Thy Will Be Done O Lord, Not Mine – Bhagavad Gita, Ch 15, Vs 8-11

Surrender

Previously:
A small part of My Eternal Self, becoming endowed with life in the world of the living, draws the five senses, with the mind as the sixth, to exist in material nature.

8
When Ishvara acquires a body, and also when He leaves it, He takes them where he goes, like a breeze carrying fragrance through the air.

Purushottama is the first Divine Individual in the Absolute to accept you as the same as Himself. When a part of Him goes with you into a body, He is called Ishvara. The senses and the mind manifest in material nature because of this relationship you have with God, Ishvara. When your body dies, and when you enter a new body, Ishvara goes with you, taking the five senses and the mind along.

You don’t lose your powers of perception or your mind when your body dies. 

It is because of Ishvara, the enjoyer-witness within, that your innate abilities, or powers — five senses and a mind — are manifested in the material world. Why? Because there are two along for the ride: Ishvara and the Real You, and because duality is the nature of this world, the physical senses and mind naturally become a part of it. 

The mind is called the sixth sense because it is connected with all five senses of perception. When perceiving, consciousness, which is the stuff the mind is made of (chitta), goes out from the mind to perceive objects of sense (sights, sounds, tastes, etc.). We know this feature of the mind as Attention.

When you see a beautiful sunset, it is your Attention going out through your eyes that sees the beautiful sunset. The sunset is the ‘object’ of your ‘sense of sight’. This experience is returned to your brain and mind (manas) and stored as a memory. Later, you re-member the sunset, and you see the image of it in your mind, even though you are no longer looking at it with your eyes. If you think about this, you will realize that this is an amazing power that you have!

9
The six senses of hearing, seeing, touching, tasting, smelling, and mind being dependent upon Him, He draws them around Himself and enjoys the objects of the senses.

“Dependent upon Him” refers to the senses and the mind as being dependent on that small portion of Absolute God (Purushottama) that came with you as Ishvara when you first embodied.

Ishvara, God within you, stays with you through life after life.  

The mind is made of consciousness (chitta). Consciousness gives you awareness of what the senses bring to you. You perceive these ‘objects’ and their concomitant experiences of pleasure or pain, joy or sorrow, like or dislike, etc.

These six senses are in Nature, and Nature is a dual affair.  

Having powers of perception is one thing. Being conscious of what is perceived is another. Just as we may be unaware of things in our peripheral vision, we are capable of being unaware of things perceived by any of the senses.

The mind is the source of your ability to be conscious of what is perceived by the senses, because it is made of consciousness.

Material things are perceived by the material senses in a material world of dualities. This is the cause of becoming identified with your body, mind and senses as yourself, and why your happiness or unhappiness with what you experience will always be temporal. 

The senses are like satellites around the world of the mind. The mind provides you with consciousness, understanding, and memory of what they perceive.

10 – 11
The unenlightened, deluded by the gunas, cannot perceive Him, whether departing, residing, or experiencing from within the body, but those enlightened by the eye of wisdom, can. The striving yogi can see Him situated within himself, but those who have not performed prescribed action, cannot.

  • Him – Ishvara. Purushottama, the ‘First Purusha’ who is your personal God, is called Ishvara when He goes with you into embodiment.
  • Eye of wisdom – This is a reference to Knowledge of Truth gained by the yogi who practices “prescribed action.” 
  • Striving yogi – The yogi who has dedicated himself to the “prescribed action,” persevered, and achieved yoga (union). This achievement does not happen over night, but the striving yogi persists with it until the goal is reached.

Now we have moved from the material to the subtle, and find that it is also possible to perceive things that are spiritual (non-material) by means of our non-material sense faculties (powers) … if we can see with the ‘eye of wisdom’. This Wisdom is actualized by means of “prescribed action,” the God-practice of surrender to Absolute God/Truth in meditation, which brings about enlightenment and trigunatita (‘beyond the gunas‘).

Surrender Only to Absolute God
Never just surrender. Surrender Only to Absolute God

Yoga means ‘uniting’. Dedicating yourself to this practice is a dedication to the union of self with the divine-other-than-self.

We are often told what not to do, but here Lord Krishna is telling us that there is something we must do in order to overcome our unenlightened state, and become God Realized, Self Realized, and liberated. He refers to this as “prescribed action.”

In the Gita we find different words for ‘action’ (karma). One of these words is kriya. Kriya refers to action that occurs spontaneously through surrender to Absolute God/Truth in meditation. Because non-static meditation is prescribed, kriya is the “prescribed action.”

‘Prescribed action’ does not mean that you use your will to accomplish something, but quite the opposite — you surrender your will to Absolute God in meditation, and the prescribed action takes place of its own accord, under the guidance of Absolute God/Truth. This surrender is the “prescribed action.”

“Thy will be done O Lord, not mine.”

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

Surrender Meditation

Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga
Spontaneous Experiential Meditation

Slip into a natural state of meditation with ease. Experience the relief of reaching a true meditative state without any effort and without using your will.

Receive shaktipat and become initiated into the original meditation of ancient masters from which meditation techniques were eventually derived.

Increase your knowledge base and begin Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga, Surrender Meditation. Though correct knowledge you will increase your progress by a thousand times, and bring about even deeper meditation and amazing experiences.

Shaktipat Intensives with Durga Ma are held in Phoenix, Arizona


“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.”

The Whole World Is One Family

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VI:10-12 Proper Conditions for Yoga

A yogi knows how to practice Yoga correctly, and resorts to solitude where things are not flitting around in his consciousness, distracting him with desires and creating attachments. 

10
Desireless and unattached, firm in the knowledge of the mysteries, the yogi always practices yoga alone and in solitude.  

A yogi knows and understands the mysteries and how to practice yoga correctly. He resorts to solitude because he is always engaged in this practice, and solitude insures his success. Yoga comes easily when desirable things are not flitting around in his consciousness, distracting him, stirring up desires and creating attachments.

Desire and attachment are the two most difficult things that confront the yogi, so he abandons them by staying away from them, and surrendering himself to God/Truth in solitude. 

11
Establishing himself in a clean place that can be relied upon, not to high and not too low, placing himself on kusha grass covered with a tiger skin and a cloth…..

The yogi lives alone in order to be able to rely on solitude, in a clean dwelling that is not too grand not not too humble, not too big and not too small. In this place he meditates on a mat of kusha grass overlaid with a tiger skin and a cloth. 

Tiger Skin
Another translation is ‘black antelope’. Both are traditional mats for yogis. 
I have taken the liberty of choosing the tiger skin for our translation, as my own lineage is Shaivite, and in this tradition Lord Shiva is said to have used a tiger skin. But what does this mean?

Icons of gods and goddesses show them as riding or sitting on various animals or their skins to indicate that they have mastery over the quality represented by that animal. For instance: Lord Shiva sits on a tiger skin, suggesting that he has overcome the aggressive quality of the tiger.

Riding on a live animal suggests that the god or goddess is able to use that quality for their own purposes. For instance: Durga rides a tiger, or in some cases a lion. She uses this quality to destroy obstacles on behalf of the gods (us). Garuda, who dines on snakes (desires), is the mount of Lord Vishnu, the sustainer of life. Garuda is a large, golden human-birdlike creature, suggesting ‘flying in the air’ (khechari) as the means of prana going upward to sustain life.  

Kusha Grass
Kusha grass is a grass with long pointed stalks used in religious ceremonies. Why? It certainly sounds uncomfortable.

First we have to remember when this was written—certainly a time before yoga mats!—and assume that there is something special about kusha grass.

Compounded with the word kusha in this verse, is uttara, meaning ‘upward (like stalks of grass), superior, northern, left’ and ‘most powerful, most excellent’. This mat is placed below the tiger skin, suggesting a base, or foundation, for the practice of yoga that is superior, north, left and the most powerful and excellent.

In the body, left is north and the face is east. We all face east (the senses are in the east, the face)—the sun rises in the east and with its light we can ‘see’, perceive. If you were to stand up right now and face east, north would be on your left, up.

This is a very deeply hidden message that the left-handed path is the most powerful and superior path. It is hidden so well because it is so susceptible to misunderstanding and has been practiced incorrectly at various points in history. Because humankind thinks that one must always be in control and never surrender, and believes it to the bone, this path is almost impossible to find in its authentic form in this day and age.  

Cloth
A garment or a cloth is a covering, meaning that all of this is covered, not immediately apparent, and hidden from the uninitiated. So we should consider ourselves very fortunate indeed, for having the opportunity to get these teachings straight from Lord Krishna, as we eavesdrop on his conversation with Arjuna.

12
There in that place, sitting or lying down, the mind and senses subdued by focus on one thing, he practices yoga for the purpose of self-purification.

The yogi is now ready for his practice. He may sit or lie down. Because he is a renunciate—he has set aside desires and attachments and surrendered himself to God/Truth—kriyas (purifying actions) occur spontaneously, and yoga (union) comes naturally of its own accord:

The focus being internally directed to one thing, the senses are withdrawn (pratyahara) and the energy concentrated (dharana), leading to a meditative state (dhyana) and the peaceful equanimity of sameness (samadhi), which is found only in the North.

Namaste (I bow to the Divine One that You really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

III:19 Heaven Within, Conclusion

Now that the previous verses have shown us what Heaven Within will be like, we must find out how to achieve it. 

BHAGAVAD GITA, CHAPTER 3, VERSE 19

19
Therefore, constantly unattached, practice that action which is to be done. Indeed, by performing such action while unattached, a person attains The Highest.

‘The Highest’: The Sanskrit word for ‘Highest’ is param which means ‘highest, beyond, supreme’, and many other things depending upon the usage, but here ‘The Highest’ works for both those who seek to reach the highest results in their various paths and endeavors, and for those who seek Truth in the Absolute sense.

‘That action which is to be done’: Earlier, Krishna explained that the yoga of action, Karma Yoga, was Arjuna’s natural path and that he should get on with it. Now He is reminding him that non-attachment to action as his own doing is necessary, as well as not being attached to the outcomes of actions, and by this, Arjuna will undoubtedly attain contentment and The Highest. The action that is to be done will differ from one person to another, depending upon their path, but for Arjuna, that path is Karma Yoga.

Regardless of one’s path, the thing to remember about these teachings is that, even though they are to be practiced by you, it is really nature causing the action—it is not really you doing it, for you are not nature. This remembrance cultivates non-attachment.

Karma Yoga

When in Surrender Meditation you give up your self-imposed role as the doer of actions, your are sacrificing your control over events. You make this sacrifice to God by surrendering yourself to God. It is a simple thing: All the things you think you are, and all the things you think you have, were never you nor yours. So how can anything be lost?

As you give up your belief in yourself as the ‘doer’, you gradually become detached from the effects of these actions, especially those that occur spontaneously in your meditation (i.e., kriyas). This is very difficult in life. It is easy in Surrender Meditation. As you continue to let go of these things in your meditation, you get better and better at it, and you come to see that nothing is really lost and everything is gained.

Heaven Within In a Nutshell – Verses 17 – 19

When a person finds pleasure within, that person finds that there is nothing to be done. Indeed, for this person there is no motivation for acting or not acting, and consequently, there is no aim or expectation regarding any being. Therefore, practice that action which is to be done, without attachment, for by performing such action while unattached, one attains The Highest.

Regardless of the disinterest in the things of this world that one may experience, sadhana (practice) continues, for once having tasted the nectar, having swum in the ocean of bliss of the Absolute, continuing sadhana is simply the natural order of the day. 

Coming this weekend:  Going for God

Namaste (I bow to the Divine One that You really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

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Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga – Surrender Meditation
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Practical Meditation