Thursday, July 28, 2016

When will you get enlightened? - from Yoga Vasistha knowledge series

The last question of the session was
Who decides when I get enlightened?
< Nakul's Answer came spontaneously as >
Its YOU. 
Ok, its time to wrap up. Next session is on sunday 31st July at 9PM. Jai Gurudev.

I was lost.
All my definitions were flying in the sky, scattered clouds.
Mind was unsettled.
How can it be?
How can I decide when I want to be enlighten?
Is it so straightforward?
Is it so easy?
What about karmas?
What about grace?
Mind was flooded with queries.
The best type of answers don't have questions.
The deepest questions have no answers.
Who is this YOU that Nakul was referring to?
Was it me in my current disposition?
Will it be me in some future evolved disposition?
Where will I be and what will I be in order to be THE YOU that Nakul was referring to?
story time
Gadhi was a pious brahmana who once lived in Kosala. He went to the forest and meditated for 8 months. When Lord Vishnu appeared he granted him the boon to observe maya as he would and disappeared. He contemplated on the boon.

One morning Gadhi went to the river and took a dip while praying. As he was under water he found that he was dead and leaving his body. Everyone was grieving around him. He moved on and entered the womb of a tribal women. He was born as Katanja, a fierce tribesman who had got married and had many children. There was a famine in the village and all his children and friends died one by one. He got frustrated and left the village.

He reached the Kingdom of Kira where the King had died without heir and the royal elephant was searching for next King. The elephant lifted him and he was made the King Gavala who ruled for 8 years.

One day King Gavala got up early and unadorned in royal dress went out for a walk like simpleton. A group of tribesmen were singing a tribal melody. He picked the tuned and started to hum. An elder tribesman recognized him and proclaimed "Hey Katanja, am delighted to see you, long time".

By then everyone relaized that they were ruled by a lowly tribal and created a large pyre and immersed themselves in it. Even Katanja felt that death is better than life. Dishonored he offered his body to flames.

Gadhi came out of water gasping for breath. He was confused at this vision and thought it to be trick of the mind. As he reached home he found a Brahmana traveller looking for a place to stay. He welcome him and asked him why did he looked so worn. The traveller said he was coming from a kingdom in north which was ruled by a tribal and many people killed themselves feeling polluted. I too have been fasting to release ill effects of this pollution and am breaking the fast today.

Gadhi was lost. Next day he went north and first found his tribal village with bones around. On enquiry the villagers told the story of Katanja. Then he moved on to Kira and the people there talked about King Gavala who ruled them 12 years ago.

Confused Gadhi meditated and prayed to Lord Vishnu.
Lord Vishnu came along and asked him, now what? Gadhi enquired about what he saw.
Lord Vishnu mentioned

Sometimes its possible to many people to witness the same dream. They participate in it as if it were they. This hallucination is creation of the mind. So even though it may be true that all these people may have appeared in past and participated in those events you may/may not have been center of those worlds. Now meditate for 10 years and you will come out of all these hallucinations.
someone asked
How is it that experience with Lord Vishnu was not itself an illusion?
Nakul's answer
When the mind is integrated, focused, it is then truth appears. Truth in the form of Lord Vishnu. This generally happens in puja/prayer, in meditation.
 When the entire YOU is offered as offering to the puja. When the COMPLETE YOU does the puja, only then reality appears. Until then its the scattered mind, all over the place.  Walking from one illusion to another.
Its like a table full of laptop, notebooks, pen stand, etc., flooded with items essential for daily work to happen. You need them when you work. In  प्रवृत्ति pravarti you need them. When you are participate in world you need them.
but you don't need them in निवृत्ति /nivratti, when you retreat inside, go in. Even knowledge has to be discarded while going in. All items on tables are useless while going in. Just swipe them away and empty the table. Discard all and enquire what comes up during retreat, during meditations. 
If you feel something and be something, enquire it, observe. Keep throwing them away like jackets. Jackets have a purpose in cold chilly outside world but inside makes no sense. Even this body makes no meaning during retreat, like a jacket discard it, move on from body consciousness. 
Once you have discarded all then what remains is reality, the real you, the truth.
And it can happen only in meditation. And the meditation is the only self-effort you need. Everything else is secondary, add-on. Primary is your self-effort, self-enquiry. There YOU can decide when to become enlighten.

Above article is inspired post listening to 9th episode of Commentary On Yoga Vashitha by Nakul Dhawan Ji from +The Art of Living session being given at +Art of Living International Center at Bangalore. The next session is on 9PM , Sunday, July 31. You can also register online to watch it along with 8 earlier sessions.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Freeing the mind and egolessness - from Yoga Vasistha knowledge series

The subtle combo of mind+intellect+memory+ego runs in self-feeding cycle.

Ego brings forth the I-ness.
Ego nudges the memory to bring into focus an incident/situation in which it triumphs or suffers. Memory nudges the intellect to argue on the situation. Intellect creates the argument and prepares the mind to have the argument. The mind comes into existence with the thoughts germinated in the intellect. The thoughts hail or destruct the ego. And the journey of life begins. You are born.

Why are you born?
A little story.
Once Vishnu was in BrahmaLok and everyone came forth to welcome him except Sanath Kumar. When you get "don't care" in dispassion then its arrogance. Vishnu sensed this and cursed SanathKumar to spent one lifetime on Earth as punishment, as a journey to dissipate this arrogance/egoness. At that moment SanathKumar also cursed Vishnu to spent a lifetime on Earth while he was there and so Shree Ram was born.

So tell me why were you born? hmm..

Even Vishnu is sport enough to participate in this Game of life. So what makes you abhor it?

Heres one more story for your musings.
Once Demons Guru's Shukracharya mother (Rishi Bhrigu's wife) was protecting them and they could not be defeated so the Angels went and seeked Vishnu's help. Vishnu killed Brigu's wife and angels could defeat the Demons again. But Bhrigu grieved in the loss and cursed Vishnu that the pain that I am going through even you will go through on Earth. And thus Sita was separated from Shree Ram.

I-dent-ity == I --> DENT --> इति (the end)
Meditation is denting the I and bring it to an end. The entire life is given to fulfil this mission.
Even the above denting of ego definition was born in the morning Sadhana (Sahaj Samadhi meditation + Padma Sadhana + Sudarshan Kriya + Pranayamas + Surya Namaskars in reverse order).

Ego is about creating an identity. A definition based on certain like/dislike at that point in time. So you become that definition.

My definition at this point in time could be "I am very sensitive, don't like loud music, abhor non-veg, feel pity for people who smoke/drink liquor, life without Guru would be meaningless".

My definition of my ego at college days could be "I like blaring music into my headphones, a smoke here and there is fine, Nature is my Guru and I don't need any human intervention".

Ego likes shrinking, creating separation, building boundaries, limiting expression.

Egolessness is about destroying these likes/dislikes. Its about expansion, union, breaking barriers, unlimited expression.

Experiencing the infinite in this finite form is no mind (free mind).

There you need a little hand holding, because you are getting into a realm which is beyond. That is why you need a Guru, a master to take you across this river. A river sometimes serene and sometimes on fire. The source of this river like mind is ego.  The journey of the river is this life. The destination is one more attempt to merge with the ocean of consciousness. But if the waves of arrogance continue in the ocean then they evaporate and form clouds, hit the mountains and become source of river again. And the cycle continues.

Above article is inspired post listening to 8th episode of Commentary On Yoga Vashitha by Nakul Dhawan Ji from +The Art of Living session being given at +Art of Living International Center at Bangalore. The next session is on 9PM , wednesday, July 27. You can also register online to watch it along with 8 earlier sessions.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Purpose of life - from Yoga Vasistha knowledge series

The purpose of life is to be liberated.

Your life is designed for liberation.

The life is a progression towards liberation.

Q> What is liberation from?
A> It is from your ego.

Q> Who is the guardian of ego?
A> The mind.

Q> Can you compare this progression of life to something?
A> Its like the river cleaning the impurity thrown into it and making it spotless, clean. It is the nature of the river to clean. After some travel the impurity becomes pure, loses its identity, loses its ego. You just merge.

Q> Need another example, not so clear?
A> Imagine a fire in the forest. Wood burning and smoke rising. The smoke can rise only to certain height, the smoke will travel certain distance. After some rise, some travel, it disappears into the space. It simply merges, loses its identity.

Our life is also like that. Its an opportunity for us to paint on an empty canvas. It's upto you to make this progression enjoyable or full of hassles. We may drag life or we can enjoy life. In either case it will end.
But before it ends what have you done to accelerate the decay of ego-self.  

There is only one board exam or 10th class exam. Once you clear it in life you do not give it again. You may go back to teach for 10th class but never to give the exam.

Once you attain liberation, the life force lifecycle is within you. The prana is within you. All the liberated beings are here, either in form or formless.

Above article is inspired post listening to 8th episode of Commentary On Yoga Vashitha by Nakul Dhawan Ji from +The Art of Living session being given at +Art of Living International Center at Bangalore. The next session is on 9PM , wednesday. You can also register online to watch it and 8 earlier sessions.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

The History of Anger


It has been a difficult emotion, expressed indifferently and at unexpected moments in life.

It has affected my parents, me, my spouse, my children, my colleagues and somebodies whom I have directly or indirectly interacted in past.
But it was a call to the SBI call center which brought the anger expression into perspective.

I had ignored my SBI current account for few months. I was out of freelancing since a while and there was not much action happening there.
But I happen to see the yearly statement by chance while making a bill payment. I noticed that on 2 occasions the bank had fines me for around INR 650.
Instantly sent them email. Not satisfied called them up. A lady agent received the call and explained that “rules say”
If you do not maintain a minimum balance of INR 10000 per quarter you will be charged around INR 650 per quarter.
I explained that I was not aware of the rule.
She said, she cannot even take a complaint as it was crystal clear rule which I should have been aware of.
This is the moment in the call when logic fails and you take alternate path of force to enforce your point. At this juncture some people choose to
  1. raise their voice and make their point
  2. verbally abuse
  3. etc.,
I too had reached that point of inflection. On any other day I would have used the loudness of voice and sharpness of logic to cut through the point, even though here I was on wrong side.

Last few days I had been building a case of “shouting culture” at work place and how it is destructive for healthy growth of any organizations. Some people believe that a certain degree of fear and angst drives people to become more productive.
My developing theory against shouting culture was that
  1. it emotionally breaks an individual
  2. it kills their enthusiasm
  3. the drive to contribute to the welfare and development of idea/product/service fades
  4. the confidence goes out of window
  5. the nerves can touch breakdown point
  6. etc.,

Now coming back to the bank complaint call. I was on the verge of displaying vocal violence. At that precise moment this knowledge came from somewhere.
Its okay if I shout but its not ok if others shout on me.
I was stunned. Every one in past had complained about my mis-managed expression of anger. Now in that moment this realization moderated my tone and I continued with the complaint in most gentlemanly manner.
I requested to talk to her superior and explained to poor manager that
Customers can also be dumb and stupid. They can forget rules and regulations that banks impose. Banks are also equally responsible for not informing the ignorant customer about a rule miss, before, during and after the rule has been missed. And not make this as their primary business model.
For the first time in all complaints in my life I had felt that this fine of INR 1300 had opened my eyes to a different expression of anger. The anger in which you make your point in a manner which it is as human as can be under the circumstance and still don’t feel the pinch of losing out.

How has mis-managed anger helped/disrupted your life?
Do you think there is a link between meditation and knowledge surfacing at the right moment?

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