powerful when it passes through time and space. You pass through gold then become silver, then copper then iron. How do you become gold again? To change from iron to gold is an alchemical process. The eternal soul has to find the alchemical stone to become gold again.
In India the word Yuga refers to the Age or Epoch. There are different ages and when one age finishes, another age starts. Satyuga, Treta, Dwapur, Kalyuga are the words for the Golden, Silver, Copper and Iron Ages. The New Age people talk about the age of the Aquarius. The New Age movement arose in the 1970s because a substantial group of people felt that an old age is finishing and a new age is coming. In western civilization, we think of time as the idea of slow evolution. There is the paradoxical concept of humans being next to God, yet behaving in ways towards the earth and each other that are the total opposite.
Western civilization has persisted for about a thousand years. In school, you are taught the history of the past one thousand years. In England where I went to school, they began history in the year 1066. That was when Christianity was formally established, and cathedrals were built. Before that there were the Dark Ages after the fall of the Roman Empire, and before that the Greek and Roman civilizations, the pre-Christian area.
Historians and archeologists say the cradle of civilization was Mesopotamia. However now the evidence points to the Harrapan civilization in India preceding the Mesopotamian civilization. That was the start. And before that? We don’t know. Religionists point to ante diluvium and flood, and before that, the Creation. And before that the Big Bang.
Biblical time started 6,000 years ago. They calculate who beget whom from Adam and Eve all the way to the Apocalypse, and return of Christ who brings 1000 years peace in the New Jerusalem. That means that Christianity based Western Civilization also has a background where time moves in circles.
Drastic Cataclysmic Change
Indian civilization refers to Satyuga, Treta yuga, Dwapur yuga, Kaliyuga, the Golden, Silver, Cooper and Iron Ages. The Golden Age is when human civilization is heaven, everything is beautiful, marvelous and everybody is good. The Iron Age is followed by another Golden Age. The time when everything is very dark, bad, negative and evil immediately precedes the Golden Age. Time is said to start when everything is absolutely perfect and then slowly degenerates. It reaches to the point when the human condition is absolutely abject. Then it changes drastically from absolute hell to perfect heaven.
Back to The Present Moment
Do you control everything that happens? There are some things that you have no control over. There are some things that you decide to control, just as when you are walking you use your left foot, then your right foot, etc. There are some moments when things are happening to you, and another moments where you make things happen. There are some moments when you are supposed to act, but you do not. There are some times when you do the wrong thing. There are some moments when you do the right thing by mistake! There are other moments when no matter what you do, it will be the wrong thing.
It is important for the soul to be right here right now, to be present for the present moment. The phrase “Be here now” was made famous by Ram Das in the 1970’s. In their minds, most people spend time somewhere in the past, or the future. Ask yourself: are you where your body is, or are you where your mind is?
If you are really here right now, then you are present both with your body and your mind. That is quite rare. Most of our activities do not require 100% of our attention. Our mind is free to roam around. Indeed, many people say that they have difficulty concentrating, and admit that they get distracted easily. It is difficult for people to be that much focused because our mind is so strongly influenced by our sense perceptions. Sense perceptions keep us distracted. If you are really present at the present moment, then the actions you perform will be good, considered, conscious acts that you would take responsibility for.
When the map of the Earth is represented as a rectangle, it places, for example, Spain in the middle, the East on the left and West and the right. If you want to go from Spain to Vancouver you have to cross the Atlantic, plus the North American continent. That is 8 hours time difference which means 8 longitudes. The representation discourages you from thinking that is better to go North. You think we should go West, you can’t imagine it is shorter because visually on a flat map it seems longer. But it is shorter if you go North. If you would place the North Pole in the middle of the map then you would think about the journey differently. The Earth is a ball. Our flat two dimensional maps create an inner sense of Earth as flat.
The iconography of the linear thinking is a similar distortion. When you travel in an airplane to the other side of the planet you travel straight but you actually follow the curvature of the Earth. Even if you are walking straight in the middle of this room you are sill following the curvature of the Earth. Our minds and intellects are limited by the presenting iconography. In order to make a quantum leap we need to become independent of the influence of iconography.
Transformation of Consciousness
Making a Quantum Leap refers to coming into the consciousness of the soul. The concept of making a Quantum Leap is deep and not simply a matter of taking a jump from physical to a spiritual consciousness.
Transformation of Consciousness is reflected in the quality of your life. Are we living the most natural life possible? Is my life natural, harmonious? Do you feel that your life is artificial, stressful, you don’t get enough sleep, you can’t relax, you feel you never have enough time and you wish your life could be a little bit natural? A change in consciousness creates change in the quality of your time.
The Confluence Age
The Confluence Age is a time of total transformation. This Confluence Age is actually filled with power by a mind which is not a human mind, the Higher Intelligence or divine intellect. He is considered to be capable of causing complete transformation.
When we are in an ordinary consciousness we are stuck in the Iron Age, and heading towards deep trouble. But there is another energy which is raising the quality of everything. To be part of that, you need to put your consciousness on to that other position of time. That means: a change of consciousness creates a change of time.
The change of consciousness is to move away from the everyday physical consciousness and consider yourself as an immortal soul. In this consciousness you can have direct connection with the divine intelligence and you change yourself in order to change your karma. The everyday reality is going downwards, but your mentality will take you upwards to an elevated awareness. That means that future is coming toward you and you are mentally connected with it in advance. Your intelligence starts to operate in the manner of the future age as you let go of the old age.
The mentality in the Iron Age is going toward materialism. It is driven by material values. Whereas your spiritual consciousness is driven by spiritual values. So the reason why you do, what you do, is based on spiritual considerations rather than materialist ones. We also need a substantially higher energy level. Awareness change is based on identity change. You draw on that spiritual energy to elevate yourself. In that sense your feet are on the ground of the Iron Age and your head is oriented toward the significance of the Confluence Age.
You are then living a double life. For the everyday purposes you are in an everyday consciousness otherwise you are in a higher spiritual consciousness. The actions you do in that higher consciousness while you are connected with the higher intelligence actually cause the Iron Age to disappear and the that Golden Age to emerge.
To be part of this transformation, means to be certain in your consciousness that the ancient past is the future. It is predestined, it is fixed, and it is returning once again. When you connect your mind with that, you create the energy that makes it come.
Mental Time – Thought and Speed
In your mind you can go anywhere, but not with your body. You are using memory. For example, I can say: “in your mind go to New York.” You go, you know what it looks like, sounds like. In your mind, you can go to your childhood, when you were ten years old. The speed of thought is instant.
The speed of physical action is much slower. For example, when you fast, you have lot more time. It takes so much time to buy, cook, eat the food, then do the washing up, put it away and think about the next meal. People who fast have a lot of time. You might be surprised how much time it takes to eat!
How much time do you devote to commuting. I use to live in Los Angeles and most people drive two hours to work and two hours home again. It is eight hours work, four hours travelling. Twelve hours with the commute!
Every soul performs actions in time and space. Your actions can be acts of mind, verbal or physical acts. Many people spend a lot of time talking on the telephone. I did some research and I found that you can say anything you want to say within 37 seconds. We tend to repeat ourselves a lot. If we only say what we have to say once, we would save a lot of time. I don’t know why we talk so much but we do. I think also people are afraid of silence.
Making a Quantum Leap is changing from material consciousness to spiritual consciousness. Are you a soul conscious soul or a body conscious soul? You have a soul. Are you conscious of your soul with your sense of self as a soul, or do you think: I have a soul but basically I am a body? In the morning when you go in the bathroom and you look at your face in the mirror do you see yourself or do you see your face? Is that the same thing? It is not really the same thing. Then there is another way to think about it: do you know who you are?
Space and Perception
The way we normally live in terms of space is on Earth. We can walk, go on a horse, a train, a car, an airplane, a rocket and we move around the Earth or slightly beyond it. The way we operate in time and space is primarily through our sense perceptions. We perform actions and those actions take time. They occur in space. This is a normal way of existing.
This is because the human mind is greatly influenced by sense organs and perceptions. Einstein said that sense perception is useful only for everyday reality. Once you get beyond it, sense perception is deceptive and ceases to provide the observer with reliable data.
At Stanford University, California, research was done on how some primitive tribes perceive things differently than we in the west. A tribesman with a herd of animals in a mountain area can see over the mountain. How? Because he is not limited by the idea that he can’t, he does not know that seeing through mountains is impossible. He can see round the other side of the mountain because he doesn’t have our mentality that says that you can’t see the other side of the mountain. He uses his powers of perception differently from westerners. Our awareness has become very limited by our physical perception of everyday reality.
We humans are intelligent. But if you read the newspapers, you might think that we are not intelligent enough, because everything we do seems to make matters worse. Actions motivated by negative emotions like greed, anger etc. make everything worse. We would like to do the right thing but somehow we can’t.
There is a crisis of the will. The will is weak right now. Where is your will located? Is it somewhere in your mind? Is it in your heart or in your intellect? Is it some sort of muscle? Actually your will is in your soul. The soul itself has to be regenerated. The source for the soul is the Supreme Being. That is a very powerful force which is also known to operate at the end of time and at the beginning of time. This is referred to as the Alpha and the Omega.
Karma: Cause and Effect
People want to know the future, yet are convinced it cannot be known in advance. Whatever you do is the cause of some effect, and that effect is the cause of another effect. The last effect is ultimately the first cause. We are talking about eternity. If you think of time in terms of cause and effect, then effects become causes of other effects and it keeps going until you have a circle that represents the sum total of all causes and effects. The last effect becomes the first cause. You keep going until finally you come back to where it started from. Time goes like that and arrows go like that. Your clock is going like that.
In Singapore, there is a statue whose arm is so long that it circles the world and its finger returns to touch his back. (see beginning of article) How far could your arm or action stretch and where would it ultimately reach? This metaphor defines the law of karma; your hand is the instrument for action, and the consequences of whatever actions you perform automatically return to touch your back.
All of us are continuously performing action. To act is to plant seeds. According to the seed you plant, you must accept the fruit of that seed. This is the philosophy of karma: every action produces an equal and opposite return. The consequences of karma are short term, medium term and long term. Short can be as short as instantaneously and long can be thousands of years. So whatever you do first, whenever you begin to act in your existence, is also the fruit you experience at the end of time.
Free will or Pre-destination
Some people question whether we have freewill or whether everything is predestined. Some say: “We have freewill!” and others say: “No, everything is predestined!…I don’t have to do anything, it will happen by itself.” It is subtle because we have to catch which moment is free will and which moment is predestined.
Do you believe you have a destiny? A few believe they have a destiny and quite a few don’t. Nobody knows his destiny. Some people can feel it. Jimmy Carter said that he felt that he was destined to become president of America and he became it. When you ask young people: what will you be when you grow up? They often say they cannot see any thing in the future. The primitive tribes in the Stanford research project, could remember the future because they did not know that the future can’t be known in advance. It all depends on your mentality.
The present moment is the razor’s edge between the past and the future. The present lasts for one second, and when that second is gone, you have no more control over it. People are concerned about their free will, their freedom of action. If you ask whether there is pre-destination or free will, most people assert: “we are free!”
If you are distracted during one particular second, are you free and in control of your action during that second? I would say: you are not free. It is in such a moment that you say: “oh! I made a mistake!” But you cannot return back to that second because it is gone into the past. The next second has arrived and you have to be present and available to act in that second. But if in your mind, you are regretting your mistake of the previous second, then you also miss the next second! You have control over your actions only when you are present for that actual second of time.
Reversal of Time During the Confluence Age
There is another kind of time which is going in the opposite direction of the chronological time. The Diamond Age, also known as the Auspicious Confluence Age. To raise the quality from the Iron Age to Golden Age is not possible. Except that at the end of the Iron Age, you do rise and arrive at the beginning of the Golden Age. The diamond time is super-imposed upon regular time. The Supreme Power causes a complete change or reversal of time. Chronological Time continues to pursue its course. However, for the quality to transform from iron to gold requires a total change. This force brings a different time that operates parallel and opposite to current time. It resembles the bi-directional flow of water in the Bosphorus at Istanbul.
Chronological time, in terms of quality of time, is deteriorating. To move from the iron to the gold, you need a form of time which is ameliorating. There has to be a force operating in time that rejuvenates everything, changing the old to young or new. That force has to operate on people physically, mentally, socially, financially, spiritually, in every possible way. That is an extremely powerful force which carries the state of the world and the states of the people from the bottom to the top. That is an extraordinary transformative power. It is an intelligent power. In India a name for God is Mahakaal, which is usually translated as the great death, but it can just as well be translated as the Great Time, which, by extension, can be interpreted as the force that reverses the effect of time.
Time actually doesn’t necessarily exist in and of itself. Time is computed as how long it takes to do something. It is said that time is money. Time can be compared to money in the sense that when you perform negative actions, you go into negative time, or negative fortune and invoke negative events in the future. Negative time is also experienced as loss of the treasure of time. Time is not available for you, time does not cooperate with you. If you would see into the minds of all of people here, consider how many negative feelings will be produced in one day? Moments of sorrow, hopelessness, doubt, moments of anger or irritation? They tend to be much more frequent and durable than moments of extreme faith in yourself and in your destiny. The predominant energy of thoughts and feelings of the people is declining to a lower vibrational quality or getting dissipated.
Positive Time Through Pure Thought
There is a distinction between time that is going into negative energetic force, based on material values; and time that is going into positive energetic force, based on spiritual values.
Instead of being in the negative, let your mind hold only powerful, pure, true thought. That changes the quality of time. You can say that your feet are in the Iron Age descending into the negative energetic field, yet your mind is connected with the much more powerful energy of understanding that is rising into a positive energetic field.
Material values or materialism cause the mind to move into negative vibrations which lead to Ego or negative self image. When a person compares what they possess with what someone else has, it generates a negative inner feelings or experience. In terms of possessions you say: I have less and those people have more. Confusing what you have with what you are, leads many to be motivated by acquiring possessions and positions. In that case they can be easily corrupted. But what you are and what you have are two different things.
Is it better to be a weak soul in powerful position or a powerful soul in a weak position?
By shifting your sense of awareness to a spiritual orientation, you give higher value to what you are than what you have. The Iron Age gets progressively stronger, the souls get weaker, and acquire things through corrupt means, while a powerful soul who maintains his integrity gets less and less. You all just indicated that it is better to be a powerful soul in a weak situation, because by moving a little forward in time, clearly a powerful soul will attract what is necessary and a weak soul will lose it.
From Negative to Positive Quality of Time
To go through a change of time, from negatively charged energetic time to positively charged energetic time, you need great personal strength. You have to get it from up a source outside the material universe. Whenever there is huge change there is also a lot of disturbance and chaos. The key thing is to take maximum power from above in order to have greater personal stability while circumstances here below become progressively unstable.
You have to be spiritually powerful to connect with that one above. This connection will carry you across disturbing times, and enable you to get all the necessary internal ingredients to carry you across physical hardship. If you are weak inside, it is impossible to cross difficult times. But if you are aware, spiritually awake and connected to the higher power, then at such a time that power is with you, and you will just cross.
Everything is going into negative energetic time, but you are moving in the opposite direction, into positive energetic time. This takes you to a destination where circumstances and physical matter tend towards a beautiful, natural, correct way of life. This positioning of the self is a form of leadership. You lead the way through simply knowing: I am a spiritual being, I have access and I take that strength and I go across. Others will follow.
Shifts in Consciousness Create Shifts in Values
Throughout time there is a change in the quality of your existence. At times the quality of your existence is very good. Considering time in terms of the effect of action, depending on the quality of action of humanity in general, the consequences of our activities would be the quality of the world we live in. Some people’s actions have very little impact on society. But the actions of people who are in the most powerful positions in any gathering or country influence a vast population. What a king says influences everybody in the kingdom. The actions of people who are in high political, economic, religious position, influence many. The actions of others will influence only their family. There is a law that says: The higher the position a person occupies, the greater their accountability. An eternal immortal soul who comes into action and time is also accountable.
Material values originate in the concept of being matter. For your body, you need a house, money, a car, clothing, airplanes, you need to eat, and you need various other items. Material values come from thinking of your self as an object. You say: my body is male or female. If it is mine it is a possession, an object. But if you think that it is me that means I am an object. Then you have to ask yourself: are you a possession or a possessor? If you say: “this is my body” who is the possessor of your body. It should be you, the eternal immortal soul.
The elements that make up a human soul are not physical. Your body is made of air, earth, fire, water, ether. Ultimately, your body is a leather bag of warm mud with bones in it to give it shape. Most of people think about it like that: “this one is a very beautiful warm mud and this one is a very ugly warm mud.” Through our auditory and visual perception, we are strongly influenced by these warm muddy items. But, you are not warm mud or a piece of fashion! The soul is made of love, peace, purity, inner power and bliss. Are you peace, bliss, love, purity and inner power or are you a bag of warm mud?
In the world today, more and more things are in the hands of less and less people, and more and more people find themselves with practically no resources. These are the consequences of materialism. If everyone were motivated by purity, peace, love and bliss it would be a different world. What is necessary to change from material values to spiritual values? One is to have a very good memory. Can you remember back to the beginning of time? The beginning of time was the Golden Age or Paradise. Paintings of paradise portray everybody there as quite rich. There are no poor or sick people. It is very beautiful. There is no pollution. There are no wars. It was based on spiritual values. Now you have pollution, war, poverty etc. that are the ultimate consequence of actions based on material values.
Material consciousness creates confusion as to how we value ourselves and other human beings. Some people identify with their religion. That is deeper. “I am a catholic.” Nobody will say: “I am only a catholic.” Why? That means something: it refers to your values and to your spirituality. It brings you to the question of self-honor. Sometimes you hear people say: I am a bad catholic! That means: I don’t go to church as often as I should. It doesn’t mean: I perform criminal actions. Behind your religion, there are other more subtle identifications. That is your spirituality.
Shifts in Values Create Shifts in Circumstances
When people acquire physical wealth on the basis of material values, it depletes the Earth’s non renewable resources, and compromises its potential for sustaining renewable resources. They say there is enough for everyone’s needs but not for everyone’s greed. If you destroy the Earth, where would you live?
When you fill yourself, the depleted soul, with the higher qualities of love, peace, happiness etc, which come from a non material and extra-terrestrial spiritual source, you get a different result. Individuals are spiritual beings so their source must be spiritual and extra-terrestrial. The Ocean of love, peace, bliss, purity, inner power, strength and wisdom dwells beyond the material universe. That intelligence radiates a different energy which changes the quality of time and of matter.
The Quantum Leap is: Shifting from Masks to the Glow
Behind the masks of material identities, lies the glow of spirituality. Spirituality is very subtle and intangible. In material consciousness, it is difficult to grasp. Consider the question: who is the real me behind the mask? It is difficult to answer because it lies beyond your professional identity, nationality, or social position. It is difficult to grasp because you are really trying to apprehend your own soul, and you can’t see a spirit.
The masks are false due to being impermanent, and none of them are really you. It is just a production or performance. We perform: I am the father or the mother, or I am the boss or the employee, or I am the stupid one, or I am the murderer. Different facets. But can you be totally real and with no mask?
It takes a lot of courage to remove your mask. During Halloween or Mardi Gras when they put on masks it gives them permission to do anything they want. With your mask on, you feel free to do anything you like, because nobody knows who you are. One Halloween event I went with no mask, but I put a wig on and nobody could tell who I was though my face was visible. Hair makes so much difference. I put on a bright red dress and long blond hair. I saw the same people that I was with during the whole day. Nobody knew who I was. I was very surprised.
The mask implies that nobody really knows who you are. When you take off the mask, the essential reality of yourself becomes visible. It is risky because they will see you totally. Do you have anything to hide? You know what you might want to hide. There is a doubt that maybe, deep down, I am not perfect. If everybody would see how imperfect you are, that would be very delicate. They would see your pain, your shame, all the things that you normally hide behind the masks. That is why everybody likes masks.
The quantum leap is to remove the mask. It is a risk that requires enormous courage because of feelings like: “maybe they might reject me.” Nobody likes to be rejected. We put on a mask and say: “don’t reject me, I am very interesting, I am beautiful, I am rich, I am important.” We want people to appreciate us. But if we take off the mask, there is a risk: “maybe they will like me, maybe they won’t.”
Then you have to ask yourself a deeper question: do I like me? You have to be really honest with yourself: do I love myself? Do I like me? Am I honorable in my own eyes? We have to think about our honor. When you take off all the masks and go deep inside, if you can say: “yes I am honorable”, then you are very ready to take off your mask.
Spirituality means: looking behind the mask to see what is there. Material consciousness is focused on the mask. The mask is everything. In material consciousness there is nothing behind the mask. The quantum leap to spiritual consciousness is the intention to look behind the mask. This is why we question: who am I? My mask is my performance, but who am I behind it?
Otherwise, you think about your life, and find it is all about role. You play different roles with different souls. When you think about your identity, you may say: “I am a doctor.” Many people identify with their professional mask. Your professional mask indicates how much money you earn, which in turn indicates your social status. In material consciousness the value of a person is how much money they earn. This is why people like to identify with their professional mask. Sometimes when I ask the women in particular about what they do, I hear this word “only”: “I am only a housewife.” You would never hear the doctor say: “oh, I am only a doctor.” But a housewife says: “I am only a housewife.” And then I ask then: “why are you saying only? Just because you don’t get paid does it mean that you don’t have any value? Is that why you say I am only a housewife! Or only a voluntary worker…”
It is very difficult to know who you are. The people in the house where you live: your wife, your husband, your children, your parents, do you know who they are? Do you think they know who you are? They probably know a little bit. A person is like a diamond with 56 facets. Others may see two or three of your 56 facets. Your friends see other facets. At work, they see yet other facets. And you have very private facets that nobody sees. Which one is you? The facets are masks. Ask yourself: “Ok! Is any one of the masks the real me?” Or: are all of them only masks? Usually, we think some of them are masks and some of them are me. In spirituality, they teach us that we are actors. That means all of the masks are masks. So who is the real you behind the mask?
Have you have ever seen a diamond through a microscope? Inside a diamond there is a glow. If you remove all the masks behind which you are normally work: how do you feel? You would be just a glow with no mask. Probably when God is looking at you, He sees that glow. If you would be God, would you look at the glow or the mask?
The Third Eye
Have you heard about the third eye? Of course, everybody only has two eyes! But it is very useful to have a third eye. The third eye sits in the middle of the forehead. The two eyes see everyday reality and the assisted two eyes see non visible material reality, using technical assistance like x-rays to see inside the body, or telescopes to see planets which are light years away. Technology can show us infra-red or ultra-violet light. The naked eyes see only within a certain spectrum and within a certain size range which we can call everyday reality.
To go outside everyday reality, we use scientific instruments. We use the microscope to see very small things, telescope to see very distant things. We use skype to see somebody who is not in the same room with us. Technology extends our range of perception of material reality.
Technology stops where spirituality starts. The third eye represents the soul’s ability to perceive non-physical things. It is not possible to see a soul. You can understand what a soul is. And when you do, you say: “oh, I see!” One type of seeing is visual; other type of seeing is understanding. The third eye is not for seeing material things but for perceiving non material realities.
The third eye refers to your mental and intellectual capacity to conceptualize things that are outside material reality. Once you get to the limit of the material you reach the spiritual. Beyond physics there is metaphysics. The mask is material. The glow or the intelligence behind it, is spiritual.
Material Body, Spiritual Soul
All of us are a combination of two completely distinct things. You have the body and then you have the soul. Have you seen a dead body? There is no soul. Everything is there but you say: “he is not there.” There is just a body but not a person. We say: this is the remains of the person. That means: when a person is dead, what’s left? When we are alive, we don’t call this body the remains. I am here. But if I go, then this remains.
The quantum leap is to shift from the idea of “I am this living, moving, breathing, active, visible person” to “I am the glow behind the mask.”
How do we do that? There is an internal positioning that you can try out, to perceive the difference between me and my body. Almost everybody has their eyes. Your eyes are comparable to cameras. Imagine a little spirit inside your head who is looking out through your eyes. Can you identify yourself with someone inside who is looking out through the eyes. Your eyes move around, right? You can focus close, you can focus far. You see the thing you are looking at, and you have your peripheral vision. Who is moving your eyes around like that? Or do they do it by themselves? Do they know what to do?
Do I look where I want, or do my eyes tell me what to see? Who is in charge? Sometimes you see something you are not supposed to see. Who decides what is bad? Your eyes don’t see something and then say: “oh I shouldn’t see that!” and look in another direction. Somebody inside decides. You say: “these are my eyes.” So who is the owner of your eyes? It is quite subtle. This is an exercise to distinguish between your sense organs of perception and you, the one who perceives visual phenomena through your eyes. You can close your eyes, and if you want and open up them again… Who decides? “I”. So again we return to this mysterious question: “who am I?”
Who is the soul? This is the very subtle question of your identity. The more you think about it, the more it forces you to let go of identifying with something that you realize is not your identity.
The Human Soul is Genderless
There are not female or male souls. You have a female or a male body. When you say: “I am a man” or “I am a woman” that is not true. I have a male body or a female body. I am genderless. What’s that? Am I feminine soul? Am I masculine soul? You can be feminine minded or you can be masculine minded. Some men are very feminine and some women are very masculine. Some people are perfectly balanced between the masculine and feminine. It is quite rare but it exists. Your spiritual self is genderless. Your body is the thing that gives you a gender.
It is said that the soul is light. The sun is also light. Usually they say the sun is masculine and the moon is feminine. “El sol y la luna.” This is because of the symbolic value of these celestial orbs. This is quite subtle. Everybody’s body is about 70% water. A recent typhoon named Haiyan was the most powerful typhoon ever to hit land. Survivors said the wind, at over 200 mph, screamed like a woman. But none of it is masculine or feminine. When you drink a glass of water, it is not a feminine or a masculine thing. Water is genderless, yet it symbolizes the feminine aspect.
Intelligence and sensitivity is contained within your soul. Your taste, your preference for one thing or another is contained in your soul. Your feelings about whether something is right or wrong, are also in your soul. These are very subtle things are called conscience. Consciousness is genderless.
Meaning and Aesthetics
These ideas take us into a very different kind of thought process from being caught up in the day to day material world. As soon as you start going into these deep questions: “who am I?” and “what am I?” you go beyond the everyday world. Keeping yourself exclusively to the everyday world, gives you insufficient meaning to satisfy you. Then you look for satisfaction through your senses organs. You want to eat because of the taste. You want to wear a certain dress because is beautiful. You want to buy a certain type of house because of its qualities, not just utilitarian but aesthetic.
The aesthetic is somewhere in between the material and the spiritual. Music also will take you towards the material side or the other more spiritual side. The other arts have this capacity. These are ways of transcending the limitations of day to day reality. When you don’t have access to what is beyond day to day reality your life loses meaning.
If all you do is eat, sleep, reproduce, what is that? It doesn’t have meaning. What is the most meaningful thing in your existence? You would probably say something like love. What is love? Can you go to the shop and buy two kilos of love? People try to buy love but you can’t. How do you get love? Everybody wants love.
You have to give it. When you give from your heart, it makes you feel very good. That means you are giving love from your heart. You are giving a form of spiritual energy from your heart. This is why some say, the soul is your heart. But it is not the kind of heart that pumps your blood. It is the core of your being.
Consciousness of Being a Soul is the Quantum Leap
The dominant reality is the soul and the secondary reality is material. When your spiritual aspect is dominant then you bring God into the picture. Bringing the energy and the intelligence of God into the picture gives meaning. Then the material is subject to the spirit. When you are into materialism, the spirit is subject to the body and then the spirit gets damaged.
A big problem in the world today is damaged souls. If you take off your mask and find the damaged soul beneath, you will feel pain and horror. But if you take care of your soul and then take off your mask, you will have a beautiful warm glow. Then you feel that you are something like light, a child of God, eternal, happy, free.
The Mind Space
Where are your dreams? In your mind. Where is your mind? Have you ever seen a mind? Everybody has a mind? All of you have said that you have a soul… Have you seen a soul? You know you are one. Do dead people have souls? Actually the soul gives life to the body. It is the animating force of the material body. Your body is made of the elements of air, earth, fire, water and ether, in exactly the same proportions as the Earth itself. When you die, the priest intones: “earth to earth, ashes to ashes, etc.”
Meaning and Poets
The self that thinks and feels is more subtle than your body. We assign meaning in our mind to whatever we perceive through our sense perceptions. If there are no poets, no artists and no musicians, then there is no access to meaning. That meaning gives a greater dimension to our existence. We have to think about our existence, about our life: What is our life? Our culture is predominately materialistic. Materialism gives rise to two problems. The first problem: materialism destroys the Earth. The second problem: the prevailing moral attitudes of most societies create hypocrisy. These two problems are difficult to resolve. This is one of the reasons why we need a quantum leap.
The Space of Silence
The physical world is of time and space, beyond it there is the mental space, and beyond that there is a third space which is of silence. The quantum leap we need to make is to go into that silence space. Actions of substance, powerful actions originate in silence. So it is very important for us to be able to access that dimension of silence. There are physical activities, mental activities, and then there is silence. Do you know how to remain in silence for one minute? I mean not just physical silence but mental silence?
When you find yourself alone in silence, things start happening in your mind. There is a global epidemic of worry. You worry about money, about your relatives, about your health. “What’s going to happen? Why did that happen? This is not right, that is not right.”
A lot of mental energy goes in thinking thousands of thoughts. Every word and action is preceded by a thought or flow of thought. Many are repetitive. Some suffer from obsessive compulsive thinking. Many thoughts are not followed by words or actions. Sometimes in your mind you say: “shall I do it? No, yes, maybe?” and you don’t do anything! “Should I do this or should I do that? This is right but that is also right, which one shall I do? What would people think? How do I know if it is right or not?” In that way we expend a lot of time. All this goes on in the mental space. The soul wastes a lot of energy doing both physical and mental actions that are fruitless.
Three Aspects of Time
One is eternal time. The second is temporary time, chronological time. Then there is another time which is: how everything changes? Things change, so we need to know in which direction they change. Are things getting better or worse? You tell me.
Ok we better have an election. Who think things are going better?
Ok that’s very good. Now who think that they are going worse?
OK. That’s about the same amount…
Now there is another kind of time and space. The progression of the soul through time involves expenditure of energy. The energy of the soul gets consumed through actions in space and time. You are continuously getting weaker as time goes by.
Usually when you get tired you go to sleep. Where do you go when you go to sleep? You go in bed, you lay down and then go to sleep. Where do you go? Into a space of silence. Into the subconscious. Anyway, you separate from your body. Yes? You are not dead! Some cultures call sleep: the little death. You leave your body and you come back again. That is you wake up. Some time you are half asleep half awake. This is a nice space to be in.
When your soul passes through time it reaches a point where it cannot get any weaker. There is a point in the soul where you have maximum energy and another point where you have minimum energy. You go around the cycle of time; there is something called beginning of time and something call end of time.
At the present we have reached a very dangerous time. In fact, if you look around the world, there are several countries at war either internally or with each other. We could have global total economic collapse at any time. Every few days there is some big earthquake, some deadly hurricane. There are so many whales who don’t want to swim in the ocean anymore. Yes! They don’t like the ocean anymore. They jump on boats or commit suicide. This is not normal. Something is going on. But we don’t know what.
The eternal soul has to develop a special flexibility, so that you can collapse all of time into your mind in one circle; and all of space in one circle. You can make a little drawing like that and say: “that’s time and the other one, that’s space.” You position yourself outside time and space.
Being a soul, whether or not you are not in a body, you are still there. People have a survival instinct but you continue to exist as an individual whether you are dead or alive, in a body or not. If you are not here on the Earth in a body, then you could be in the mind space or in the silence space.
The Forces of Positivity and Negativity
There is a leap we need to make. Time moves from a beginning towards the end. You begin with a lot of energy and end up with almost no energy. Your personal energy is depleted and Earth’s energy is depleted. Then we have to deal with the force of negativity. Equally powerful to the force of negativity is the force of positivity. That is more subtle.
At the Confluence or Diamond Age between two time cycles, the two forces meet each other. During that time you need special mental flexibility to be equally comfortable in the silence space, the mental space and the physical space; so that you can move easily between these two times. The two time cycles overlap. You have an opportunity to jump from one time cycle to the other one; one time cycle is plunging into an extremely destructive abyss while at the same time another time force is raising the quality of everything.
The force of negativity is pulling one time cycle down causing everything we know to collapse. Either you can collapse with it or you transfer to the other force which is rising. What do you prefer?
We have to practice to let go of the body. For that you need to understand the three aspects of your being. One aspect is your physical body. Another body looks like this one but is made of light, like a shadow of white subtle light. We call that the subtle body. You also can separate from that and become only the soul in the form of a point of light. You need to remember these tree things.
While the energy of materialism is bringing the collapse of everything, your body goes with it. Your body is part of the Earth but it’s not you. It is your equipment. You need equipment but you are not equipment.
Your body of light goes with your mind. Your mind is a vehicle. You can go anywhere with that vehicle. You can actually separate, physically go one way and mentally go another way. Like a rocket dropping its stages.
These two are superimposed upon each other. The old time cycle going down with the new time cycle going up and there is a bridge between the two. You need to be able to stand on this bridge. Just to walk across.
The Bridge over Troubled Waters
This bridge is an attitude or a position that you adopt vis-à-vis what you perceive. When you perceive physically that things are going badly, just because it looks like it is going badly, it doesn’t mean that it is going badly. Something else is going on as well. The force of good is also operating. The positive force makes you into the maximum, best, powerful, spiritual, value-based combination possible. The soul has to jump from its weakest point to its most powerful point. The bridge allows you to make that leap.
On this bridge you have direct access to the source of power and wisdom. Your body is made of air, earth, water, fire, ether; but you, the soul, are made of purity, peace, power, love and bliss. However, to get on that bridge, you have to dis-identify from and let go of your body, and identify with the soul.
Your body connects you to people, places and objects. When you leave your body, you also leave the people and places you are physically connected to, and your physical possessions. But to become detached from them, you need to see your people as beings of light who also have bodies, but they themselves are not bodies. You can let go of your attachment to their bodies because they, the souls, are just as eternal as you.
In exchange for your possessions and places, you will get better ones in the future. When a car get very old, you get rid of it and get a new one. It is normal to let go of old things and acquire new ones. You regenerate yourself by connecting with the source. You do that in your mind, in the mental space. However, your mind is polluted because you have worries, doubts, obsessive compulsive thinking, etc. All that prevents you from crossing that bridge.
Let it Be
The real work is to practice going into the silence zone. You do that by allowing everything to be what it is without qualifying it as good or bad, you like it or don’t like it, etc.
In eternal time you are absolutely still and in a perfectly pure, peaceful, powerful, loving, blissful condition. Practice going there and being there, even though your mind will disturb you and pull you away. Keep on persisting, and you will acquire that detached and peaceful stability.
The Holographic Movie
Another device you can use is the cycle of changes. All changes go slowly from absolutely perfect to absolutely imperfect and then they start again. It is an identical repetition.
It is important to reduce the power of sense impressions to control you. Consider this world as a three dimensional holographic movie. When you see a movie, you have a remote device that enables you to stop it anytime you want; you always know this is only a film. Most movies make you laugh, cry and increase your heart rate, only by sounds and images. You always know that is not real. Even though you tell yourself: I will watch the movie, I will not cry. You cry. The power of the images and music is often greater than your power to control your feelings.
It is important to look at this earthly reality as if it were a three dimensional holographic movie. This practice reduces the power of sense impressions to control you. When you consider it to be a cycle of changes, you know that everything goes through this cycle eternally anyway. Intellectually at least, gradually you get ready to let it go totally. In your mind, you can fill your soul with all that lost energy and get ready to go to the next cycle.
You need power but you don’t have power and you have to get it from the Almighty. The Almighty is not just sitting there being almighty for no reason. There is a purpose. This is your source. You have to fill from that source. You have to drink all of it. Nothing will happen to it. Don’t worry.
But it is an extraordinary phenomenon. This source can be called God or the Higher power or the Supreme being. You can connect only with your mind, not with your body, because that One resides in the silent zone. You have to go there with your mind. The mind has to be very still in order for you to be able to jump, to drop the consciousness of the body, and establish yourself as a soul in your perfect form. Then connect and draw light from that Supreme Source into yourself. This is what is done on the bridge of the confluence between two cycles.
You have to give up worries and doubts. Definitely give up obsessive compulsive thinking. Practice. Once you make even a slight contact, you get power. When you have power you start to get more power. It is like money: you need money to make money, but you have to get some money from somewhere. Make special effort to connect to get at least a little bit. Then you start to pull power and you can take as much as you wish, because it is an unlimited source. You just have to be as greedy as you can.
But it is a leap. Move away from everyday consciousness and bring yourself into eternal consciousness, by identifying with the soul. That means be very sure that you cannot die. With or without your body you cannot die. That is the key.
Some people doubt in themselves. “Maybe the source will not open up for me! Maybe I am not worthy!” This is a doubt. It is very important to make very sure for yourself: “I am worthy.” Whatever is on your conscience you have to let it go.
The quantum leap is to live simultaneously in two qualitatively different ages. This really works and it is available to us at the present time. This why you have to make your mind very pure. This is the underground work of a person who stands on the bridge of the confluence age.
Then you become an agent for change. This kind of change cannot be accomplished politically. It is done spiritually but political, economic, environmental consequences are to be expected. The work is to keep the mind in that mental space beyond, and to keep connected with the divine intelligence who is the cause of this qualitative change. This leap of consciousness is to keep oneself aware. You continue in everyday visible reality and yet align yourself mentally with that other dimension. It is a continuing process.
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The Power of Concentration
Lecture presented at the Department of Statistics, UN Food and Agriculture Organization, Rome, 17 July 2013
There are many forms of concentration. Concentration is one of four steps of meditation. The aim of meditation is to keep the mind focussed on one selected thought or concept and then follow associated thoughts that take you to the destination of that thought, which is a deep understanding of the significance of that concept. The first step is ‘initiation’, a decision to think about a particular subject. The second step is ‘mediation’ – gathering together in your mind the associated ideas and relevant thoughts. You follow progressively deeper thoughts on that topic, which leads you to mental focus and you are independent of distractions. This completely focussed state of mind is ‘concentration’. Concentration is achieved when the right thoughts emerge at high speed as if you are driving on a highway at high speed towards your destination. Arriving at your destination is the fourth step: ‘realisation’. At that point you have understood, your mind becomes totally quiet and your soul experiences fulfilment.
The system of Raj Yoga addresses different aspects of consciousness. Both concentration and conscience are associated with the ‘intellect’. Conscience includes your power of discernment, not only on a moral or ethical level, but also in determining true or false conceptually. The intellect is the instrument of consciousness that chooses the focus of concentration. Meditation can be described as the choice to ponder upon what is worth thinking about.
A Raja Yogi practices various mental exercises. For example observe the inner world of mind at the end of the day and assess the quality of thoughts that occurred by categorizing types of thoughts in a spectrum from negative, meaningless, boring, pure, powerful, to positive thoughts. Choose to dwell upon the pure, powerful and positive, while eschewing the meaningless and negative.
Many people experience difficulty in concentration due to preoccupation with extraneous matters. It might be problems in relationships with colleagues, friends or family members or any other issue that is preying on your mind. Such preoccupations pull your attention away from the matter in hand.
Depending on the fragility of your heart, the preoccupation has greater or lesser power to control you. We are not robots, we have feelings which are influenced by what we see and hear. In particular our relationships affect our feelings. Concentration prevents obsessive thinking about issues or people. That is considered a good achievement. Ordinarily, a person with less power of concentration is unable to stop the flow of extraneous thoughts.
A thought worth thinking about, might be ‘What is my value as a human being?’ Contemplating on that takes you deep inside. You might start collecting thoughts connected with your professional designation, reputation, salary, number of people or organisations where you have influence, and where you actually contribute something that adds value. Accordingly you will calculate your value.
But if any of those identifications cease to be a reality, this can be stressful. If I can no longer calculate my value in those terms, I am suddenly in a weak position which immediately affects my concentration levels. When meditating with the aim of developing powers of concentration around the subject ‘what is my value?’ we need to collect other kinds of thoughts that are focussed on greater subtleties. Consider instead: ‘what are my values?’ That means to look at oneself in terms of our ethics and morality. Where we are working, where we are living, our family, our society and so on. In any given day you will invariably experience challenges at this level and some ethical dilemmas to resolve. If you are emotionally involved, this clouds your mind and reduces the power of your concentration.
The power of concentration quietens and controls emotions. Consider the spectrum of emotions and identify the details of that spectrum in a number of different ways. Select emotions which take over your mind – i.e. negative emotions. Another selection might be ‘finer feelings’ which are positive, refined and calm, unlike the turbulence caused by negative emotions. Examples of negative emotions are: feelings of betrayal, of being excluded, of being treated unfairly, of injustice or self-doubt. There may be feelings of revenge prompted by a remembered incident. These negative emotions and can trigger negative or extraneous thoughts. Whenever a feeling triggers negative or extraneous thoughts it drains your mental energy which is then no longer available for your use. You are then reduced in your functionality and less able to consider relevant data. You cannot pay full attention in your conversations or towards your reading material, or the flow of creative energy is substantially reduced if you have to create a document or a presentation. Concentration power protects your from loss or lowering of efficiency in your mental work.
Concentration power develops intellectual honesty, which is the internal ‘muscle’ that directs your thinking. The ‘intellect’ is also expressed as the conscience. Many people act, speak or think thoughts which go against their own conscience. Whenever you go against your conscience, this subtle inner instrument of conscience is reduced in its functionality, and this in turn reduces your power of concentration.
If you value your intellectual capacity, you will ensure that your conscience retains functionality because you need it for your thinking, processing of concepts and decision-making. Whenever your activities go against your conscience there is internal conflict. In response, some people create a division within their consciousness, known in the field of psychology as ‘compartmentalisation’. It is a way to cut your consciousness into sections, so that this part of me deals with work, this part of me deals with family, this part of me deals with political aspects, etc. By compartmentalising the consciousness one is able to avoid having to reconcile irreconcilable areas where you are at odds with yourself. However, ultimately you have to face the fact that you have compromised your integrity. This is counterproductive for a person who wants to maintain a clear conscience.
Your thinking is influenced and affected by other people’s thinking. The mind is our ‘sixth sense’. The mind is a subtle mechanism that picks up thoughts that come from other people that take the form of atmospheres and vibrations. In the very early morning the ‘mind space’ is cleaner, clearer for doing your thinking. People who practice Raja Yoga seriously to their mental exercises between 4 and 5 am. This provides us with a form of mental energy for use throughout the day. It has a two-fold purpose, one is to develop the muscle of concentration, and the other is to absorb a form of spiritual energy that charges up your inner being. However, if it is missed there is a slight reduction of the feeling of inner power and clarity of thinking. Try to keep it regular because it really is an enhancement.
The first step of the exercise is to create a mental image of a point of light. From a geometrical point of view, a point is without size. Kandinsky has described its importance in his book Point, Line and Plane. That image is the most concentrated of all possible concentrations. Hold the image of a point of light steady in your mind. In essence the consciousness of a human being is a concentration into a single point of light. Hold the thought of the form of the inner self as a point of light.
The nature of the mind is usually scattered. The mind accepts sensory information that comes into the brain principally through your seeing and your hearing. Seeing includes reading. Everything that comes into your mind through your sense perceptions will trigger associations. Some associations are extremely creative and some are very destructive. You need to be selective and choose to put a stop to the flow of irrelevant or destructive associations. This develops ‘will power. The moment you decide that you will not follow that particular line of association then your focus of attention stops going there. Be selective and aware of the thoughts generated by association and just say ‘no’ or ‘yes’, ‘go there’, ‘don’t go there’. Developing will power keeps the mind free from distractions. Distraction obstructs our clarity of thinking. If you are plagued by any personal issue which interferes with your performance at work, that is a distraction. Will power is real power.
If your power of concentration is up to the mark you will still any distraction and it ceases to occupy your mind. This mental power is generated through regularly practising the exercise of the first thought: ‘I am a point of light’: that means to say ‘I identify myself as the smallest representation of self’. All the other aspects of my life are performances and secondary. We are all actors and we perform roles in relationship with other people. This idea and practice of being a point influences all your performances. The people you interact with are other actors. You can exercise your right and your will to think about them or not, depending on what is relevant, appropriate, suitable. You decide ‘OK, today – this morning – for one hour I will think about ‘what is my value as a being?’ That decision implies that you practice to quieten any thought that arises in my mind that contradicts or is irrelevant. Then bring relevant thoughts onto the screen of your mind.
Once you start doing this you realise you are on a battlefield. You observe many thought forms that demand your attention. When you assert that they are irrelevant, and choose not to think about them, they assert an energy to draw your attention. This is why you have to practice. It’s a form of gym for the mind. So you say to yourself ‘OK self, now come on’ I choose to generate thoughts which are relevant to this topic, and if I don’t generate them, then the distractions will succeed in drawing my attention away, then I will have failed to maintain my concentration.
You need to select the topic, and the ability you want to develop, in advance. You decide what is worth thinking about. The purpose of concentration is to go deep into a concept. Initially you require a lot of mental energy to create an adequate collection of relevant thoughts that you can work with. In the initial stages of the exercise your mind gets distracted very easily. It takes power to initialise the process. You might have spent time earlier in the day or the previous day developing a collection of thoughts that you are really going to think about during your meditation time or your thinking time. When you reach the second step, the ‘meditation’, where you really are circulating exclusively those thoughts in your mind, to penetrate, and make the effort to grasp the deeper meaning of what those thoughts are – this actually takes you deeper and your thinking becomes more subtle.
By practicing you realise that most of the time we live on a superficial and gross level of consciousness, through which you miss the finer points of meaning and the subtleties that are truly relevant. The mental effort of going deep refines the intellect causing it to become progressively less gross, you reach an increasingly refined state, and ultimately you come to a point of perfect inner stillness. In that inner stillness you can open up your mind to savour the deeper meaning of what you have been contemplating. In that state you gain revealing and empowering insights. You attain a state of clarity and sometimes experience the happiness of understanding something you didn’t understand before. This is a most enriching experiencing that broadens your wisdom about the deeper aspects of human existence. You arrive at work restored and refreshed having done that exercise. You begin your day by clearing the desk of your mind, as well as your physical desk, and say to yourself: ‘Ok, from now until whenever, I am focussing my attention on this’. You are able to do whatever you have to do because your muscle of concentration is functioning well.
There is always a variety of distractions: phone calls, unexpected e-mails, drama, some emergency etc. Through your power of concentration you rapidly calculate the correct response and speedily resolve the demand and then you drop it. If concentration is reduced there is a tendency to hold on and rethink a number of times. ‘Did I really give the good idea?’ ‘Maybe I should have done it another way.’ ‘Maybe it will disturb this person’, etc. When you re-think some past event, your mind is no longer available for what you have to do next, but it is dragged back into what you just did. Concentration enables you to let go, to drop what is already done, what is already past. Concentration also means to be right here, right now, in the present.
The Philosophy of Karma stated in its most essential form is “As you sow, so shall you reap.” “Every action causes an equal and opposite reaction.”
Each action is a seed planted, which comes to fruition according to time. Every second we perform an action. We are encouraged to be very aware of and monitor the quality of each thought, word and act as they emerge through us.
Thoughts, words and deeds fall on a wide spectrum between pure and impure. The consequences occur in the immediate short term, mid-term and long term. They affect your body, mind, wealth, relationships, circumstances, opportunities etc. All actions are performed in the context of the consequences of previous actions, which are often unknown to us due to being performed in the distant past of another life time. Sometimes we do not see the connections, and do not recognize that we are experiencing the consequences of a wrong action, or set of actions, we did, or are continuing to do, in this life. In the western tradition we tend to think of sin as an individual action. In BK knowledge we look at a tendency or series of similar actions as the sin, bearing in mind that it is very rare to do something only once, hence the connection between karma and sanskaras.
The knowledge of Raja Yoga as described by Brahma Kumaris IVV and studied by BKs through the murlis includes much information about karma. Essentially: a pure action brings about a beneficial result. An impure action brings about a result of loss. Whether we are soul conscious or body conscious makes all the difference to the quality of our actions. The aim of the study and practice is to become Karmateet, which means free from the effects of karma. Baba’s definition of perfect is free from or beyond the effects of karma.
It is very easy to over-simplify and arrive at erroneous conclusions. The path to the Karmateet stage is fraught with complications, self-deceptions, illusions, delusions and other errors. At the same time it is only by being willing to face all these that the student becomes experienced and gains clarity.
Knowledge of Karma must also be set in the context of the other concepts such as
- The predestined drama of 5000 years duration
- The predestined part or role of each soul
- Free will
- Tests and challenges
- Maya or Ravan
- The eight powers of yoga
Considering all these aspects shows the law of Karma to be a very complex machinery that can be interpreted in many different ways. Shiva Baba has revealed much new information about these concepts and teaches us to become experienced and conversant, with the aim of becoming wise. The teachings are presented initially as a broad framework. The subtleties and intricacies are acquired slowly over time, as an individual BK progresses in his or her journey of the spiritual practice of Raja Yoga.
Every soul exists within a perpetually turning cycle of cause and effect. Every soul acts according to their sanskaras which are produced by their karma, which in turn reinforces their sanskaras. Very slowly over the course of the cycle of time, the quality of consciousness declines, tying the bondages of karma ever more tightly in an escalating knot of negative give and take, which binds the individuals concerned in intensifying forms of suffering and sorrow.
Enter: the concept of charity. Charity is pure action performed independently of conventional or justifiable reactions, and has the power to loosen the karmic knot. The power to perform charitable actions is generated through meditation and study of spiritual knowledge. Poonya ki poonjee refers to a special level of pure karma that is a true sacrifice.
The knowledge and practice of Raja Yoga is a teaching given by God (Shiva Baba) who is outside the karmic cycle and enables a soul to escape from the bondages of karma. A BK is encouraged to follow Srimat in order to be successful. Going against srimat obstructs success. Srimat is the directions of God.
This is why God is called the Supreme Teacher, the Purifier, the Merciful one, the Guide, the Knowledgeful One.
In the context of an organization, the laws of karma are only incidentally taken into consideration, and only as they figure within man made legislation as it applies to human resources etc. In the context of a family the laws of karma are taken into consideration only in so far as they correspond with the religious tenets and social conventions that govern families. Our inquiry focuses here particularly on the western world. In India the idea of karma is much more prominent in the family context as it is an integral part of the Hindu tradition which includes the concept of reincarnation.
In Brahma Kumaris, although we say this is an organization, in fact it is only to a certain extent. It is rather a spiritual family. In this context the laws of karma are investigated and interpreted in as fine detail as possible.
One problem is that the laws of karma are harsh, merciless and cold. Consequently people generally have a strong antipathetic reaction. They don’t like the concept and consequently disagree with it. By disagreeing with it, they discount it, deny it, and avoid it, often choosing instead to blame others, God, circumstances, injustice etc. However such reactions do not change the inexorable course of the laws of karma, nor their inevitable consequences.
God, Shiva Baba through Brahma Baba, provides us with detailed descriptions of the laws and accounts of karma, and each BK individually interprets this according to their capacity and understanding. Any limitations in their capacity and understanding in their relationship with these laws cause them to take sorrow or become bitter towards them or the BK family/organization.
The more an individual BK is spiritually powerful, pure, clear, and with understanding of the Gyan, the greater their ability to manage, accept and effectively interpret the laws of karma and calculate the accounts of karma.
This implies that a BK must grapple with the concept, the laws and the accounts of Karma. This is difficult because it is very subtle. It requires that a BK becomes adept in the use of the 8 powers of Yoga, particularly the power to face. There is no short cut. This process takes time and a lot of patience. We don’t always have that, which is frustrating.
In the spiritual family set up of the Yagya, there is God, Shiva Baba, the Supreme Father, Teacher and Sat Guru. Then there are Brahma and Saraswati, the spiritual parents on the physical level who interpret and demonstrate the guidance provided by Shiva Baba. In his turn Shiva Baba guarantees that their interpretation is correct.
Then there are the elders, the Dadis. They are clearly identified and their importance is that they are original founding members of the family and lived with Shiva Baba, Brahma Baba and Mama. They experienced the knowledge being given and interpreted from the outset and are therefore in the best position to carry it forward. They are the best references for those who came later on.
Then there are the Didis and senior brothers, the generation of sisters and brothers who entered in the 1950s and 60s, who experienced Brahma Baba, Mama and the Dadis, who were given fullest apprenticeship in the practice of Raja Yoga and many of whom were assigned to serve in western countries and provide guidance to western people who wanted to learn Raja Yoga and become part of the BK spiritual family.
Because the Yagya deals with money and property and other physical aspects, there was a need to establish an organization so that donations could be received, and the BK family could have an interface with local governments. This applies in India also. Consequently we have an organizational structure as well as a family structure, and this is a continuum.
Things that make a difference to your karma
- Influence of company
- Impact of using the Third Eye
- The consciousness of the Confluence Age
- Tiag, tapasya, seva – (renunciation, intense meditation, service)
- Facing and settling karmic accounts along the way
- Murjeeva janam – Death while alive – change of consciousness and sense of identity but keep the same body)
- Icchha mataram avidhya – Ignorant of all trace of desire
- Influence of Maya, Ravan, the force of evil
When a BK becomes a BK, an unwritten contract gets established once that BK begins working with the question “Who am I?”
- As a Child of The Father, an inheritance is to be claimed. This implies fidelity and loyalty in the relationship.
- As a student of The Teacher, a status is to be claimed. This implies honesty in the relationship.
- As a follower of the Sat Guru, liberation is to be claimed. This implies obedience in the relationship.
The five forms of the swadarshanchakra dhari mantra – Hum So, So Hum: Brahmin, Devta, Khshatriya, Vaishya, Shudra describes the reality of the decline of the soul during our passage through time. Psychologically it is only possible for a person to face and come to terms with this reality at the time of the confluence age, in our last of the 84 births, the time when we have reached the lowest point. This is also the point at which the pendulum swings in the other direction. The point when the soul goes from the lowest to the highest stage – the confluence of the time cycles.
The Five Forms of our practice: Point of light, Deity, Worship Worthy Image, Brahmin, Angel enable us to experience the points of progression around the cycle as positive moments. This mental or spiritual practice enables us to transcend the horror of our descent and decline. It mitigates the psychological trauma of facing the reality that rather than moving in an evolutionary progression, we only decline from the beginning to the end. Psychologically the soul cries out “what is the point?” and crumbles in disbelief and despair.
But, if we see the five stages as positive and all related to our perfect forms, or the different facets of our eternal perfection, then psychologically the soul can accept such a reality about itself. The soul affirms during the confluence age that: I am a Point of light, a Deity, a Worship Worthy Image, a Brahmin, an Angel. This also corresponds to my passage round the cycle. I spin the cycle and this is my eternal identity.
The concept of a hierarchy of souls is also psychologically abhorrent to people raised in the culture of equality. It represents a demand to turn ones back on one of the most elevated values in the culture, and psychologically this is unacceptable. There is a clash of values that brings on an ethical dilemma that the western person finds impossible to resolve. In some cases a person responds to this dilemma by “suspension of disbelief”. This is like blind faith. A person rejects their previous value system wholesale and takes on a new one which is unfamiliar. But, they recognize God, therefore they are ready to turn their backs on their ideas and philosophical positions up to that moment of recognition of God. However, this forces them to take on a “fanatical” position. Some people have a moment of instant recognition which is so powerful that they are compelled to act upon that experience in a total way. Others take their time and slowly arrive at recognition. They act upon a slowly awakening recognition step by step integrating changes in their life-styles and belief systems gradually over some years. The first category tends to get immediately and strongly implicated in the BK center, service etc. and make huge and rapid changes in their ways of life. The latter category makes changes very slowly and may never get intensively implicated in the centre activities or become a “dedicated BK”.
Rather than becoming a “fanatical BK” a more healthy approach for those who experience instant and powerful recognition, might be to deal with the dilemma in steps. It is important to recognize that while the moment of recognition is intense, exhilarating, possibly an overwhelming “calling”, nevertheless the soul is not actually powerful at that time. There may even be visions which are extremely compelling. The person may feel much empowered by the experience, but that is not the same as the accumulation of spiritual potency that arises over a long period of time of meditation and spiritual study.
(I was fortunate to have a background in philosophy and intensive study in spirituality from many traditions and religions. My university training in philosophy and the humanities, literature, history etc. provided me with the intellectual tools to complement my instant recognition and visionary experiences with a hard-nosed analysis of what was being presented to me. I could also engage in an in-depth investigation of the BK organization and family, visiting many centres, and checking out everything in every way I could think of. My process was in this way two pronged. One side was electric, powerful, instant recognition and surrender, and the other side an intellectual analysis, close observation of the people concerned and non-emotional evaluation of what this is.
I entered into an unspoken contract with Dadi Janki that on my side I would do whatever she would tell me, and on her side she would move me forward in the traditional BK way of the original founding father and mother. Although this was very arduous at times, I was always very aware that this is the best way to gain the greatest resilience, insight and capacity, and I therefore accepted it at each step. Anyone who has studied the lives of those who undertook a serious spiritual practice knows that it is arduous, lonely, mysterious and fraught with tests. My special interest in classical mythology of India, Greece, Rome, Egypt and China confirmed this also. I often thought of the saying, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” Dadi Janki also provided me with powerful thoughts to help me across difficult terrain. For example, “It’s not good, it’s not bad; it just is.” It’s happening, but it’s not happening to me.”)
The knowledge of Drama is very subtle and deep. It implies that you have to let go of each scene, each event, each act of each soul, moment by moment and not keep any of it in mind, on the “Chitta” (memory track) or in the heart, otherwise the soul gets contaminated and cannot proceed unhampered. The yoga is broken and the soul founders.
Madhuban (Pandav Bhawan, Gyan Sarovar and Shantivan) but specially Pandav Bhawan, the original ashram created by Brahma Baba, Mama and the Dadis is the place of pilgrimage. We BKs return to Madhuban annually or biennially or more often. This place contains the spiritual power that we recharge ourselves with regularly. Of course each one must do their own meditation daily, with special emphasis on Armit Vela to keep up the power levels that enable the soul to combat the opposition from Maya, Ravan, the force of Evil or whatever you like to call this negative energy. We meet Bapdada in Madhuban (now in the Diamond Hall of Shantivan). Bapdada fills us with incognito power. We receive power and sustenance from the family, from the Dadis and other seniors, and from the place itself.
Once a BK begins the practice of Raja Yoga, it is understood that she or he has thrown down the gauntlet and challenged the force of negativity. Its response is relentless and continuous. This means, once we start the process, it behooves us to maintain our levels of spiritual power and we must be careful to keep a balance of Yoga and Knowledge, and Yoga and Service. If we lose the balance and the yoga becomes weak, then we are vulnerable to Maya and very easily we make small mistakes (negative karmas) which add up and can be so powerful that it causes us to fail, to leave the practice and return to the “worldly life”. In such a case we tend not to blame our karma of negligence of our practice, but rather tend to blame others, the BK organization or family etc. This is a failure to accept and to see that we are responsible for what has happened.
However, our Dadis help us at every step and do whatever they can to re-empower us with drishti, donation of yoga, powerful classes, personal conversations, and many forms of sustenance that bring us back on track. This is the love of the family elders.
The Yagya is an intricate machine created by Shiva Baba through the medium of Brahma as an instrument whereby a BK can create a positive account of karma with God. Ordinarily a soul has karma with other souls and with matter. Through the means of religion a soul creates in indirect karmic account with God. The Yagya is a means whereby a BK can create a direct karmic account with God. This intensifies the possibility of powerful remembrance, tapasya and service. It creates such a powerful accumulation of positive karma for the soul that there is extreme benefit. Those who understand this clinch a “deal” with Baba. Shiva Baba describes this as “you give one, and God gives you hundreds of thousands in return”. A very important part of the study and practice of Raja Yoga is to figure out this deal and take best advantage. Not everyone will do this. Some will get it wrong and get into a negative or less positive account with God. As a result they become distanced from God and they experience lack of Yoga.
God’s srimat is:
- As much as possible remain in My Remembrance
- As much as possible do everything in my remembrance
- As much as possible keep Me with you
- Refer to me
- Take my help
- Follow the example of Brahma Baba
- Think about what he would have done and do likewise
In this way a BK intensifies their karmic connection with Shiva Baba. He says do not defame me, do not do any karma which would spoil the reputation of the Father. If we err in this way, we would go into a negative account and this would put us into loss. Then we would experience some mental or physical distance from the Yagya. To come close again we have to do very strong practice of meditation. Sometimes the problem is that due to ego or attachment we blame the Yagya for our own karmic accounts with someone, with the body or some other thing. Then we have to overcome that ego, attachment or other negative emotion that is prompting our negative thinking and acting, and which is pulling us away from positive relationship with the Yagya.
In the final analysis, we are responsible for what happens to us. Even so, it is essential to accumulate the power to face and accept it. As much as we accumulate inner power so much are we able to accept the laws of karma, face the consequences of our own karma and move forward.
The Festival of the promise of purity, celebrated in India at the August full moon: Raksha Bandhan literally means the bond of protection. In ancient times before going to battle, the warriors would accept a Rakkhi, (a string tied around the right wrist) from a virgin woman, in the belief that her purity would protect them from harm on the battlefield.
It is also celebrated by the Brahmins, who annually replace their jannoy, (a string tied like a sash over the right shoulder). The jannoy symbolizes the spiritual principles that delimit their daily lives, such as vegetarian diet, lifestyle of purity, abstinence from recreational drugs, and a commitment to regular spiritual practice of meditation and spiritual study. Brahmins would also go to tie Rakkhis on the people who would give them money in return believing the Rakkhi would protect them from harm in their lives.
For students of the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University, Raksha Bandhan is one of the most important days. Special time is set aside to re-affirm the commitment to a chaste lifestyle of purity, vegetarian diet, abstinence from various negative habits, and to re-commit to a practice of intense meditation and study of spiritual knowledge. The BK practice of Raja Yoga is about personal development and transformation from ordinary to excellent. Ultimately life is a journey of self-discovery and character building.
As we move forward step by step on this life long journey we cover different terrains while the years go by, and we grow from youth to adulthood, to maturity to our senior years and eventually our twilight time.
This year we are giving special attention to deep personal inventory. This means to look inside searchingly at every corner of the soul to find any remaining character weaknesses, to shine the light of wisdom and spiritual light into those dark shadows and become clean inside and out.
There is a belief that if there is an “Unch” it will produce a “Vunch”. Unch is a trace, and vunch is a proliferation.
A significant aim of spiritual practice is to become free: physically, emotionally, spiritually, socially, financially, and so many other areas. Our personal freedom is limited by our personal weaknesses, which we also call our bondages and limitations. Therefore to search out tiny traces of hidden weaknesses is important, so that we don’t have to deal with any unexpected proliferation, when we face sudden challenges.
We all have traces of false ego. This blinds us to our small weaknesses, or gives us a false sense of security when we minimize them. We get caught up in the outer world of sense perceptions, the sights and sounds of modern life, and lose sight of the eternal inner light that burns within. Keeping attention on that light is the real work, and our true success. The inner light is connected with the third eye of wisdom. That enlightenment reveals the traces, and the accumulated power of yoga or meditation is the power that destroys the germs.
This year we are particularly looking to burn away those last traces and fling away the Raak, the ashes, so that there is not the slightest chance of negative characteristics resuscitating themselves. There is a term: Antim Sakskara, which means the last rites. Traditionally, after the body is burned, the ashes are ceremonially consigned to the purifying Ganges river, thus the soul is completely freed from any connection with the past that could pull the soul back to its old ways, and the liberated and enlightened soul is the free to move on its journey of evolution towards ultimate liberation. The liberated soul can then re-enter the circle of life as a perfected being of divinity and godliness. Let us use this auspicious time of the August full moon to perform this pure karma for the self. This year it falls on August 13, 2011.
Vaeragya, the Power of Withdrawal, Solitude and Manmohj
(Intense Mental Pleasure and Freedom)
Vaeragya is the state of such detachment and disinterest that the power of attraction of material delights finds no resonance with you. This state of consciousness is a precondition for the development of the power of withdrawal. Solitude for long periods of time, lets you remain internalized, alone, beyond the emotions of loneliness, feelings of rejection, abandonment, being passed over, failure etc. Then you can cross over into the zone of Manmohj. Manmohj is the mind in intense pleasure and freedom, aware of the beauty and wonder of the drama of the world as it is. Seeing a dimension of reality where everything is as it should be. You are independent of good and evil and can neither feel guilty about anything you did, nor blame anyone else for anything they ever did. You realize that the best thing of all is to be you. You are in the consciousness of I, the soul. Darkness, whether emotional, spiritual or philosophical, contains light; and the shadow casts no influence either on you or on your circumstances.
Silence of the mind is then possible. There is no strain or resistance. Your powers of perception indicate no problem. The landscape of your mind contains logical connections between and among events and perceptions, and their beauty pleases you.
As you become completely honest and real, the self becomes strong. Your practice to be bodiless while alive brings you into the same consciousness as God. God is bodiless and He sees all the lives of each one. He knows the threads of the tapestry of human interaction and is pleased with the design. You can also see with the eyes of bodilessness. That is the same as recovering your original stage, and regaining your original sanskaras of beauty and harmony. This is your desire. This desire is the desire for sovereignty, and this desire is raj yoga. Mental communion with God brings sovereignty. However you must claim it. You thus activate your connection with God and God activates your soul. This activation is purification. To be impure is to forget. You don’t know your ancient past, but it can be known; and it is known to God.
It is believed that only a Golden vessel can hold the milk of a lioness. Remembrance turns you to gold, that is, it purifies your intellect, the vessel that can hold the lioness milk of God’s knowledge. God knows each one of your births. This is a full 360 degree perspective on your identity. Understanding this compels you to make your claim. It is crucial to make your foundation strong. You have to develop relentless resilience to storms of pain and sorrow that will surely come. If you do claim mental sovereignty you will not experience sorrow.
Practice to have such remembrance that you have no other awareness than the awareness of God. Create time for this. Catch your real sanskaras. Catching power is cultivated through silence. Become what you were. Experience a time frame of 5000 years to be the same as remembering yesterday. This keeps your soul in perpetual happiness, regardless of death.
After the Murli, Dadi Janki said:
Reflecting further on the theme of the “Call of the Time” of last May at GRC: Mind and Matter as Two Interlocking Living Systems.
My Inner voice: – can I hear it so clearly that I am led to say and do amazing things. We should take full advantage of the wonder of our mind. Hear the inner voice in dead silence. At death the soul may leave the body but it keeps the sanskaras. Now become sanskara-less. Return to your original golden age sanskaras. After long tapasya you develop catching power. You are the same one who appeared in the previous time cycle. You must try to catch that vibration so that you can connect the two ends of time together and make the continuum.
Now God, the knower of everyone’s time and space has come to you, and you must evolve into what you have to become. This information gives strength to your heart, and the courage to do the necessary work of intellectual refinement. Rough thoughts graze the soul and most people’s mind is rough these days. Matter performs well automatically. The body’s autonomic nervous system and nature continuously perform wonders. By that account the mind should do likewise, so that you can even leave your body in happiness.
Silence comes after you have achieved happiness and power. If you do as God does, you will then have access to the energy of God. There is a deep connection between power and values. The eight powers and twelve values are extraordinary treasures. If you stay in mohj, that pleasure of the enlightened unencumbered mind, then you never experience confusion. You are free and have no desire or need for support, companions or facilities. In this stage you catch the energy and exist in Araam or Vishraam, rest and comfort. This is called the state of Nindra jit, the conqueror of sleep. In this state of consciousness your mind remains free. This gives your intellect the space to do its work.
In 1991, Dadi Janki achieved the blessing of prikrti jit, the conqueror of matter. She learned how to run her body well, despite its 95 years of age. God moves one who knows how to move themselves. This also involves avoidance of the sanskar of focusing on, thinking about and commenting on the sanskaras of others. Observing their role is a good thing. Condemning their actions is not.
If you claim to promote the feeling of belonging, it implies you consider each person as your brother or your sister. In that attitude, accept them as they are, keep discrete, and help them move forward. You may move yourself ahead, but not at someone’s expense, having condemned their actions. You need to become subtler, and listen to the small voice of your conscience.
Incorporeal God acts, and acts through instruments simultaneously. If you were truly working with God, then you would be visible as an angel. Only if you are bodiless can God work through you. Now you need to become angels without flesh and bones, then you will feel no pain. The experience of pain activates your ego, which is displayed when you engage in comparison, competition, complaints and criticism about others. In that mentality God cannot work through you. To be bodiless you need power, and you accumulate Yoga power from your practice and discipline of purity.