Coming Together in Devotion – Bhagavad Gita, Ch 10, Vs 8-11

ComingTogether4

I am the origin of all that exists. Everything is set into motion from Me. Thus do the wise with the ability to meditate, worship Me. Their consciousness fixed on Me, their Life Energy flows to Me. Sharing their experiences of Me, they enlighten each other and are fulfilled and delighted.

“To those who are always thus devoted and worshipping with kindness and affection, I bestow this knowledge and understanding of Yoga by which they come to Me. For them, out of sympathy for their goal, I, dwelling within their own beings, cause the darkness produced by ignorance to be destroyed with the illuminating light of this knowledge.”

Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 10, Verses 8-11

Here we find the first obvious message stressing the importance of individuals coming together in order to reach God. This is critical for enriching the devotional side of YogaWithout it, it can be harsh and filled with difficulties. This can be mitigated by community and gatherings “accompanied by kindness and affection.” What a wonderful way to live! (See SKY Haven)

8
I am the origin of all that exists. Everything is set into motion from Me. Thus do the wise with the ability to meditate, worship Me.

Alternate translation:
I am all that is, for all that is comes forth from Me. With this understanding, one can meditate correctly. Thus does one truly worship Me.

If we understand what we have been taught, we have the ability to meditate. Correctly practiced, meditation is worship of God. To meditate correctly one needs the knowledge and understanding by which one’s meditation is “yoga practiced without alteration of the rule and observed before any other rule as one’s first duty,” as mentioned in verse seven.  

9
Their consciousness fixed on Me, their Life Energy flows to Me. Sharing their experiences of Me, they enlighten each other and are fulfilled and delighted.

“Their consciousness fixed on Me”
The Sanskrit for attention is chitta. Chitta is consciousness—not consciousness of something, but pure consciousness itself, the subtlest form of divine energy.

“Their Life Energy flowing to Me”
When chitta flows to something, someone or some place, it is called attention, and where the attention goes, the Life Energy in the body, called prana, also goes.

The stuff of which the mind is made, is chitta, consciousness. 
Attention is a flow of consciousness from the mind to anything that is other than self.

Mind > AttentionWhere the attention goes, the energy flows.

With the attention going to Lord Krishna, one’s Life Energy goes to, and can unite with, Lord Krishna, Highest and First Purusha, Personal God. 

In “Finding the Magician Within” we were alerted to the extreme importance of Attention as being the key to achieving just about anything. This was presented in the context of reaching God/Truth, but it applies to anything. We even brought up Life Mastery in that article, and the necessity of constant Attention on the goal in order to attain it. Lord Krishna is bringing us back to this in this verse when He says that with consciousness (attention) fixed on Him, our Life Energy also flows to Him. This was earlier referred to as ‘worship’, or ‘meditation’, as the means of attaining union (yoga) with God.

You get what you worship

Dance and ChantThe next piece of the verse suggests that the most satisfying and pleasant way for accomplishing this is to be together with others with whom you can share Truth. This is called satsanga (‘Truth-sharing’).
Satsanga - ChantingSatsanga often includes any or all of the following: darshan (meeting the guru), kritana (music, dancing and singing to and about God/Truth), sharing experiences, and receiving teachings. In this way we “enlighten each other.” We awaken each other to God/Truth, and our attachments to previously limited expectations and ideas are forgotten. Enjoying this process, we find that our attention effortlessly remains on God/Truth throughout.

10 – 11
To these worshippers, who are always thus devoted and worshipping with kindness and affection, I bestow this knowledge and understanding of Yoga by which they come to Me.
For them, out of sympathy for their goal, I, dwelling within their own beings, cause the darkness produced by ignorance to be destroyed, with the shining lamp of this knowledge.

Always means always. Continuously coming together according to the previous verse. If we understand the universality of God’s presence within everyone and everything, we will naturally be kind and treat each other with affection. This being the case, one is enlightened as to the Truth of Yoga as the means of union with God/Truth. This union destroys the darkness of ignorance, and proves the Yoga we have been taught.

This enlightenment is possible because of God’s already existent presence within all of us. God is saying that, because we understand this, practice Yoga and treat each other well, we need make no further effort, for God will turn the lights on for us.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one you really are),
Durga Ma
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Spiritual Ego

This is just me, Anandi. Writing to you from the top of a mountain. A silently alive paradise that sits suspended in the ether — between the dramatic waves of the Pacific and the gentle giants that are the Redwoods.

I am going to share the dialogue that has been running through my head from the night, early morning into now. Im doing this to help hang onto the things that are arising for contemplation and with the hope that it may somehow be beneficial for you in some way.

Just a recollection of my stream of consciousness … no edits. sorry.

One of the most valuable things I have learned from being with Durga Ma is about ‘identification’ and beginning to understand the spiritual ego. It’s not anything specific she has said, but the way that she has interacted with me on a ‘human’ and personal level.

I had created an idea in my mind unknowingly about what spirituality looked like and how it would behave and present itself. This came after awakening experiences in the wake of phenomenon, and was strengthened by the way others around me were presenting themselves in the spiritual community. None of them were masters.

What I have come to learn and what has had the most profound outward effect for me is the roundedness and down to earth regularity of Durga Ma. I wouldn’t necessarily know that she was a master if I didn’t know. This is really important, I don’t know if it was so important in days gone by.

What I see increasingly in the world is people trying to transcend their humanness. This is like “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” as Ma says… I think transcending the humanness becomes the “danger zone” where the spiritual ego can really take shape and the difficulty on recognizing it and moving beyond it comes from the fact that the mind has used, and will continue to use, the aspects of spirituality (teachings, experience, etc.) in an effort to establish a pure logic (all or nothing) type of state.

What is more, I think that if the mind has a memory of an awakening it can use this to further make the mind’s alibi watertight. Stuck in transcendence. This is a doozy…. really getting stuck in a deeper state of separation in some ways because now the mind has not only gone into transcendence but is constantly working to stay there outside of the body and physical existence and can use the information gathered ‘spiritually’ to keep it there. It is a trap without the guidance of a master, or a stroke of absolute Grace.

I see a LOT of people doing this now. Most of the ‘spiritual’ people I know.

I’m wondering now if what is often needed is just normal, ‘non-spiritual’ company — in other words, real spiritual people, actual yogis, real people — not the people who are riding around in inflated spiritual egos. It’s easier to become relaxed and trusting when we talk about normal everyday things, our experiences, our lives and where we came from. We don’t have to work at conversation to maintain what we think is spirituality and how it should be talked about and communicated…the only real substance (energetic alignment so to speak) comes from the way we actually relate with each other.

The longer I stay with Durga Ma, the more I get out of it. I want to absorb as much as I possibly can, although the speed at which it occurs when I get to be physically present is such that I find myself experiencing a sensation of near explosion. My head literally goes through periods of feeling like its going to explode. I don’t care, because there is this part of me that just doesn’t care and wants to go on ahead regardless.

I want to be here or near Durga Ma wherever she is, but even in the days of being here I feel myself taking off and abandoning my life responsibilities. I use the word ‘abandon’ because of a control aspect…a subtle piece that I can’t exactly identify other than that it is not a completely conscious choice to surrender. It’s what my heart wants, but it’s like there is a piece that is missing and first I have to reclaim it to surrender it. Sounds ironic but its the only way I can manage to say it.

Particularly with Sam at this age (3), Im not boasting but I’m the sanest person he knows, and I’m his mother. I feel it is my duty to keep him close, and my responsibility to do my best to stay with him until I either just can’t anymore or until he’s gotten enough independence for himself to choose otherwise.

This path is sometimes difficult with a family. Not impossible.

Om Shanti, Namaste,
Anandi

SKY Haven

My motivation for the creation of SKY Haven is its Core as described in “Community“, on this website.

SKY Haven’s Core 

The full-time practice of Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga (Surrender Meditation) requires special conditions that do not presently exist elsewhere in the U.S. This refuge is desperately needed for those who wish to take this sadhana to its fulfillment. Such a place requires that individuals may live independently within the context of these special conditions.

Some of these conditions are that practitioners not have the usual distractions of having to earn a living, deal with snakes and predators (including human ones), noisy peacocks, traffic or other forms of pollution, and have special living conditions such as appropriate dwellings, privacy, abundant water and other provisions as stated in the shastras (spiritual texts). These practitioners will, of course, be few.

Durga Ma’s Onion, as described in Community, is much more complexed than I would actually like it to be, but I put it together this way as a means of including householders and other students who would like to be close by, or have access, without having to live in the Core and practice full time sadhana. However, there are other ways of accomplishing this that have already been successfully demonstrated by other groups whose model we could use as a guide. Until this strata is needed we will keep things simple and concentrate on the Core, keeping our minds open to different ways of accomplishing any expansion we need when we need it. Large, multi-strata communities are much more vulnerable to internal difficulties anyway, so we will start start simply, and see how things evolve.

Past Experience

I have learned through experience the hazards of putting things like this together, and I do not intend to make the same mistakes again. SKY Haven will not be a democracy, socialist, communist, or any other such political model, which will eliminate some of the flaws and temptations inherent in these systems. SKY Haven will be a benevolent monarchy.

The monarch will have an advisory board including at least one attorney and one qualified psychologist, and other experts. If such expertise is not among us, they will be hired. Persons desirous of residency will be screened. Laws, building codes and zoning laws will be carried out to the letter. Any illegal activities or substances will be prohibited and violators evicted. SKY Haven dharma will be short and sweet, and based primarily on the Yamas and Niyamas, and will include simple parameters for building dwellings.

My previous attempt at creating such a place started out well and ended in disaster. One person, who had contributed money and lived there, came to feel that he owned the place and anything and everything on it, including Durga Ma. He became abusive and I became concerned for the safety of all of us. There were seven dwellings, four people in residence and two more preparing to come, leaving one cabin for guests. He refused to leave, so I did, and things fell apart from there. I learned a great deal from this experience, hence the above mentioned monarchy with its advisory board and experts.

Trusting Each Other

What all this comes down to is that we will need to be able to trust each other. I need to be able to trust you, and you need to be able to trust me. We must be able to be kind and direct with each other. No one should ever be living in fear of being controlled or manipulated by anyone else. Nor should I. We must all be and behave as mature adults. As divine individuals, we are all equal in what it is that we really are, and we must keep this, and the significance of it, in mind in all our dealings.

I do hope that those of you who want to take up this sadhana full time, now or in the future, will find this approach reassuring. It may look a little tough and tight, but I believe these strategies are necessary to make a go of things and maintain them with the least amount of difficulty.

I have no particular wish to be a leader and will always take the simplest route, listen to the people involved, and do my homework … but I may ask for help.

Love,
Durga Ma
durgama.com