2005 May

Awaken your spiritual heart
An experience of Kundalini
Wash off your sins here
The Buddha’s attitude to miracles
Swami Adi Shanarcharya
12 Sun Mantras
No Greater Love

Selected Articles

Message from the Master
A son and his father were walking in the mountains. Suddenly, the boy fell and hurt himself. While he was screaming in pain, he heard a voice repeating his scream somewhere in the mountains, “AAAaaahhhhh!” Curious, he yelled out, “Who are you?” and received an answer, “Who are you?” Angered at this response, he screamed, “Coward!” only to receive the answer of “Coward” back. Looking at his father, he asked him, “What’s going on?”

His father smiled and said, “My son, pay attention,” and he screamed to the mountain, “I admire you!” The voice answered, “I admire you”. Again the man shouted, “You are a champion!” and the voice repeated after him, “You are a champion!”

The boy was surprised but did not understand until his father explained: “People call that an ECHO, but what it really is, is LIFE. It gives you back everything you say or do.” Our life is simply a reflection of our actions. If you want more love in the world, create more love in your heart. If you want more competence in your team, improve your own competence. This relationship applies to everything, in all aspects of life. Life will give you back everything you have given it.

Your life is not a coincidence. It is a reflection of You.

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Awaken Your Spiritual Heart
by Swami Shankarananda

Your spiritual heart is well and alive with your Self. This spiritual heart, when luminous, represents your inner goodness - this is your most compassionate and caring person - You. This heart I talk about is genuine, so cherish it. It is the real aspect of yourself. It is the Absolute Reality.

This is your true nature, your highest self, your most Knowledgeable self. ‘I’ is actually the God within you. This is who you truly are - your aspiration in this life.

Due to the circumstances around you, such as challenges, changes, uncertainties and insecurities, you need to awaken your spiritual heart. This is certainly becoming increasingly important in the daily lives of everyone and so it should be with yours. Remember, every adventure in your life is part of your spiritual journey, be it physical, mental emotional, psychological or spiritual. Now is the right time to awaken your spiritual heart by making Divine connections with others around you and far away from you. Do this with your families, partners, colleagues, neighbours, society, area of residence - with everything in this world.

Awakening the spiritual heart is about relationships. The relationship you have with yourself, firstly, and then your relationships with others, the world around you and higher levels of energy. You should agree that, when your relationships are good, you feel good, but when your relationships are bad, you feel bad. So accept that you all need each other. You need to be connected and to feel Love.

You are part of a universal web of light (of the Supreme). You are never disconnected from this fact, but sometimes in your life you ‘feel’ disconnected from this Pure Know-ledge of your place in the great web. Due to this feeling, you experience intense feelings of loneliness but by awakening your Spiritual Heart, you will start your journey back home.

This loneliness I talk about is what Mother Teresa meant when she said, “the biggest problem facing the world today is not people dying in the streets of Calcutta, and not inflation, but spiritual deprivation ... this feeling of emptiness associated with feeling separated from God and from all sisters and brothers on planet earth. Loneliness is like the leprosy of the West”.

Do not suffer the leprosy of the West to find your spiritual heart. Awaken it yourself and start your journey.

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The Buddha’s Attitude to Miracles

When the Buddha was once living at Nalanda in the Pavarika Grove, a man by the name of Kevaddha went up to the Buddha, paid homage to Him and said, “Lord, Nalanda is a successful city. The people living in Nalanda are prosperous, and they have confidence in the Blessed One. Lord, it would be good if the Blessed One appointed a Bhikkhu to work a marvel of super-normal power, so that the people of Nalanda might become much more confident in the Blessed One.”

The Buddha replied, “Kevaddha, I do not teach the Law of Bhikkhus in that way.” The Buddha gave the same reply when the question was put to Him the second and third time. After the third question, the Buddha replied that there were three kinds of supernormal marvels: The first was the marvel of supernormal power to appear as many persons, to pass through walls, to fly through the air or walk on water. These are physical actions that ordinary people cannot perform; the second was the supernormal power to read other people’s minds; and the third was the supernormal power to be able to guide people according to their mental development, for their own good, using suitable methods to fit these people.

The first two supernormal powers, if displayed for their own sake in order to impress people, are no different from the performance of magicians. A Bhikkhu who practices such worldly miracles is a source of shame, humiliation and disgust. Such actions may impress and win converts and followers, but they do not bring Enlightenment to help them put an end to suffering. The third kind of super-normal power, though which may be called a ‘miracle’, helps people to get rid of suffering. This is the only supernormal power that is fit to be practised.

The only miracles that should be performed are these: when you see a man full of passion, craving and greed and you teach him to be free from that passion, craving and greed; when you see a man who is a slave to hatred and anger and you use your powers to help him control his hatred and anger; when you come across a man who is ignorant and who cannot see the true nature of the world (everything in this world is impermanent, sorrowful and egoless) and you use your powers to help him overcome his ignorance. These are worthy ‘miracles’ you can perform.

This advice to Kevaddha was also ex-tended to the Vinaya rules which for-bid monks from performing miracles to impress people and gain converts, without helping them to be enlightened. This was clear in the case of Pindola. Arahant Pindola Bharadwaja was famous for miraculous psy-chic powers. A rich man wanting this monk to prove his psychic powers, placed a beautiful bowl at the top of a high place and challenged any holy man to get the bowl down. If he could do it, he could keep the bowl.

Pindola Bharadwaja flew up and took the bowl down easily. This was also done to prove to the rich man that there are saints in the world, a fact which the rich man did not believe. When the Buddha came to know about this incident, He called Pindola Bharadwaja to bring his bowl. He broke the bowl into pieces in front of a large gathering of Bhikkhus, saying, “I am displeased about the demonstration of your psychic powers. You must never show off your powers just to impress simple, ignorant people!”

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No Greater Love
by Mother Teresa
Published by New World Library
ISBN 1-57731-006-3

One of the world’s most recognised and loved spiritual leaders, Mother Teresa has inspired millions with her extra-ordinary example of compassionate and selfless work for the poor, the ill and the outcast. Mother Teresa became known to the world for her selfless work with the ‘poorest of the poor’ in Calcutta, India. Born in 1910 in Skopje, now the capital of Macedonia, Mother Teresa began her novitiate in India in 1928. Since its inception in 1950, her order, the Missionaries of Charity, has opened more than 500 centres around the world to help the dying and the destitute. Mother Teresa is the recipient of many of the world’s most prestigious humanitarian awards, including the United States’ Medal of Freedom, the United Nations’ Albert Schewitzer Prize and the Nobel Peace Prize.

Considered by many to be a living saint, she has been a steadfast voice of love and faith, providing immeasurable kindness and guidance to the world’s down-trodden. No Greater Love is the essential wisdom of Mother Teresa - the most accessible and inspirational collection of her teachings ever published. This definitive volume features Mother Teresa on love, prayer, giving, service, poverty, forgiveness, Jesus, and more. It ends with an up-to-date biography and a revealing conversation with Mother Teresa about the specific challenges and joys present in her work with the poor and the dying.

No Greater Love is a passionate testament to Mother Teresa’s deep hope and abiding faith in God and the world. It will bring readers into the heart of this remarkable woman, showing Mother Teresa’s revolutionary vision of Christianity in its graceful, poetic simplicity. Through her own words, No Greater Love celebrates the life and work of one of the greatest humanitarians of our time.

“Suffering is but a sign that you have come so close to Christ, He can actually kiss you.” (Mother Teresa)

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From Within and Beyond

by Swami Narayani

“Ask and it shall be given; seek, and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you. For everyone that asketh, receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened.” (Jesus Christ)

To begin your spiritual path, YOU must make the first move. YOU must get into the Kingdom. You will never get there without self effort. Self-effort is the only thing that will take you to the goal. YOU have to seek, YOU have to find. YOU have to knock. In other words, it doesn’t matter HOW, but for God’s sake DO IT. Go IN. Knock on the door. It is urgent, because there is no other way. If you don’t do it, who is going to do it for you? Nobody. You have been given a mouth and you have been given a throat, with which to eat. Somebody can put the food in your mouth, but you still have to swallow. “I am here,” He says. “All you have to do is to make the effort. I am standing, My arms are open. Please walk towards Me.” But we are too busy. “I am too busy.” Those words are said day after day. Busy doing what? Faffing with the tinsel at the bazaar.

The words of Jesus are positive and definite. Why do we not believe him? Or is it that we do not want to give up the tinsel?

If that is so, then we’ll always be unhappy - unfulfilled.