• Ahymsin Newsletter: Yoga is Samadhi

    Dear Yoga Mentor, My Question Is…

    Sometimes students have written to or asked Swami Veda Bharati, Swami Ritavan Bharati, and other senior teachers in our tradition questions about practice.  This is one such “Question and Answer,” or Q&A.


    I am lost. I believe meditation can heal. I fear I am too lost.


    Four have answered this question: Pandit Hari Shankar Dabral, Michael Smith, Carolyn Hume, and Stephen Parker (Stoma).

    From Pandit Hari Shankar Dabral:

    My dear, Namaste to you…


    Be happy that you know that you are lost. There are so many in the world who do not know that they are lost.

    This will give you right direction in life. 

    I would recommend you do some contemplation on what you would like to do with your life.

    Sri Swami Rama has taught us to do “inner dialogs.”

    Indeed, meditation will help but before you embark on meditation I would suggest that you go there Hatha Yoga and then breathing. Then meditation will begin to help the mind. It will give you clarity and intuition to move to the right direction.

    I hope this helps you...

    From Michael Smith:

    This might be a medical problem . . . so maybe an expert in the field should be consulted.

    But if this is an emotional problem, then I might be able to help by sending excerpts from many teachings given by Swami Rama and Swami Veda about the importance of not despairing . . . and many examples of “turn-abouts” with people who have despaired – “bottomed-out” – and then blossomed spiritually!

    Some examples are Pingala, Mary Magdalene, St. Paul, St. Augustine, St. Francis, Angulimala, Valmiki, et al. 

    Sometimes bottoming out is a prerequisite!

    From Carolyn Hume:

    You are acknowledging your fear as well as your feeling of being lost.  And this seems like a step towards finding your way.

    We have to start wherever we are. Meditation can help us deal with our problems and also lead us towards samadhi, which Swami Veda has called the "final healing." It can help us recognize and deal with our mental habits. This does not mean that we eschew medical doctors or psychologists. 

    You will not know whether meditation will help you until you try it, and it would probably be best to learn some of the techniques through teachers trained in our tradition. It is also not instant; it is something that one practices regularly over time.

    The element of learning to breathe diaphragmatically is important as are other elements in the teachings.

    Wishing you well in this journey of finding oneself.

    From Stephen Parker (Stoma):

    There is no such thing as too lost. And you are correct: meditation can help. But it is not a “dose-response” remedy. It’s something that requires some practice, starting with simple awareness of your breath, at every moment if you can. And formal meditation shows benefits even two minutes at a time. The effect is gradual but certain. So it is important to have patience and just keep at it. 

    There is a wonderful cartoon of a young yogi struggling up the mountain to his guru. He complains about the distractedness of his mind, his inability to be still and concentrate. The guru says, “Don’t worry, this will pass.” In the next frame, the young yogi is riding happily up the mountain. When he meets the guru, he says, “You were right!! My mind and body are still and I can concentrate beautifully!” The guru says, “Don’t worry, this will pass.” The mind’s process of cleansing itself takes some time. But it continues because there is an inborn drive to self-realisation in all of us. The more you practice awareness, the faster it goes and the more help you attract from the power of consciousness that is the one and only guru.

    Editor’s Notes:

    If you have a question about spiritual practice, you can use this link to ask it:  http://ahymsin.org/main/adhyatma-samiti-spiritual-committee.html

    To read “Dear Yoga Mentor, My Question Is…” columns, please use this link: http://ahymsin.org/main/practice/dear-yoga-mentor-my-question-is.html



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