2006 April


Editorial + This Journey + Where’s Your Accelerator? + Swami Replies + Bhujanga Prana Vayu Mudra Asana + Lavender Essence + Agate + Colour Therapy Part 1 + Who is Babaji? + Thought is everything + Jesus Lived in India + Celebrating Easter + GitaScendence + Jnana Yoga + Inspiration

Selected Articles


Namaste all.
I’m glad to say that my harsh words of last month’s newsletter incited at least some response in readers. Thank you to those who responded. It is sad that one has to be so reprimanding in order for the interest of readers to surface. A number of letters were received from readers, two of which have been included in this issue. One thing that did surface was the impression that I required gratification for the compilation of Transcendence. This was not the aim of my previous editorial. What we are looking for is active participation of readers in the content of the newsletter. This is not our newsletter, it is yours and we want to hear what you thought of a prayer or discourse. I thoroughly enjoy putting Transcendence together and will do whatever I can to keep it going. In fact, it is such fun that I want others to share in this fun by participating in its compilation. Transcendence is for everyone and should not be made up of topics chosen only by myself and a few other selected contributors. We would like to know what you, the readers, want to learn regarding your spirituality. So, please, keep up the communication with me via email.

This month we have a number of interesting articles. A brief life-story of Mahavatar Babaji is covered by our Feature slot, with an article on Celebrating Easter which includes the symbolism behind the Crucifixion of Christ. We learn about agate, lavender essence and Jnana Yoga, while Swami Murugesu explains why Thought is Everything. The first part of a two-part series on Colour Therapy is included and Nareen Mahabeer gives us her account of the December trip to Sri Lanka with Guruji. The crossword puzzle has not yet been reintroduced as we are still thinking about, but there is a new inclusion of a monthly cartoon by Victoria, on Guruji’s instruction. Enjoy! The April/May issue of Renaissance magazine will contain an article on The Guru Enigma by Swami Shankarananda, so make sure you get yourself a copy.

In Love and Service Always,

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Message from the Master
This Journey

This journey that most of you believe is not serious, is actually very important in this life. This is your last chance to take the journey. You might not be given this opportunity in the next. You know that this journey is actually a divine preparation for your next life time. Here you are given a chance to become divine. The chances are you might not have choices in the next life. Do not let the ocean of your spirituality be dried up by requirements of your desires, anger, greed, hate and lust.

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Who is Babaji Nagaraj?

In 1946, Paramahans Yogananda, one of modern India’s greatest Yogis, revealed in His classic Autobiography of a Yogi, the existence of a Christ-like saint, an immortal yogi, Mahavatar Babaji. Yogananda related how Babaji had for centuries lived in the Himalayas, guiding many spiritual teachers at a distance, usually without their even knowing it.

Babaji is a great siddha, one who has overcome ordinary human limitations, and who works silently behind the scenes for the spiritual evolution of all humanity. Paramahansa Yogananda also revealed that it was Babaji who taught a powerful series of yogic techniques, known as Kriya Yoga, to lahiri Mahasaya, around 1861, and who subsequently initiated many others, including Yogananda’s own Christ-like guru, Sri Yukteswar, some 115 years ago. Yogananda spent ten years with hsi guru before Babaji himself appeared to him and directed him to bring thesacred science of Kriya to the West. Yogananda fulfilled this sacred mission from 1920 to 1952, when he left his body and attained the yogic state of mahasamadhi.

Babaji was given the name Nagaraj, whcih means ‘serpent king’, referring to kundalini, our great divine potential power and consciousness. He was born on the 30th day of November 203AD, in a small coastal village now known as Parangipettai, in Tamil Nadu, India, near where the Cauvery River flows into the Indian Ocean. His birth coincided with the ascendancy (nakshatra) of the star of Rohini, under which Krishna was also born. The birth took place during the celebration of Kartikai Deepam, the Festival of Lights, the night before the new moon during the Tamil month of Kartikai. His parents were Nambudri Brahmins who had immigrated there from the Malabar coast on the western side of South India. His father was the priest in the Shiva temple of this village, which is today a temple dedicated to Muruga, Shiva’s son.

At the age of 5, Nagaraj was kidnapped by a trader and taken as a slave to what is today Calcutta. A rich merchant purchased him, only to give him his freedom. He joined a small band of wondering monks, and with them became learned in the sacred religious and philosophical literature of India. However, he was not satisfied. Hearing of the existence of a great siddha, or perfected master, named Agastyar, in the south, he made a pilgrimage to the sacred temple of Katirgama, near the southernmost tip of Sri Lanka, the large island just south of peninsular India. There he met a disciple of Agastyar, whose name was Boganathar. he studied dhyana, or meditation, intensively and Siddhantham, the philosophy of the Siddhas, with Boganathar for four years.

At the age of 15, Boganathar sent him to his own guru, the legendary Agastyar, who was know to be living near to Courtrallam, in Tamil Nadu. After performing intensive yogic practices at Courtrallam for 48 days, Agastyar revealed himself, and initiated him into Kriya Kundalini Pranayama, a powerful breathing technique. He directed the boy Nagaraj to go to Badrinath, high in the Himalayas, and to practice all that he had learned, intensively, to become a "siddha." Over the next 18 months, Nagaraj lived alone in a cave practicing the yogic techniques which Boganathar and Agastyar has taught him. In so doing, he surrendered his ego, all the way down to the level of the cells in his body, to the Divine, which descended into him. He became a siddha, one who has surrendered to the power and consciousness of the Divine! His body was no longer subject to the ravages of disease and death. Transformed, as a Maha or great siddha, he dedicated himself to the upliftment of suffering humanity.

During the 19th century Madame Blavatsky, the founder of the Theosophical Society, identified him as the Matreiya, the living Buddha, or World Teacher for the coming era, described in C.W. Leadbetter's "Masters and the Path." In 1861, Babaji revived Kriya Yoga, which Patanjali refers to in his famous "Yoga-Sutras." Patanjali wrote this classic text of yoga about the 3rd century A.D. In it he defines Kriya Yoga in II.1 as "constant practice (particularly by the cultivation of detachment), self-study and devotion to the Lord." However, along with what Patanjali described as Kriya Yoga, Babaji added the teachings of the tantra, which includes the cultivation of "kundalini," the great potential power and consciousness, through the use of breathing, mantras and devotional practices. His modern synthesis of "Kriya Yoga," includes a rich variety of techniques.

During a six month period in 1954, at his ashram near Badrinath, in the Garwhal Himalayas, Babaji initiated S.A.A. Ramaiah into a complete system of 144 Kriyas, or practical techniques, involving postures, breathing, meditation, mantras and devotional techniques. The latter blossomed as a yogi, and began a worldwide mission to bring this system, referred to as "Babaji`s Kriya Yoga" to thousands of aspirants. In 1970 to 1971 he initiated the author, M. Govindan, into all 144 Kriyas. M. Govindan practiced these intensively on the average for eight hours per day for 18 years under Yogi Ramaiah's guidance in India, the USA and Canada. In 1983, Yogi Ramaiah gave him rigorous conditions to fulfill to begin initiating others. After fulfilling these, Babaji himself appeared to Govindan in 1988 and directed him to go and teach His Kriya Yoga to others.

In South India, Babaji has been preparing, since 1942, two souls for the task of disseminating his Kriya Yoga: S.A.A. Ramaiah, a graduate student in geology at the University of Madras, and V.T. Neelakantan, a famous journalist and close student of Annie Besant, president of the Theosophical Society and mentor of Krishnamurti. Babaji appeared to each of them independently and then brought them together in order to work for his Mission. In 1952 and 1953, Babaji dictated three books to V.T. Neelakantan: The Voice of Babaji and Mysticism Unlocked, Babaji’s Masterkey to All Ills, and Babaji’s Death of Death. Babaji revealed to them his origins, his tradition, and his Kriya Yoga. They founded on October 17, 1952, at the request of Babaji, a new organisation, Kriya Babaji Sangah, dedicated to the teaching of Babaji’s Kriya Yoga. The books created a sensation at the time of their publication and distribution throughout India. The Self Realization Fellowship attempted to have them and the Kriya Babaji Sangah suppressed and it took the intervention of the then Prime Minister of India, Pandit Nehru, who was a friend of V.T. Neelakantan, to end their efforts. In 2003, Babaji’s Kriya Yoga Order of Acharyas reprinted the three books in one volume called The Voice of Babaji.

Babaji has continued to guide and inspire some of history`s greatest saints and many spiritual teachers, in the fulfillment of their mission. These include Adi Shankaracharya, the great 9th century A.D. reformer of Hinduism, and Kabir, the 15th century saint beloved by both the Hindus and Muslims. Both are said to have been personally initiated by Babaji, and refer to him in their writings.

Maintaining the remarkable appearance of a youth of about 16 years of age, Babaji gradually reveals himself to his devotees and disciples, capturing their hearts in various types of personal devotional relationships in which he guides them in their development.

Fortunately, Babaji has at times come out from behind the veils of anonymity which he finds so useful for his work. Babaji has appeared to Swami Satyaswarananda in the Kumaon Hills of the Himalayas, in the early 1970`s and given him the assignment of translating and publishing the writings of Lahiri Mahasaya. This he has done in a series, the "Sanskrit Classics," from his home in San Diego, California. Shibendu Lahiri, one of the great-grandsons of Lahiri Mahasaya, also claims to have been visited by Babaji, at his home, in the late 1980's. Babaji is said to have blessed him in his efforts to teach Kriya Yoga all over the world. Babaji gave his "darshan" on the vital plane to the author, M. Govindan, in October 1999, on two occasions. This occurred 30 kilometers north of Badrinath, at an altitude of nearly 5,000 metres, at the source of the Alakananta River. During these visitations, Babaji appeared as a radiant youth, with copper colored hair, clad in a simple white "dhoti" or waist cloth, and allowed Govindan to touch his feet.

One cannot really know who Babaji is, or even begin to conceive of his grandeur, without appreciating the culture of the Siddhas from which he has emerged. Rather than seeking an other worldly escape in some heaven, after realizing the presence of the Divine within, the Siddhas sought to surrender their entire being to It, and to allow It to manifest at all levels. They sought a complete transformation of our human nature.

Babaji manifests what Sri Aurobindo referred to and aspired to for all humanity: "the supramental transformation" of our human nature, perhaps the next step in our evolutionary process. As such, he is not our savior. Nor is he the founder of some religion. He does not seek our adulation or even our recognition. Like all of the Siddhas, he has surrendered completely to the Supreme Being, the Supreme Abstraction, and as a divine instrument, brings down into this murky world the clear light of consciousness, unconditional joy and supreme peace. May everyone achieve this greatest human potential.

Bibliography: http://www.babaji.ca/

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Celebrating Easter

The Crucifixion and the Cross of Christ are as old as humanity itself. Both are symbols of the eternal sacrifice of God as He immerses Himself in the form aspect of nature and thus becomes God immanent as well as God Transcendent.

Christ must be recognised, first of all in the cosmic sense as the cosmic Christ has existed from all eternity. This cosmic Christ is divinity, or spirit, crucified in space. He personifies the immolation or sacrifice of spirit upon the cross of matter, of form or substance, in order that all divine forms, including the human, may live. This has ever been recognised by the so-called pagan faiths. If the symbolism of the cross is traced far back, it will be found that it antedates Christianity by thousands of years and that, finally, the four arms of the cross will be seen to drop away, leaving only the picture of the living Heavenly Man, with His arms outspread in space. North, South, East and West, stands the Cosmic Christ upon which is called the ‘fixed cross of the heavens’. Upon this cross, God is eternally crucified.

It is interesting to note that Easter day is always decided astronomically. These facts warrant the most careful consideration. The Christ of history passed through the gates of death for us. The Cosmic Christ is still dying upon the Cross of Matter. There he hangs fixed until the last weary pilgrim shall find his way home. The planetary Christ, the life of the four kingdoms of nature, has been crucified on the four arms of the planetary Cross down the ages. But the end of this period of crucifixion is close upon us. Mankind can descend from the cross as Christ did, and enter into the Kingdom of God, a living spirit. The sons of God are ready to be manifested, today as ever before. Towards this glorification of God we are all moving. Some of the sons of men have already achieved, through the realisation of their divinity.

Salvation is not primarily concerned with sin. Sin is a symptom of a condition and when man is ‘truly saved’ that condition is offset, and with it the incidental sinful nature. It was this that Christ came to do - to show us the nature of the ‘saved life’; to demonstrate to us the quality of the eternal Self, which is in every man; thi sis the lesson of the Crucifixion and the Resurrection: the lower nature must die in order that the higher may be manifested, and the eternal immortal soul in every man must rise form the tomb of matter. We have made the crucifixion a tragedy, whereas the real tragedy was our failure to recognise its true significance. The important point is not Christ’s death, though that was climactic in the evolutionary process, but the subsequent resurrection, symbolising as it did the formation and the precipitation upon Earth of a new kingdom in which men and all forms would be free form death - a kingdom of which the Man released from the Cross should be the symbol.

Today it is the risen Christ who is emerging into the forefront of men’s consciousness, and because of this we are on our way towards a period of greater spirituality and a truer expression of religion than at any other time in the history of man. Christ came to show us that love was the motivating power of the universe. He suffered and died because He loved and cared enough for human beings to demonstrate to them the Way to the mount of Transfiguration, and on to the agony of the Crucifixion - if they are to share in the life of humanity and become, in their turn, saviours of their fellow men.

Only when we have mastered the significance of service and sacrifice, can the act of immortality and its true meaning be revealed to us. Christ died and rose again because He was divinity immanent in a human body. Through the process of evolution and initiation He demonstrated to us the meaning and purpose of the divine life present in Him and in us all. Because Christ was human, He rose again. Because He was also divine, He rose again and in the enacting of the drama of resurrection, He revealed to us that great concept of the continuity of unfoldment which it has ever been the task of the Mysteries of all time to reveal. Christ has risen, and by His Resurrection proved that humanity had in it the seed of life, and that there was no death for the man who could follow in the footsteps of the Master.

Excerpt from From Bethlehem to Calvary by AA Bailey, Lucis Press

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Jnana Yoga :The path of knowledge
by Suren Pillay

Masters have claimed that the divinity of man exists eternally. In the holy scriptures we find ample evidence that the soul cannot be subjected to any external condition, that being the case, the wisdom of our saints lies in their ability to discriminate perfectly between matter and spirit. Their discrimination is continuous, and all their actions are thus in perfect harmony with the cosmos and nature. To succeed in spiritual life it thus seems plausible to conclude that a high level of discrimination will be required by the aspirant to attain God realization. The aspiring devotee passes through numerous obstacles and battles across the sea of delusion and doubt, in the hope of attaining final liberation from the cycle of births and deaths. In his unending quest for spiritual perfection God gives him benediction in the form a Guru preceptor, whose task it is to clear the aspirant’s mind of spiritual ignorance and instill within him the peace loving qualities of the soul.

For such an aspirant, the Guru is of real benefit, for the master is aware of the disciples obstacles in attaining realization of the infinite. The master slowly guides the disciple, whose mind is still tainted with gross materialistic vibrations, to the spiritual realm by enhancing his already good qualities and slowly inhibiting his bad traits. By continuous association with the Guru the disciple gains spiritual magnetism of the master and the negative subconscious impressions in the mind of the aspirant start to exert a weaker influence in the disciple’s train of thought.

In addition to association with the Guru, the disciple should also increase his powers of discrimination by reading spiritual books written by God realized sages of our time. Mere speculation of scriptural injunctions will not help us attain God, deep contemplation however on the scriptures or words written by sages will however inspire deep discrimination in the disciple. The Bhagavad Gita if contemplated upon everyday will produce wonderful powers of reason in every day life.

The path of knowledge known as Jnana yoga involves devoted study of scriptural injunctions and conscious application of spiritual principals in daily life. This path is indeed difficult and unlikely to give one realization without some combination of meditation, bhakti (devotion) or selfless action. It is however a vital asset in bringing the devotee to high levels of discrimination when he is in need of it. Disciples are surrounded by temptations at every corner of life, however by remembering the words of God everyday, righteous action is evermore nearer.

My message to you this month fellow children of Gayathri is to practice Jnana yoga. Read spiritual books, listen to discourses by the Guru, and be in the company of the Guru as far as possible. This yoga will give you confidence, knowledge and discrimination on the path of self realization. As you read the words of a God-inspired sage his words will no doubt produce a deep impact in your mind, and you will no doubt gain some of his spiritual magnetism embedded in his words. You will boldly march along the path and inspire others along the path as well, you will be of great benefit to society and you will become a worthy citizen in the kingdom of God!

To subscribe to a set of 2006 Transcendence issues, email Deepak.Folly@uec.co.za