Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Love in Separation

 Hare Krishna! 

Have you ever loved someone? Have you ever had the feeling of missing them? I have and I'm going through this experience in my life right now. 

I recently got divorced after I found out my ex-wife was cheating on me and having illicit affairs. It's been one of the hardest and most painful experience of my life. Sometimes I would not wish for anyone to go through. What has been harder though is seeing the kids post-divorce. 

That's where the above question comes in - I love my kids dearly, they are my life and soul. They have been my life and soul ever since they came into my life. I have lived my life with Krsna in the center and taking decisions with the kid's welfare always in mind. With the divorce, suddenly, my time with the kids has been cut in half. I feel I have been robbed of my time with my kids, whom I dearly love, in half. It's very cruel, especially the days when I have to drop the kids off at their mom's house. I miss them dearly and wish I could have them with me so I could be part of their every moment growing up. I've had many emotional moments alone thinking about them and missing them. 

Material life is such - it's not a place of happiness. There is always pain and suffering in the world. Padam padam vipadam - at every step there is suffering. I have come to realize that. Through this painful experience of life, I feel materially exhausted and I feel very grateful to my Lord. Lord Sri Krsna. 

I feel this is Krsna's plan to help me realize:

  1. Everything in this world is temporary. 
  2. The relationships I have are not permanent.
  3. The kids for example are sometimes with me and sometimes not with me.
  4. This has given me a glimpse of love in separation. My love for them has increased more and more due to this separation.
  5. The separation also has taught me the importance of time.
  6. The time I spend with them is precious, and I must make use of every moment with them.
  7. Help them develop into big strong boys with Krsna in the center of their lives. As Krsna is the source of all happiness.
I also reflected on the thought of Love in Separation. The Srimad Bhagavatam says that Love in Separation is more intense that love in union. What does that mean? Does it mean that when you are with someone, we get carried away and forget that we are going to lose them soon? Does it mean we taken them for granted?  Does it mean that the intensity we feel being connected to them, with them is less than the intensity we feel when they are away? Do we think about them more when they are away than when they are with us? Yes, I have felt these feelings. Some hint of what the Gopis felt when Krsna left them. That feeling of separation. I can only imagine how the Gopis must have felt when their life and soul, the very person of their existence left them, they must have literally died. It must have made them think of Krsna all the time - 24*7. I believe that is what Krsna is trying to teach me with this experience. How to revive my love for Krsna in separation. Currently, we are separated from Krsna as we have forgotten Him. We are so tied into this material world. Through chanting the Holy Name, Reading SB we realized who we really are - A spirit spark and part of Krsna. We are not this body, but this soul who always has an eternal relationship with Krsna and we need to be able to think of Him 24*7 to again revive that love and relationship with Him.

I pray at the lotus feet of the Vaishnavas, to kindly pray for me so, through this experience, I can realize that Love in Separation for my dear Lord Krsna and also share this with my kids whom I dearly love. 

Hare Krishna!

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Fearlessness through Awareness

Video link -

- Aim of session is "Spiritual fitness" and moto is "All things must pass"
- Awareness capacity is very important.
- Ways in which we can expand our awareness to go beyound the plane of fear
- Practicalities of developing an awareness program
- When we see that we are helpless we get humble and feel vulnerable.
- These points are said in BG - Humility and Pridelessness and being vulnerable are qualities to develop which will help in our spiritual journey.
- "This too shall pass"
- Story of King and ring which will make sad happy and happy sad.
- If someone is feeling sad and morose and we hear this too shall pass then
- We should also remember this saying This too shall pass.
- We should be steady in happiness, distress - BG and this too shall pass.
- Earthworm conciousness: All the creatures of the world have no concerns.
- When we want things to go our way and it goes the other way really fast that's called a disaster.
- Lifespan of different creatures - beginning, middle and end of the field of activities.
- Same way in our lifespan we have an beginning and an end and things are going against us for example we are getting old.
- So we feel that we won't die and we will live forever but when we realize how our material bodies one day are going to die that gives us a different perspective and we start to realize that This too shall pass.
- Then, this won't grip me. We just need to observe it but not feel like yanking it back.
- Embrace reality
- Distinguishing reality from illusion for the welfare of all.
- Lowest are the senses interacting with the matter
- Above is the mind clearing house of all the senses
- Above this is Intelligence which has vivek (discriminations) - accept or reject based on how we condition our mind.
- When the intelligence becomes developed then we are able to discriminate.
- Above that comes the atma or the conciousness.
- How do we do this = Chit samadhi, spiritual practice, even a moment we take to understand we are not the life situation, we are the life. We are only observing all things around us.
- We are a concious being and we can being concious about being concious.
- It's beyound time and that will help us not get caught into the gears of material life, because if we put are finger into the gear, it will take our hand.
- Right now we are OK, but my mind is saying I'm not OK in future.
- We should always be in the moment. With the practice of not burdening ourselves always thinking what's going to happen, what's going to happen, we can live in the moment.
- Freedom is got through discipline.
- When the child goes to school and has discipline and then later on has the freedom to do whatever they want to do.
- Karma Yoga = do my work but do it selflessly
- Ex of a forest => forest fire - when there is a breakdown then there is a reconstructed unity. When everything fall apart, it actually helps to become much stronger. There are periods in the nature that things break down and then things get reconstructed, it's not the end of the world.
- From the chaos comes a different perspective.
- Krsna says in the BG that things are always changing and we should not ask why is this issue happening to me but ask the question - what is the lesson, try to understand what is the lesson.
- When difficulty comes just ask the question what is the lesson.
- Look from a higher perspective so when things break we can see from a higher place. Let's look and see how to make improvements and take this opportunity.
- We are the life and not the life situation. The life situation is always going to change but we are the life and that is not going to change.
- We can see that if we have a good home practice. Guidelines of home practice => 21 day fitness challenge - Body, Mind and Soul
- Hence mind becomes more peaceful.

- Summary of the practical tips:
- Take advantage of the rich soil after a forest fire.
- Be aware of who you are - using the 21 day challenge using the body (vehicle to take us around), mind (Sadhana) and soul (Atma)
- For Body what's most important is Sleep. Wake up before the sun comes up and regulate your mind by not overstimulating it before you sleep, Eat health and walk daily.
- Mind - wake up to an affirmation, mind is very vulnerable when we wake up. First thing we say is an afforism. Greet the day with a map - be more deliberate on the priorities of the day and manage screen time - be deliberate on why you are going online.
- Spirit - Do mantra meditation (very powerful in uplifting our spirit), Listen to the sound and bring mind back to the mantra, Selfless service (Do service with no remuneration) Don't take any recognition, Gratitude journal - start by jotting down all items we are grateful for and start with the most mundance things and that's a great place to be.
- Mantra meditation is so powerful because it comes from a different plane. It's like medicine. If we take medicine and trust the medicine, it hasn't worked yet but I know it will work. Just knowing that this medicine is going to work it will give us solace.
- Do the 21 day challenge regularly and practice, hear the mantra and let the mantra work itself.
- Tie the mind as a horse to the pole around the mantra.
- Take time everyday to create a sacred place because it will stick with us.

- Mantra Meditation
- Japa is a kind of self practice which you can transport anywhere.
- Ancient traditions like padma purana say meditation starts with the tongue and if we can control the tongue then we can control all the senses.
- By engaging the tongue on saying the Mantra it will help us to keep it engaged.
- Takes about 7-10 minutes for a round.
- Sankhya purvaka => Always count the mantras.
- Primary practice sitting, also walking is OK  3Ps(Posture, Pronunciation, Prayer - I need help)
- Be aware when we are chanting. Our tongue might be doing it but our mind has run away. So be aware to the mantra and try to keep bringing it back to the mantra so we are being mindful to it.
- Mantra is 100 and thousands of years old 3 words only
- Hare = Energy of our original divine source
- Krsna = Attractive feature, beyond the darkness of this material world all light
- Rama - Spiritual happiness
- Whatever goes into your ear goes into the bay of your heart
- The medicine goes into the ear, goes into the heart and from the heart a purification process takes place.
- It's normal for the mind to take off and going back into the ocean of misery and one of the practice if to bringing back the mind to the mantra.
-The point of absorbtion or samadhi is when we don't worry about the time factor. That is the point so we can go deeper and will help us in our journey.
- When doing this practice on a regular basis will help us train the mind.
- In NOI says that this is like a medicine similar to taking the medicine for jaundice.  Keep taking the medicine and as we are getting cured we start to getting cured. Just keep taking it and at some point we feel, wow that tasted us good.
- Always keep the vibration going and where attension goes energy flows.