So today is the beginning of one of the most auspicious festivals of the Sanatana Dharma ( Hinduism),’Navratri.’ Apart, from the rituals and traditions will be aboded by at everyone’s place, I would encourage everyone to have a deeper experience during this Navratri.
Navratri is considered to be the most auspicious and powerful time in the universe. It is the time when positive vibrations are at its peak. It is the time when you should sit down for sometime and get in touch with the universal source. Do some meditations, listen to chantings, read or watch some knowledge videos ( even if it’s just a verse).
Ours is a generation which is very ambitious. We have big dreams and big plans. This makes it necessary for us to have the experiences that make us move forward to realising and executing these. This can happen only through meditation. Meditation gives you that peace and contentment which brings forth creativity and efficiency. Our Pujas use and honour all the five elements ( air, water, earth, fire and space.) This symbolises the aspect of harmony and respecting every creation of the universe in our traditions. Much beyond the rituals it’s about celebration. Celebrating the diversity in the creation which merges into the universal. Our eyes and our senses make us feel and experience the diversity, closing down our senses sit down, relax and meditate. This makes us experience the universal. It’s such a beautiful and serene experience that you would fail to express it in words.
Some of you might be away from home and might not be able to be a part of the celebration back home. There is no need for you to feel disheartening. You can just meditate and take a dive into the celebration, wherever you are. So this Navratri not only just do your Pujas, fasting and rituals but also meditate and get in touch with the universal source.
Some recommended Meditation and chants that you can do –
Guided Meditations by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar –
1. Breath of Relaxation
2. Sound to Silence
1. Devi Kavacham – Armour of the Goddess
2. Laxmi Ashtottara
Knowledge Videos –
1. Bhagwat Gita
2. Patanjal Yoga Sutras
3. Significance of Navratri
Happy Navratri to All.
Often we get disheartened at not getting what we desired for. The wise thing is to always ask for what is best for you from the Divine. You may always be asking for more money but there might be an unending dance of love and joy with a little less of money, waiting for you.
Life is much larger than our small cravings and aversion. There is an ocean for us to embrace, so why should we settle for a well or a pond. Have faith and belief that this life only the best is going to come to you.
Surrender is not a sign of weakness but a sign of strength.
You not only surrender what you have but also what you don’t. You have a desire to achieve something or possess something. You don’t have it but yet you want to have it.
Surrender is letting go of the feverishness of the desires and setting yourself free.
Grace, gratitude and faith helps you to surrender effortlessly. Next time when you are bothered don’t become weak and crib about it. Be strong and surrender your botheration to the divine ! 😊
It is true that good things take time to come. But if you start being good all the time, good things will come to others right away.
Its been almost a year (One year,two months & 11 days precisely!) since I embraced Yoga. The journey since then has been surreal. There is an ocean of opportunities that seem to be within my reach, ever blowing winds of joy touching me and an abundance of blessings that keep showering love on me.
The journey from the outside has turned inward and the love that used to be confined has become my very nature. It has become difficult to get angry, feel depressed or feel disheartened for all these feelings have transcended to become bliss, that which remains unshakable come what may! Time seems to be working in accordance with me, efficient and reliant. It has become easier to accept the people as they are and have a greater understanding about what they feel. Giving has become my very nature, be it a box of sweets or a moment of joy, the moment feels totally incomplete if there is no one to share it with.
There is so much of change and yet it becomes difficult to answer the question people often ask-
“What Change Has it Brought into Your life?”
There is so much to say and so much to show but everytime I answer this question I realise that it somehow always remains incomplete. For I am never able to explain the magnificent change it has brought into my life. For some it may seem to be a transformation, for some it may just seem to be a transition but to me it is transcendence. Oneness of this whole creation has now become a perceived reality, that which is absolute and truth. The love for the supreme has been discovered with an unmatched exuberance. It is difficult to explain in words completely, for words are not enough to do justice to it.
So the next time someone has this question, I would can only simply say –
“I can make you an offer that you can never refuse.”
And the offer is –
” You can give all your problems and sorrow to me and I promise to share all my love and all my joy with you.” 😊
For once calm down, relax and observe everything that is going on in your life. Even as an ocean gives rise to turbulent storms and waves, your life brings many adversities and challenges on your way. Sitting at a beach and observing the waves and the vastness of the ocean brings a sense of calmness and contentment to your being. So will sitting back and witnessing everything that is going on in your own life will.
Just like the waves rise and vanish, so will all the advertisities and challenges that comes in your way. Realising about the infinite of things will make you leave the grasp of the finite. Look at the vastness of this world and make yourself a part of it. Sit, relax, close your eyes and let yourself get mixed with the infinite ocean of existence.
You know sometimes I used to wonder that when I have come on the path of spirituality, daily meditations, yoga along with breathing exercises would bring so much peace and calmness to me. But strange as it seemed, the memories of the past events would sometimes still come back to haunt me. Add to that the experiences or moments that had made me feel at unease would be crossing my mind again and again, uninterrupted. Much difficult it was for me to gather the courage that would help me in erasing it from the consciousness for it is certainly not easy as one,two,three owning to the fact that on the path of spirituality your consciousness expands and does not gets diminished, certainly. Good or bad,present or past the memories may have been they are all alike, only the intensity of their impact and perception about their negative consequences changes.
To jump you must take a leap,likewise for the past impressions to be diminished they must transcend from your mind to your expanding consciousness which does not equate them with a prejudice but accepts it as it is. What one needs at this juncture is faith, faith in the divine, a divinity that binds us together and makes our being possible. Have the knowledge that things will be better for the sun sets only to rise again. Don’t be bothered by the memories of the past nor blame yourself for the things you did or others for what they did to you. It was all a part of the destiny which has rightly placed you where you are now. A sapling braves the roughest of weather only to blossom and become a tree with much to give to all. In the same way you must just go with the flow and let it all go. Your greatest weapon would be to serve without any intention or expectations but only with a commitment for the greater betterment of all. It brings peace and bliss for you are not asking anything in return, the act of a wise. An arrow to be released needs to be pulled back, in the same way for the sorrow to go it needs to be pulled to the consciousness so that it can be released from the cocoon of perpetuity. Just be an observers to the changing thoughts and experience the beauty of mind. The best way to battle the mind is not to battle at all but to be a witness to its play. Only then will one be able to let it all go.
I was on my way to an usual Thursday Satsang evening at our Metropolitan Art of Living Centre, where people from all over the city would come to attend the divine musical evening. There was a very unusual thing that I noticed upon reaching the centre. The lights were off and the sound of musical instruments seemed way to blur but the taking place of the Satsang was evident from the shrill lyrics of the bhajans that I could here. Upon entering it dawned on me that there were no musicians and it was just our singer, Suryom who had come to perform. This made me recall the thoughts I had an hour ago on my way here. I had reflected upon the thought of not to going to the Satsang while I was waiting for at the bus stand in Salt Lake, the reason was that it was already 7 pm and the Satsang would strictly start at 6:30 pm irrespective of the number of attendees. This thought was only expanded when I saw that there were no musical instruments (guitar, tabla), totally contrary to my expectations. But as sages say when you are on a spiritual path just have faith and what you get will be only oneness with the divine and that is what I experienced in the true sense. I had entered somewhat disheartened but when I left, I left with an enlightened Self. It felt like I had evolved, an evolution that brought gratefulness and awareness along with compassion to the whole existence. What I wanted to take was certainly not there but what I got was certainly beyond something which I could have ever asked for.
Disciplined as always in my spiritual practices I entered the room and sat down. A few greetings to my friends on the left and the right and then I sat down in the Yogic posture and made efforts to sink into the ambiance. Satsang is the sitting together in a group and being with truth in presence of a guru and the spiritual students. The singer sings a few lines and we repeat. The energy that resonates is quintessential. There were no musical instruments but there was the divine ambiance. The dim lights brought awareness and calmness while the company of the singing mates brought completeness and contentment. Throughout the Satsang I kept my eyes closed and tried to give my hundred per cent. Trying to sing each word with devotion and perseverance. When in between sometimes I would open my eyes to see the people around it would bring elevation in being by seeing them in such exuberance. Meditation, singing, learning and discovering the inner depths all were being experienced in a heightened level of consciousness. It made me disconnected from the outside world and for a moment it felt like there was no one around and I was One with the Voice. Cut to the end our teacher, Divyabandhu, who had taught this art of meditation to us, asked us to share today’s experience of the Satsang. All of us felt elevated and rejuvenated and when he asked why was it that today was so different that we felt this all of us presented our views but that could not summarise what he had been looking for. He explained that it was only because of our perseverance that we felt what we did today. It dint matter what the situation or expectations was, what mattered was our devotion to the present moment. Our perseverance turned it into a celebration what would have been sorrow otherwise.
The thing that facilitated the feeling of elevation was not the Satsang but what we did after that. Divyabandhu asked us to do something unique and somewhat absurd. He asked us to sit in a circle and introduce ourselves. Now this seemed unique because we had never done this before and absurd because most of us knew each other. But the conclusion from this session was heightening. All of us defined what we were doing and how we were planning to shape our future. This brought to the realization of each one of us that how well excelling were we all. One was the only Craniosacral Therapist (CST) in the state, other was a doctor whose patients felt that they were not patients but an extended family. Another was a marine engineer who was on his six month vacation but was doing everything but vacationing – running a school for children of the watchmen, teaching meditation and yoga to the people of the slums. Another was being adored by all. Gyaanachaya had been facilitating sessions across the schools of the city to fill the vacuum that children felt for having conversations that they could not have with their teacher or their parents. It was during this that Divyabandhu brought a great point to the audience in appreciation of her hard work – “It is not the organization that defines you but you that defines the organization.” This made me realize the ultimate truth – how I behave and interact does not only define me but also the organization that I come from. There was another one,Udayajharna, the one who had brought most of us into this path,including me. Whatever we might do, however high we may excel, there would never be a moment when we wouldn’t feel indebted to this man – for identifying and harboring the skills that we have today. It was a teenage child, a class 9 student who stole the show. Her simplicity and innocence made us marvel at how we were. She simply without any effort or with an intention to leave an impression presented to us what she loved – ‘Studying and Singing.’ She was the one who spoke the least but made the most impact. It was this that made us marvel at how manipulative we had become as we had grown. What to say or with how much elegance and confidence was not her concern. All that mattered to her was rejoicing in her very own being. Something we all used to do as a child- carefree but had somehow suppressed due to our dominating egoistic nature. It was so good to see such stalwarts all around us,each fairing in the brightest way possible. ‘Pearls of Wisdom’ – as our GURUDEV, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar Ji calls us all. All of us were excelling in our fields and more than the excellence it was the happiness that had become our very own nature and more than the happiness it was the commitment and perseverance to spread this to all that was the realization that we were taking.
One of the wonderful pictures captured from the spiritual olympics held at Delhi- The Captial of India and now also the Spiritual Capital of The World.