…yoga tradition believes the universe is mirrored in each of us. Nature has a working set of solutions that is used on ever greater or lesser scales for everything, as our recent appreciation of fractals demonstrates. To understand something on a scale within our perceptual range allows us to imagine solutions to questions above or below that range.
Weight Loss Through Yoga, Jewel in the Lotus page 8
Spiritual growth takes a lot of energy. The yogi is trying to conserve energy, create more energy, and direct life force towards higher goals. Meditation can make us much more efficient. The time we devote to meditation is paid back many times over. The importance of being aware enough to see what is really going on can’t be overstated. A lot of time and effort can be squandered when viewing reality from a diminished perspective.
STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN
SHAKTI AND SHIVA — Myth explaining KOSHAS (5 sheaths of Being)
Individual consciousness and cosmic consciousness are one, separated by subjectivity. Humans have evolved to be capable of understanding beyond sensory perception for spiritual growth.
Consciousness is purusa, unchanging. In order to exist as a material life form it must combine with matter that is always changing, prakriti. This is a paradox. The Hindu yogic tradition uses the MYTH of SHIVA and SHAKTI to explain.
I had the good fortune to have come of age in the early 1960’s. The joke is “if you remember the 60’s, you weren’t there.” It was a wonderfully wild time to be alive and young. I have to chuckle recalling Timothy Leary’s admonition; “Don’t trust anyone over thirty.” We were the children taught to get under our desks and cover our heads if there was a nuclear attack; is it any wonder we grew up questioning the accepted reality? One, not living during that accelerated ‘Enlightenment’, can’t begin to imagine the period. As one song yelled “Kick out the Jams… Mother-Fucker!” It amazes me how conservative culture has become—in part a reaction to our concentrated, undisciplined and naive wildness.
“Turn on, Tune in… and Drop-out!” My rebirth had accelerated beyond a place where college related to my experience. A strange brew of experimentation and idealism fueled a lifestyle for many of my generation. Consciousness expanded by grass and psychedelics. A foolish war in Southeast Asia fought against on the home-front. Demanding civil liberty and human rights for racial minorities, sexual diversity, equal status for women — we were the warriors fighting for a New Age, and we found comfort during our struggles in each others arms. A sexual revolution unparalleled raged in a time period when sexually transmitted disease was easily controlled with antibiotics and Aids didn’t exist. Effective birth control was just invented. “Free Love” was our slogan and such a glorious period of random coupling!
You could safely hitchhike, probably picked up by other rebels and offered a joint. Many of us floated around on journeys of discovery. A good friend and kindred spirit, Scott Rund, returned from an extended adventure in Mexico. He had sent me magic mushrooms in a jar of honey he’d been given by a shaman in Wahaca, and on his return showed me two long cylindrical jars full of raw opals The beautiful gemstones were in water and still had bits of the rock they had been imbeded-in attached.
“I’ve decided, every time I sleep with a girl — I’ll give her one of these opals.” I remember thinking what a great idea, a sharing, after a sharing. Little did I realize how many mornings I’d wake after a night of blissful copulation and look over onto the bed stand or dresser of my impromptu perfect lover — and see one of those distinctive beautiful raw opals.
Telling this tale causes me to reflect on some lessons I might share as we are just starting this New Age where once again we’ll be using our bodies in a dance of liberation. This new dawn of Tantra. How easy it is when you have many varied partners to see them merge in your awareness, to be all one woman — each woman, all femininity. Yourself — represent all masculinity. How easy — especially then, on psychedelics — now, the heightened conscious gained through yoga making the drug no longer necessary — to merge with your partner in your embrace. A yin/yang with the dividing boundary dissolved, flowing into each other — Being One. Realizing that One is Divine. That One is All. That One is Us. We are Love!
Each of us is reading this page, a manifestation of the physical plane, with our eyes that exist at a frequency within the range of vibration that comprises the physical plane. The life force energy that animates the physical body and the mental body exists at a higher frequency. Thought, assimilating this stimulus, at yet an even finer vibrational level. The unacknowledged natural wisdom that coordinates these functions vibrates at an even higher frequency.
Consisting of a different frequency from the physical senses, the finer wave lengths comprising our ‘Being’ can’t be perceived with those physical sense organs. At an even higher frequency is the sensation of ‘Being’, the joy of existing right next to and feeling the presence of all that is Divine. The Divine is our SELF.
The ‘light’ of Self shines through these concentric layers of ‘Being’ producing the hologram others consider you.
Yoga Nidra as presented in this book was taught by Yogi Amrit Desai. If you feel it would be interesting or helpful to spend some time with a self-realized being, a true yogi guru of the Indian tradition, you might consider a pilgrimage to visit Yogi Amrit Desai. Known to his followers as Gurudev, he was a pioneer helping to bring yoga to America. He founded the Kripalu Yoga Center in Lennox, Massachusetts in the 1970’s. Once the center was established and thriving, politics surrounding misinterpretation of morality at different levels of spiritual development, threatened destruction of the resource. Amrit Desai selflessly walked away from his creation that it might continue to spread the message of yoga.
The Kripala Yoga Center continues and prospers, albeit without its original inspiration, and Gurudev maintains a peaceful presence at the Amrit Yoga Institute in Salt Springs, Florida surrounded by those who appreciate the importance of the guru as a spiritual resource. Amrit is a lively man in his eighties, and with amazing vital energy and amiable goodwill, he makes himself available to those who want to share his presence. It is an important part of spiritual education to be around such a teacher, to see how exceptional, yet human, they are and to observe the people around the guru, to see how they relate to each other and to their teacher.
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Each of us has the responsibility to create the best possible philosophy. Your outlook has to be your own. No thinker or religion can do this for you. Only you know what is most pleasing to you, and that should be the basis for forming your belief system. Imagine the best possible world and order your thinking to be that world.
Until we are reabsorbed into the Absolute, which is Truth, all truths (small letter ‘t’) are relative. As we evolve and come closer, things become clearer —but at any stage of the journey, pure clarity hasn’t been reached yet. Choose to see what is most pleasant. We are all doing the best we can. It’s too easy to look back at those you may consider less educated, less experienced, not as mature spiritually, and make judgements. Remember we are all only children spiritually.
Imagine a tetter-totter. An inclined plane balanced on a fulcrum. As you ascend one side, you are having to exert the energy to go up. Reaching the midpoint a shift occurs and now you have the ease of descent. Many of us are reaching a similar point of balance in our development. Now the effort is to relax and enjoy the ride. You have come to realize that reality is a manifestation of our beliefs, imaginings and dreams. Everything is out there and we empower what is to be.
As an Example: It is unacceptable a child be born with a major disability and that be the expression of all their life experience. If that same child experiences the disability for this lifetime, learns what is to be learned from the experience, and goes on to have many many more lifetimes, to experience many more sets of circumstance. Wakes up from this life, like awaking from a dream. This seems balanced and acceptable. So believe in reincarnation — that you want it to be that way is all the validation you need. Your compassion has taught you a lesson – YOU MAKE REALITY.
Have your love and compassion order your perspective. What appeals to you — Have it. Be it. Allow yourself to accept it. It is yours. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY. Don’t worry about impure motive or mistakes. We’ve got forever (now) – as you experience, expect your personal philosophy to reflect your growth. Things are going to change. Our resistance in embracing the natural order of change (evolution) only impedes progress. Things can be unimaginably better. Enjoy your desires in this moment. Have love and compassion form the next moment. ALL IS CONSCIOUSNESS.