Many Paths Home

Path by Tim Green

On this blog, I recommend a specific approach and practices. I’ve seen this as very effective for quality of life, smooth awakening, and a full process including the refined stages. Each of us uniquely combines laws of nature. This is designed specifically to contribute another perspective to the whole. We’re designed to be distinctive variations on a theme. What I recommend will support many paths, but we each have our own journey to take. What will support your journey will also be distinct. Some of us find an obvious line early on. Others need to sample from different approaches, perhaps … Continue Reading…

The Fear of Silence

In the face of fear by Fan D

Occasionally, someone will mention their fear of silence, of self-annihilation, or of spiritual practices. Such dread isn’t a quality of silence. Silence is infinite, eternal and deeply peaceful. Alive silence is also blissful. However, that deep settledness we get in silence gives the body deep rest. That’s an opportunity for healing that can trigger purification. One type of purification is bringing old, incomplete emotions to the surface like fear. This is actually desirable. If we’re willing to allow the emotion to arise, it will quickly peak and be resolved. It was just waiting for a chance to complete. Then we’ll … Continue Reading…

Huston’s Yogas

Hindu Wedding Card by Parekh Cards

I’ve been reading Huston Smith’s World Religions for ordination studies. The book is well-written but dominated by recent academic perspectives of the topic. It offers a general overview of the larger faiths, but I wouldn’t base my practices on it. In the Hindu section, Houston outlines the primary Yogas or paths to union.     In brief, these are: – Hatha yoga is the path of the body – Karma yoga is the path of action and perception – Bhakti yoga is the path of devotion – Gyana or jnana yoga is the path of the intellect When I first … Continue Reading…

Global Group Meditation Practice

Blue feather

You’ve probably seen messages from groups organizing occasional large-scale group meditation practice. These have moved on-line where everyone practices at a synchronized time to increase collective coherence. They have repeatedly demonstrated the benefits of this for society in research done since the 1970s. Recently, to help with the current crisis, the TM organization started synced practice every day, twice a day, around the globe. This has the potential to enhance both your own practice and to add yours to the collective soothing. Simply start your practice at the times for your area or a nearby time zone. For times in … Continue Reading…

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A Devotional Practice

Namaste by Pretty Pixels

I’ve been a little remiss here. I write extensively about the importance of transcending. It is a foundational practice to establish true Yoga and develop enlightenment. But I’ve talked much less about the role of devotion. Some people are on a Bhakti or devotional path. But all of us need some of that, in whatever form suits us. This is because of the key role the heart takes in the evolutionary process. Without that, our life is dry and flat – even if we’re able to realize the Self. A constrained heart limits our potential and the stages that can … Continue Reading…

Client Breakthrough Summit

Summit

Georgette Star MA, D.Min. invited me to speak on the Client Breakthrough Summit, an on-line conference for practitioners, coaches, and healers. The conference is to help practitioners upgrade their knowledge to further support their clients. The conference has 4 tracks, one of which is on understanding the awakening process. Georgette felt I could bring a bigger picture to the subject and can talk about the role healing plays too. It is an interview format. Many people in this arena have a more generalized understanding of spiritual unfoldment. We may think of awakening as a personal goal, an enriched understanding, or … Continue Reading…

The Power of Mantra

Tibetan Buddhist Prayer Wheel by Jay Galvin

Back on Transcending, I explored right mantra for a meditation practice. I’ve also talked about the language of mantra and how they’re often used. Yet there is a much deeper understanding about mantra that’s largely been lost. But first, some background. People talk today about choosing mantras like they’d choose a chocolate. On Transcending I mentioned the importance of proper instruction so the seed is properly planted and we can connect with the tradition of masters for long-term support. To understand this more, we can go back to fundamentals. Consciousness arises from three fundamental Divine qualities: alertness, liveliness and intelligence. … Continue Reading…

Indifference

Indifference by Damian Gadal

“…The unmanifest Being [pure consciousness, Self] coming to direct experience establishes the reality of oneness of eternal existence: That is the pre-eminent path of gaining knowledge (of reality). “There is no effort, no individual inception of the doer on the path to the experience of the unmanifest Being: Being can only be gained by making use of the thinking process without any reference to any existing thing, without meaning. “With complete indifference (during meditation) to the thoughts relating to activities in the relative world, the direct experience of the Self is gained by one who turns away from all distractions. … Continue Reading…

Roles of a Teacher

Teacher by Valerie Everett

By role of a teacher here, I mean the role they play in our spiritual journey rather than how they may position or present themselves as a teacher. A true teaching emphasizes practical application and direct experience, with the understanding to support that. If it’s just philosophy, it may only make the mind stronger. Understanding should be to serve the path, not be the path. (Yes, Gyani‘s have an emphasis on understanding, but direct experience is still the core path. Otherwise, it’s just mind.) For someone to have the role of a spiritual teacher for us, there is what I … Continue Reading…

Wu Wei or Flow

Wu Wei by Cea

I ran into a Zen quote the other day and thought about how flow unfolds. But first, some background. I’ve only studied a bit of Zen in my time, so am not an expert. But the principles are universal. Zen is a branch of Buddhism that was strongly influenced by Taoism. The word Zen was originally derived from the Yoga term Dhyana (meditation) but the practices now differ greatly from the original Yoga. The focus of Zen is on direct experience rather than book learning. One influence from Taoism (the Way) has been the idea of Wu Wei. Wu Wei … Continue Reading…

Divisions

Division by Candi

In the unfolding of creation, awareness becomes self-aware in every layer. This leads to spaces within spaces as the process steps forward into the world of form and phenomena. Like a set of Russian dolls, only the outer layers are progressively more subtle and diffuse. However, this process gets exaggerated by the sense of separation, of being a distinct individual. It’s natural to recognize our distinctions from others. It’s part of our maturation as a person and the function of the intellect. However, when that is all we recognize as self, it leads to greater division and the mayiya mala, … Continue Reading…

Yoga and Meditation

Meditation on Water by Mario

I’ve described how important transcending was for awakening here. But let’s explore a bigger context. The Yoga Sutra describes 8 “limbs” or approaches to gain Yoga or union and discover our true nature. The first two limbs are the Yama and Niyama, approaches to daily life like non-violence, spiritual study, and honesty. The next five are practiced together to create Raja or Royal Yoga, a path that combines aspects of the other yogas or paths. The result of these 5 is the last limb, Samadhi, when we step into Yoga. Because some of these are done sequentially, the limbs are … Continue Reading…