|Awakening the Antaryamin-Moving From Belief to Discovery
|From an Ananda Yajna (Retreat For Bliss) with Dharma Dharini
Early on, the American, Swedish and Russian training at Satyaloka was centered around the Septanga Marga or 7 Fold Path. To perfect anyone of the bodies such as the Ananda Maya Kosha, (bliss Body) Karma Maya Kosha (Kamic Energy Body) etc. could lead to enlightenment. Sadhanas were employed to strengthen each one such as Kalki Dhyana, fasting, celibacy, vegetarian diet, karma Yoga, chakra dhyana, hatha yoga, and numerous other spiritual practices. We fasted for days and after some time only slept 2-3 hours a night if at all. The evening sessions and meditations with the monks often started before sunset, ended around 3 AM,, resumed the next day shortly after sunrise.
The energy was so high-so bio-available- the physical body did not have the same needs as it might in another place. We discovered how to eat light-actual light not lightly. Most of the retreat participants had experienced the Awakening of the Antaryamin (Indweller or Divine Within) before going to Satyaloka and receiving diksha. Rarely would you leave a good job, put your home on the line, frighten your relatives by going to the South Indian Mountains for 6-9 weeks where there would be little or no outside communication, on promises alone. It was a calling. It was Grace.
We did not even know upon embarking on that first trip that we would be taking vows and taking over the teaching duties of the monks in the USA. Some of the young men had brought survival kits in case they felt they need to escape. During the preliminary meeting, when a monk had come to invite us and help us to prepare, he told us that they really did not know what would happen. The state would be like putting a jet engine into a Volkswagen, so we must be sure to do the sadhanas, (spiritual practices) to be prepared on many levels. He told us that we would experience a higher state than what was given to a Christ or a Buddha or they would carry our dead bodies out of there. A woman laughed and was asked to leave if she could not take it seriously.
Only several dikshas were given during the intensive retreats the first 3 years at Satyaloka. Others who were teaching were given additional dikshas for various effects to help in our work. I was given diksha for several siddhi powers by a young enlightened female monk names Acharya Sri Samadarshini that were critical to help the people in my work. Sri Raniji was also given many dikshas to help her in her work as the USA leader. Additional diksha was given when it was decided to change several of our names to be more inline with the karma.
There are many kinds of dikshas. If you google diksha you will see this. The first diksha that the original teachers gave, beginning in 1998, was simply called a healing diksha. One of the monks named it Anugraha Diksha, but I do not think we ever called it that except maybe on a sign at an expo as people wanted a name for it. Mostly we just said it was a spiritual initiation from an ancient lineage of enlightened masters that could help people to be free of suffering-to become God realized and enlightened.
I would not say that it de-clutched the mind as some speak of the Oneness Blessing nor did it give a particularly blissful feeling, It did however give relief from inner and outer world sufferings and many clearly had enlightenment experiences, particularly the actual seeing of God in everything as an effect of the healing. They began to live in great states of joy, surrender and grace. To enter this state, great happiness can occur, as well as states of unconditional love. Surrender is closely linked with acceptance and freedom.
The ancients defined love as acceptance and hatred as non acceptance or wanting to change. Consider this: A man says he wants to change his ways. in essence he does not accept the the way he is. You could say that he hates his condition. A woman wants to change the decor in the room. She tells her husband she cannot stand it another day. She cannot accept the way it is. She hates the room so she will do what she can to change it. With this ancient definition in mind of acceptance as love and hatred as non-acceptance or desiring change, rarely has there been a political aura in the USA with such an outward expression of hatred. There are posters and rallies for Change and bumper stickers expressing hatred for the hatred that say "Keep the Change."
Those of you that have gone to innumerable workshops, desiring a change in your life, could it be that the hatred of the current condition and the projection of that condition onto others is creating blockages for you? Can you just this once look at your condition, whatever is there and embrace it-accept that it is there so that the doors of the mystical realm will open for you?
Look into your lives for a moment. What is it you would like to change? It is there that you will find the non-acceptance-the hatred. Who in your life would you like to change? Some may say that you love your children unconditionally yet there may be a few "if onlys". If only she were not so short tempered and messy" or "if only he was not so stubborn." "If only he were a better student." A young woman marries a man and vows to love (accept) him and she spends much of her time trying to change him-hating him by the ancient definition.
With this desire for change comes a desire to control. Some of you are here to grow while others only want to control everything. Everything from the alter, to the candles, to the flowers, to the food, to the thermostat, to the lights, to the music, to who can sit in the front, to where will will meet, to who can register, and what I will tell you the next time. Everything you want to rearrange and change. You are wearing yourselves out. Can you consider for a moment that the Universe is perfect? Can you step into the flow of love and accept-even if it is something little? Look at your condition, what is it about yourself that you want to change? There you will find the self-hatred, or more kindly the non-acceptance.
It is not judgement of others causing the blockages. It is more often than not a refusal to see or a running from what is there. Some have almost made a career of trying to become non -judgmental while judging others for judging. It is another way to run from what is there-this practice of non-judgement. It is the nature of the mind to judge. How else would the mind find some semblance of relativity in a dependently arising creation where there are no absolutes-where what was truth yesterday may be untruth today? The mind is constantly seeking definition where none exists. On one level it is binary. It seeks a yes or a no. He loves me he loves me not he loves me he loves me not. It goes back and forth like a teeter totter with each new piece of data. If you try to stop judging you will make a big mess of things. It is in conflict with the program-a fatal error so to speak. You need only be aware that you are judging. Just as you must only see that there are those you might wish to change so perhaps you are not the embodiment of unconditional love after all. Do not attempt to change it, just see what is there. Realization and awareness are powerful catalysts.
Another blockage to awakening is the tendency to explain some traits away by saying, "Well everyone feels that way now and then" or "Nobody is perfect, you are worse", "or "Well i cannot help it, it is from childhood." The content-whatever is there- is irrelevant. You must only see it. You could be a saint or not so saintly. If there is blaming, explaining yourself or justifying there is not going to be enough focus on the suffering or the condition to be of much benefit. The blaming is just another way to run away from suffering-to manage sorrow.
The fellow next to you that has experienced this awakening of the Antaryamin, that you may have deemed less worthy than you, has simply realized, embraced and seen the helplessness in his condition. He has not tried to explain what is there away, create a mask or an image or run from himself.
He is a spiritual warrior. He did not run away. He sat down, looked at himself and embraced all of it. At lunch if you were tell the man in the corner who was weeping with bliss and dancing with the Lord in some form that you think he is an idiot, a sinner, a liar, and adulterer, an angry person, or an ass and he may smile and say, "Oh yes! I am that.!" Tell another who is angry, jealous or hurt because she has deemed herself more worthy yet this awakening experience has happened for another and not for her, and she will inevitably step into a cycle of offending and defending get nowhere once again. Just round and round and round and round in that non-stop cycle. Self righteous is a huge obstacle to both Mukti and Moksha.
This age old conflict between what you are and what you want to be is causing so much suffering for you and for those around you. What I am telling is among the ancient keys for you to experience what has been revealed to every saint sage prophet and mystic. Consider this for a moment, do you think the Divine appeared to someone who was already a saint because they were so worthy? Or did the Divine appear to a very average person and transform them more out of necessity? How could we ever be worthy of this? Yet some would sit practicing sainthood before the experience of a common denominator in the lives of all saints-the profound divine mystical experience-the awakening. This is reformation. Have you read about the life of the Apostle Paul? How about Joan of Arc? There is Saint Longinus, the legendary Roman soldier who pierced the side of Christ at the crucifixion and then saw that he was the Lord. They called it "The Sword of Destiny." Many of the saints had taken many lives.
I will tell you a story: In ancient times if there was an enlightened master, word would get around and seekers would set out on foot and come from far away places to see that master. Kings would sleep at the ashrams next to farmers. The caste made no difference. There were no VIP areas like there are in many modern ashrams. One man left his home and walked for years to see such a master.
When he finally arrived the master was sitting on a chair in a room next to a table. People were crowded into the room and were staring at him. This is called darshan (laughter). Some brought him gifts. The man trampled and pushed some others made his way to the front of the room very near the master. Just then a young woman ran into the room from the door behind the master, fell to her knees and said, "Brother, my children are hungry. You must help me!"
The master struck at her and told her to leave at once as the sight of her made him sick. A gasp went up. The security that some had taken in the master was beginning to fall away and suffering was arising in some, There were whispers and chattering. The master closed his eyes and held up his hands in a gesture of bendiftion. Just then, the unthinkable happened. A rat ran out from under the table. The master smiled at the rat and pulled some bread out of the sleeve of his robe. He began to feed the rat. More gasps. A man yelled. Another fainted.
The man who had walked so far cried out, "You would deny your sister and her children and feed a rat? You are a fraud, sir- a horrible fellow. We should all leave at once. What a waste of time! I cannot believe this happened!"
The master looked up from feeding the rat, looked at the man, smiled and said, "That is the difference between you and I, sir. I am what I am."
Now we will chant the mantra 7 times and ask to see and embrace what is there. Please do not interfere with anyone around you or attempt to touch them or comfort them. If you have to use the restroom or leave I would ask you either leave now until the experience is over or wait until this part is over to leave. Think of it as karma yoga. You can do this for the group. Do not focus on the people around you. Constant comparison will not help you. It is another way to run from what is there. This is an inward journey. Look at yourself only.
(Mantra and Meditation)
Now back to the healing diksha. You did not think you were going to have to do any work today, did you?
We used this earlier diksha for healing and more often than not it came with a vision- a shaman or healing story or vision quest by proxy so to speak- that did not mean so much to you but if conveyed seemed to be very significant to the one receiving the diksha no matter how strange it seemed.
This diksha had an interesting effect that some people would have profound divine mystical experience (personal and undeniable encounter with the Divine that would move them from belief to personal experience. Such experience was important to those seeking a state of Oneness because it is belief (ignorance) that separates mankind while experience unites. Such mystical experience always leads to some level of transformation. Many became God realized, experienced the Awakening of the Antaryamin as a result. This progression of transformation or God realization before enlightenment is among others part of an ancient way called the Bhakti Marga or God centered or mystical path. It is the most beautiful and graceful of journeys.
It was remarkable to see someone who did not really consider themselves a spiritual seeker upon receiving this healing diksha. He or she was just seeking some relief for arthritis or allergies or some other physical suffering, received the healing diksha and awakened as a mystic. The early retreats were called Awakening the Mystic Within.
Once the awakening occurred the transformation was inevitable. There was no more of the horror show, guilt and conflict of practiced virtue. Instead of practicing an ideal such as acceptance, it became the true nature. Man cannot transform himself, that he can only reform. Transformation is grace. Some, however. may enter a high state of reformation, brought about by practiced virtue, where they do not experience fear anger, hatred, jealousy etc. however sometimes the emotion has been cut or reigned in to such a degree that the being may actually feel little of anything at all. This is more of a state of a living corpse yet is sometimes mistaken for enlightenment, spiritual attainment, or unconditional love.
When we conducted yajnas there was little diksha. Just before the awakening of the Antaryamin experience it was given. This awakening at times caused some hurt division among the people in the retreats as some felt they were more worthy than the deemed lessor fallen fellow sitting next to them who was now walking and talking with God in a form- experiencing what had been revealed to every saint, sage, prophet and mystic throughout the ages. Self righteousness is are among the greatest of obstacles to both mukti and moksha.
What was really remarkable about this early diksha is that was that someone could have visited 50 different booths at a health expo and had all kinds of energy work yet they would inevitably associate this awakening with the diksha. In addition to calls about incredible healings, calls would come in to the effect of, "You won't believe this but I saw God and He told me this. My life is very different now. I see Him everywhere. He is in my heart, in the wind in the sun, in my husband, in the soapsuds in the sink! Everywhere! I am in peace. How did you guys do that? How can I learn this?" They would be invited to a retreat and some would go on to Satyaloka to train.
We also used this diksha for chakra balancing for those who had no pressing health issues. Every now and then someone would do a before and after photo if there was an aura camera at the expo One photo was particularly remarkable in that you could see the form of a golden being in the heart center of a lady in her "after" photo. She was weeping with joy.
This diksha was fueled by gratitude as when you were giving there was gratitude, you also had to have compassion-be able to feel for that person-we would pray to feel their pain- and as long as the person maintained a state of gratitude to the Divine the healing would stick. Gratiitude and suffering rarely coexist.
Gratitude was born on the part of the one giving the diksha as well. I remember a man came to me at a Health Expo. He had been abused severely as a child and he had a stutter as a result. His arm hurt all the time and he could barely write. That is what he wanted really, to be able to write clearly. I prayed to be able to feel his pain and it came into me so hard and fast I almost fell over. How could he have survived that? How can he carry that burden day after day? I began to weep for him as we were enveloped in golden light.
Then I felt this causeless love I had never experienced before and was so grateful to him. On one level there was a sensation that he had gone through that terrible suffering so I could have that experience. I could not be more grateful to him. Sometimes these states occur where there is a seeing that you are so loved by the Universe that everything that has happened to that point, both good and bad was so you could arrive at and experience the Grace of that moment. Everything that once appeared to be external can be seen inside, Every bird that flies, everything. It is there. It is enough to bring you to your knees. He began to weep with gratitude as he clearly wrote his name and moved his arm. In that gratitude we became as one being for some time.
Now we will chant the mantra 7 times. and will ask the Divine to appear to us in a form or in a formless state. Simply say. "If you can do this for me now please do this. I must know you, embrace you. I must move from faith and belief to personal experience. If you have a form in mind you may ask for that form to manifest.
I will not be giving diksha to you before this part of the yajna as I want some you to see that this awakening is possible without diksha. Some confuse diksha which is a part of an ancient triad of enlightenment consisting of maha surtras, diksha (spiritual initiation) and sadhanas (spiritual practice) with Grace and begin to worship it. or rely too heavily upon it. It can be another way to run from sorrow.
It will be most beneficial for you to see what is possible for you with a simple ancient path. I have given you the pattern-the recipe so to speak so let's try it out and see what happens for you. So many average people like you and I have had this experience simply through seeing and Grace alone. I want you to see and know from experience how this can happen without a lot of struggle, special abilities, ceremonies and so forth. so that you can help others. Later I will give diksha and we will repeat this prayer and meditation and go deeper.
Now we will chant the mantra 7 times and pray for this experience......
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