Sunday, March 5, 2017

Tests of the Path

Greetings everyone... Had been busy for a while, still am.. Was just peeping on FB and found some posts by few who are disillusioned by the experiences of others.

Though i did not want to give any gyan on this, but still thought would write a few things for those who are confused, sad, depressed or bewildered by the way so-called freedom of speech or freewill sharings keep floating around the social media.

It's close to 8 years that i follow my Guru, though before i was an avid reader, an explorer, a curious one. i have traveled many paths before, almost visited every center of all paths that you can name of. i learnt a lot and still do respect every Master and every path for they are all working so wonderfully and divinely for uplifting souls to the Supreme. But just that i decided to follow just one path and Guru till my last breath not because it is already written in the great scriptures the need to follow a Master faithfully but just because of the sheer love of settling down to learn something seriously. 

 But this decision of following one gives not just the necessary bulls-eye focus but also sincerity to the spiritual path and journey. It's like you fall in love once. When you marry, the beauty and prosperity of that relationship is only if you are loyal to the partner. Though viewing another not heavens or hell may broke loose and it may still be okay and acceptable in the modern times, but you still know deep down in your heart that something is not right. Commitment will lack because no matter how much ever experienced or advanced you feel you are still it will lurk you somewhere, still it will confuse you somewhere, it will still leave you incomplete. It is not the question of whether the spouse is beautiful or the other one, but a matter of integrity, bond and commitment..

That's what life is always about, you can't travel in two boats at one time, you can't study two subjects at one time, you can't watch two movies at one time, Though in Kaliyuga everything is considered fine and okay and maybe even technology might make such things possible, but let it not be forgotten that the very basis on which this ancient tradition stands upon are the emotions in the tradition or lineage.

So, what i noticed around and what i wish to say is that follow anyone - any, any one - follow any, any one path, for all are righteous and divine but follow one. Also, when following one never pass judgments on the other - be it Guru or path or religion. Though it might all seem like "the thing" of today, it is simply not polite and nice on the path of Siddhas.

Also, wish to add that this path, as i always mention, is not easy, it will open up many aspects of our own deeper selves that we may not want to honestly see, to introspect. The Guru burns the ego self, and sometimes ego is visible to us, sometimes the subtle ego is not, but the Guru sees everything and it is His work to burn off every bit completely and He will continue. i have seen the Master mercilessly burning it all and many times people flee. They cannot withstand the heat. They forget He is not here to flatter or keep one tossed in the comforts of a lofty cradle in the name of unconditional love. Unconditional love is that love that sees beyond all this - unjustly and is not, as it is widely misunderstood, love that accepts and tolerates anything and everything. The Guru will not fall for praise or nice words or foul words, He will simply do what He has to do. So flattery has never pleased a Guru nor will cribbing or tantrums affect Him. He will do what He has to. It is very difficult to understand Him with the logic mind that asks explanations.

i have read how Guru can go to any extent to teach His disciples, sometimes even to the extent of throwing one out. i not just read such real stories, but also heard it from Yogis, who were once as disciples were asked by their Guru to leave. Without a word they took it as their Guru aagya for they believed in the Param Vakayam of the Guru Vakyam. They shared how they then practiced sadhna with just a small photo of their Guru and later reunited with them. Most of the time, Gurus become stern because they wish to teach something or it is after certain efforts they make which the disciple fail to understand. Eklavya's story is a perfect match to this. To a committed one, it does not matter what externally happens, but all that matters is how true the love has been. Many times Masters test their disciples in multiple ways, sometimes in ways that feel as "injustice" but it is upto the power of loyalty and true love in the heart of the student that wins or loses the test. Many things just mean "one is not ready yet" and till one is ready, the Master will fry, even if it means losing out a lifetime for the path is not easy, nor is the mind ready to easily shed the comforts of the mind and body. The ego will raise it's hood and give multiple reasons, excuses, blames, and all sorts of things to justify how one feels. It is not the fault of the path that the times of the current days are too modernized that patience and faith run out at a drop of a hat, because expectations are too conditional. And that is not how the path works.

Anyways, i think i just shared too much but it is just out of love and care for the ones for whom the hush of the social media cause inner conflicts or confusion or even sadness. It is important to remember that we live in a world of good and evil. The battle of light and dark is always on. i often come across situations or people, often unknowingly may not resonate to the highest truth and purity but believe to be doing so, for we live in times of a so-called advanced world, where everything is considered okay. Thus, looking at the extremities of today's lifestyle and an okay attitude towards compromises in spiritual values, it becomes a good reason to ignore the overloads of social media dramas, because then, if you are able to see clearly, you would know from where it is all coming from - comes from an individual's own inner conflicts, insecurities, or probably even the tough phases that they are themselves going through, all of it which is okay to ignore because it is still someone else's stories, someone's karmas. i personally believe that posting personal stories on social media has no definite purpose other than wanting to attract attention. But at the same time, there is a lot of love and good feelings that goes towards them also because somewhere their hearts also are having a tough time. It is not that they are wrong or bad, it is just that their pain and hurts are true to them, they feel it too. So, wearing their shoes it also doesn't really feel good, and that is why they do not need criticism or hardness, but just love and blessings. All that can be done is to pray for their well being and that they receive all that is for their highest good.

But regarding judging masters :) never do that in any circumstances.. never judge any, any masters. i have seen Baba flaring up if someone speaks ill of any Master. It is simply isn't right. Not to forget the Guru Dosha that one can be prone to when he or she bad-mouths or does anything displeasing to their own Guru or to any Master. Well, if it is a free will of an individual so be it, but was just wanting to say that in the human opportunity of liberating oneself, why unnecessarily get entangled in such things? There is so much work to do for the self-growth and for the world.

Let me end this with a real story that happened a few years ago.

In the place i was born and brought up (Belgaum), there lived an Avdhoot who used to sit in his house that had a large verandah. People flocked to have his darshan and few just longed for His glance to fall upon them. They did everything to get his attention. But he was totally unpredictable. He would at times be okay with people around Him and at times flare up. Most of them kept distance because He would even beat them up or abuse them. But still people flocked for HIs darshan for they knew well He had something that they could receive. He did many leelas, like all Masters do. He had his own ways to keep people away, again, like all Masters do :)One morning when people flocked to have His darshan, but today they found him sitting absorbed in samadhi but noticed that He had done something unusual. He was sitting inside the house but all over the large verandah He had spread rice. For this reason, not one could reach Him because if they did, they had to step on the rice and walk over it to reach Him. In the South a great reverence is given to rice as Maa Annapoorneshwari and thus no-one dared to step on it. They had their darshans from far and commented how wise He was to do this trick to not let the crowd disturb Him. At that moment, one man walked through the streets desperately seeking darshan of His Master, made his way through the crowd, jumped on the verandah and ran over the rice, and fell at the great one's feet. The Avdhoota opened His eyes in anger and the crowd were angry too at this disrespect the man had given to the rice and to the Master. When the master looked into the eyes of the man that was full of tears and joy, He smiled and put His hand over the man's head and blessed him profusely. The crowd was amazed. The Master sent Him away with lot of love and blessings. The people complained to the Master that he had foiled the Master's intention of spreading rice by walking over it, to which the Avdhoota said, "True that I had spread rice on the verandah but I had spread it because I wanted only the real ones to enter the room. All of you saw this rice and stopped there whereas this man saw nothing but me. In His eyes was only the Master that he failed to notice the rice and ran over it. He was not even scared if I would beat him or abuse him because He yearned for me. If you noticed, he was not even aware of the rice when He left and that is because in his eyes He sees only His master and nothing else."

Divine Love and Light 

Friday, January 13, 2017

What's in my name?

Long time... i returned to my blog, my passion of writing my heart out, sing my heart out, smile my heart out :)

It's been about two years i added a surname to my name or you can call self-christened myself. Those days very very few people added the name Shivanand to their name. After that i read and heard and saw many times the different definitions given for one choosing to add their Guru or lineage's name. Call it a fancy or a "the thing" going on, i was but sure that whatever reasons one did, that heart must surely be carrying a lot of love.

For me it was not a "one fine morning decision", it was a very, very personal thing. i had previously also thought many times to add the name of my Guru, but something pulled me back. i would like to share what was that. It was certainly not because i lived in the vicinity of my Guru. I have been around Him for two years before that too.

The path of truth and love and light is not as easy as it's spelling or pronunciation. Since i time i came in the vicinity of the Siddha master, i have been battered and bruised, because He is fire that burns all unwanted stuff in you. Easier said than done, there were many moments i dangled in thin air undecided. It is not that your karmas say bye bye to you when you walk to your Guru. You carry them with you. The only difference is that you are aware now of its effects. The struggle was on. Struggle of the ego, struggle of the conditionings, struggle of impulsions, and phew... so much. Now where on earth would one even think of a name or sirname at such times. When everything within and without is undergoing a trashing. A trashing of fight between the dark and light. Life can be simple but we choose to make it difficult not because we want it to be difficult but because we feel that being difficult is the easier way out. So when the first heavy round of battles were found between my dark forces and the Guru's forces of light, i fled. i fled Him. So when you flee from something, how can you even fix that something's name with your name. But then, that was a part of the game too. And when the sun shone one morning, i realized why my soul was fleeing.

It was because of COMMITMENT. Lack of commitment was the nailed reason. And then i kept looking at all the past reels of my life as a failed student. But in that review, i saw something very beautiful. i saw how He was just what He was. The unconditional love that He preached was not false. Irrespective of what i thought and what i did or what i decided, He had just divine love, light and prayers. There was something very subtle about Him that could never be seen through the physical eyes of His red-robed human embodiment. Whenever i saw that divinity and wanted to exclaim, He would brush it away and act even more human, sometime more brutal. It seemed like He wanted to prove my eyes and logic right. All i could do was stare in confusion. i was thinking that He
was missing opportunities of proving His divinity to a confused student. There were so many times when i witnessed His divinity and for once wanted Him to confirm that for me, and each time, He made it very clearly feel as though nothing had happened. Determined further when i tried to make something out of it in words, He changed the topic or laughed making me feel foolish. i must say, there are enough elements in this world, enough information and enough talks and happenings in this world to create doubts on your path, but here was a Master who was building it Himself for me. He created situations around me that put me into all kinds of questions and doubts, and when i sought mercy towards His compassionate eyes, He gave me all the love but never answered any questions or doubts. Rather at my every such attempt, He Himself created more, sometimes in mysterious ways and sometimes by Himself becoming a stone. But all through this, i never stopped seeing the wonders He did and beautiful mystical things that kept happening. That was when i realized that it is this quality that charmed not just me but millions. The light that shone through everything and took care of everything yet unwilling to explain.

It was in those hours that i knew i had to commit and keep my eyes glued to that light and not to the dark shadows created by that light. i had eluded commitment like a bunking student. To become a doctor you commit to medical schooling and receive the tittle "Dr." that reminds you all the time of your commitment for the ailing. A military man's tittle glues him to his responsibility. i had decided by then to add the name of my Guru. For me His name, is a commitment. Not an announcement to the world, not any achievement, not any status, it is a crude reminder of a commitment, not just to the path but to the larger causes too, more towards my own soul agenda. It makes me feel more responsible. It makes me feel more connected. It makes me feel one with the Master. It is never a compulsion for me. It's beyond the understanding of logic because it rather sounds funny. A Christian name and a so-called non-Christian name. My Master never bothered about my name or beliefs ever, When He has embraced all religions, will He not embrace those who follow it too? If He can embrace it what big is my embracing His name? i belong to a proud lineage of great Masters, whom i have not followed in any blind belief but through my own deep experiences. When i embrace Shivananda i am also embracing Nityananda, Jagannatha, Gorakshnatha, Matseyendranatha, Digambara. Then it doesn't matter anymore to a doctor whether you tear his qualification certificates or you strip the medals and tittle of an Army man. He will still be a doctor. He will still be a military man. Both in heart and blood.
Shakespeare uncle said it right, "What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." So what if i add a tittle of Shivananda or Nityananda or any name, light is light and light is contagious. So my personal choice to link with a name of light that keeps me reminded of my goal.

So, of all the definitions i saw around when people added the name name of their Guru to their name, my heart only smiled because i knew whatever the viewpoint, knowingly or unknowingly the individual had committed to love and light. To a path of light. A commitment of "allowing" to be guided and trained by the Master in every step of life. i see this as a very, very difficult step because you can confront raised eyebrows and all stuff you can't even imagine. Difficult step because it would make you committed. Then you can't run. You can't fake anything because now will be looked upon as a quality of that. Your expectations would be that. It's like a commitment towards entering a relationship where commitment may still be difficult or indecisive because of the consequences.

For me, adding the name of your Guru or lineage does not necessarily makes one a true Shivananda, but it does make you tread on the path, train yourself, practice, fall and get up and more of all keep going. For me, the name is a motivation. Just like to reach the divine the form is needed in the beginning to reach the formless, the name too is just a beginning of that sacred ritual. It may be shed today or tomorrow or whenever. But that would be on the realization of rose being a rose, when any of the names smell the same way. Divine Love and Light :)

Note: i have written this in one go and so there may be grammatical errors or English errors but am nevertheless not bothered to make any corrections as it has come straight from the heart and i wish to keep it that way. Don't know if the whole thing may be understood or not, but if it does - am glad it served the purpose. Stay blessed :)

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