Tips on Living the Yogic Life
Here we are given the recipe for the spiritual path, in the tradition of Paramhansa Yogananda, taught to Swami Kriyananda, and passed to us in Ananda.
Nayaswamis Jyotish and Devi spoke on all of these during their recent visit to Portland, Oregon. They repeated different items, sometimes talking about them in slightly different ways. To further and deepen our understanding.
These are the practices of a yogi walking the path to Self-realization.
God-Guru greeting and reconnection: Every morning after sleep, which Yogananda called counterfeit samadhi, energetically we are more withdrawn. This is a good time to greet the Divine, acknowledging the Divine presence in our lives, as a ongoing practice to start our day. And then at the end our day, reconnecting with the Divine, maybe by reading a special passage in a book like The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita, or Whispers from Eternity. Setting the tone for our consciousness before we sleep again.
Energization: We are given these exercises by Yogananda, to aid us in the active practice of using and controlling our energy at will! These are a gift to us, basically. Yogananda stated once, that if there was only one technique to learn, the Energization Exercises would be it. As they will lead the yogi to all else on the path of Self-realization. Energization Exercise series.
Meditation: Even a little practice of this inward religion will free one from dire fears and colossal sufferings. We repeat this weekly in the Festival of Light service. It is a reminder that to find God, to connect to the Divine, we need to access the silence and stillness within ourselves. It is the soul’s longing to go deeply into stillness. And it is something that requires daily practice, to open those channels we hold within.
Gratitude: Being thankful for all things that we are given every day. It is so easy to be grateful for the good in life. So easy to say thank you when it goes with our expectations. We need to learn to say thank you, even when it does not. Swami Kriyananda used to make a practice of sincerely thanking the Divine in every circumstance, in what he was given.
Positivity: Nayaswamis Jyotish and Devi spoke so beautifully on the power of positivity in one’s life. How they are consciously shedding the desire to look at, react to, comment on, involve themselves in, the darkness or negative. Finding that it does nothing for their state of being. There’s so much negativity and restlessness in the world already. Why add to it, when it doesn’t make it better? Or help your inner peace! Inspiration: Find It and Keep It!
Centering: There are plenty of opportunities to learn, and use, the practices that help center us. Counted breathing or pranayam. Detaching ourselves from the situation, to quell the reactive process. Using positivity to deflect negative energy coming at us, or in us. It’s in these techniques, that we can access our true inner potential. Remembering that we are children of light with access to the Divine in every moment. Helping to stop us from the “wheel of reaction.” Yogananda Book Study Group.
Listening: God’s call is within us. Nayaswami Devi talked about God’s song, playing eternally within us. It is there. But it is quiet. It takes our practices to still the mind, calm the heart and open our “ears” to hear it. It’s there though. It is the eternal song that plays.