Meditation

September 19, 2008

Deepak Chopra, in his blog, answered yesterday a question “I had in my heart and mind” after coming back from the Yoga Teacher Training:

Question: During several years my life has been deeply spiritual. Meditation, reading spiritual literature and a constant inner work and process of spiritual and personal development has radically changed both my inner and outer life. I really felt connected to God and my prayers were literally answered in many ways.

Of some reason which I don’t really understand, now I suddenly feel lost and disconnected. It’s as if a very critical and questioning part of me has entered the stage. For example, reading spiritual books was a thing that really engaged me before, now I’m only thinking “from where do they get this, how can they be so sure of what they are saying?” When I pray, I feel like “to what am I praying, what am I doing, why am I doing it?” I feel like I have swallowed a lot of concepts that others have made for me.

I want to discover my own truth, but I don’t even know where to start, and also the critical me says there is no truth. I don’t understand at all why I am here on this earth or how anything works, and the more I’m thinking of these things, the more uncertain I get of everything. Where to start and what to do when you feel totally spiritual lost? Since I’m writing this to you, there must be a part of me that believes there is a way back. Now I wonder if you have any advice on how to find that path again?

Answer: This is a most valuable stage of your spiritual journey — where you shift from an external orientation to authority to your own internal authority and truth. The easiest way to escape this feeling of being lost is to find yourself, and for that you need only be yourself. Before you begin your meditation, remind yourself that this is your opportunity to leave behind all your beliefs, conditionings, concepts and confusing thought processes.

Meditation is a time for you to be that authentic being that you are underneath all the changing roles that you play throughout the day. After meditation, instead of reengaging the mind with spiritual books and wondering why you’re here and who you’re praying to, put your attention on simply being awake and present in the moment without needing to have a definitive judgment on things one way or another. As you consolidate your sense of conscious selfhood, you will find that this quiet Self can be relied upon as an intelligent reference point in all that you do. If you read some book or listen to someone who is supposed to be an authority, you will find that if it has truth and value for you, it will resonate with your deepest Being. If it is not for you, you won’t feel that resonance inside. This is how your inner Self becomes your constant guide on the path.

Love,

Deepak

Therefore let’s meditate, let’s not neglect it – it’s essential!

I guess a part of the reason I felt confused was the fact that I needed to ‘interpret’ many Vedic teachings through my knowledge of Jesus. I think that yoga definitely helps one to develop virtues and mastery over oneself in a way that has been largely neglected at least in the Lutheran Church, which forms my spiritual background.

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Yoga Teacher Training

August 18, 2008

 

“Nature is always orchestrating situations around us to bring about self-realization.” – Deepak Chopra

 

My diary during my Yoga Teacher Training in Aluenda, Spain:

I’m at the moment participating in this intensive yoga teacher training near Madrid. The scenery is beautiful, people are friendly, activities are interesting and the food is good. 

Our Daily Schedule is following:

  • 5.30am Wake-up
  • 6am Satsang (Meditation, chanting, lecture)
  • 8am Asanas, pranayama
  • 10am Brunch
  • 11am Karma yoga
  • 12noon Bhagavad Gita or Chanting class
  • 2pm Main lecture
  • 4pm Asanas, pranayama
  • 6pm Dinner
  • 8pm Satsang (Meditation, chanting, lecture)
More to follow…
***
My tummy failed me yesterday… I had to leave in the middle of morning meditation to vomit… I feel better already and I hope that my stomach is stronger now and I won’t have to puke again… 
Another thing is that I have to wake up at 5 with one other girl when all the others can sleep until 5.30… It’s my karma yoga duty to prepare the altar for the morning meditation… And I actually love it. 🙂 I love to wake up when it’s completely quiet. One important part of the yogic life is positive thinking. Yoga says that we can see something good in even the worst things in the world. More to follow…
***
I feel very tired today. All these short nights are starting to have an effect. But the tiredness doesn’t feel bad and it doesn’t feel destructive at all. What I mean by that is that I don’t have any bad habits/thoughts due to it. I don’t have too strong food cravings even if I did buy myself some cheese and dates yesterday when we had a chance to go to a supermarket. 🙂 I feel serenely tired.
 
Actually today’s meditation was the best so far. My legs didn’t get at all tired, therefore, my attention wasn’t in the pain and I was able to transcend a bit. I started hearing these two mantras in my head: “Om namo narayana” which means asking for peace for everyone in the world, and then “Yo soy dicha, yo soy dicha, dicha absoluta, dicha soy yo” which means that I am bliss/joy, I’m the absolute bliss/joy. 🙂 Then I started to feel my soul turning around like in a carousel inside me. That was cool. 🙂 I have to go now to get ready for my Bhagavad Gita lesson.
More to follow…
***
Really busy and tired, busy and tired, busy and tired…
***
The last week of the training has started. I feel great today because I was able to sleep half an hour longer. 🙂 I feel balanced and joyful. What more can you ask for? 😉 La vida es maravillosa!
***
The course has ended and I’m now officially a yoga teacher – yoga siromani! 🙂 I was able to stretch my limbs and limits much more than I thought I could before the course.

Yoga

July 18, 2008

“In the system of ‘Suryanamaskara’ are combined several Yoga postures with rhythmic breathing, rapid movement, sunbathing and prayerful contemplation of the divine power that the sun represents. We are asked to practise this Suryanamaskara facing the morning sun, bathing our whole body in the life-giving rays of the sun, the giver of light, life, joy and warmth of the whole world.” ~Swami Sivananada “Yoga Asanas.”

 

My first introduction to yoga happened during a dance lesson ten years ago. We did some sun salutations to warm up. I enjoyed its calm effectiveness right away. I thought about going to take some lessons but I never got into it before my first teacher drove into my life. I had just come back to Helsinki from Paris and was walking on the street on a sunny summer day when a car pulled up and a man from the car came to talk to me. I of course was suspicious. He told me that he had seen an aura around me and wanted to know if I was interested in yoga. And I was. He gave me a book he had written about yoga and invited me to his yoga school and that marked the beginning of my yoga training.

 

When I became very active in a Christian Fellowship, I wanted to use my skills for the benefit of the churchgoers. However, at the time my idea of “Pray & Stretch” was considered too radical, too akin to other religions.

In 2008 I qualified as a Sivananda Yoga teacher after an intensive training in Aluenda, Zaragoza, Spain. Since then I have given private classes until I started to give group classes in Helsinki, Finland, in January 2010. At the moment I’m practising yoga every day and reading books on yoga and healthy living. Some books on yoga that I have read are Thougt Power, The Perfection of Yoga, El Libro de Yoga and Bhagavad Gita.

“Health is wealth. Peace of mind is happiness. Yoga shows the way.”
– Swami Vishnu-Devananda 1927-1993