Where there is Dharma, there is Victory!
July 16, 2012
I have a PhD but my academic career didn't work out. Now I have a dilemma: if I put the PhD and postdoc years in my CV it will be next to impossible to find a "normal" job like in a supermarket; if I don't put it I have a big gap in my CV.
I think finding a job is a dharmic thing to do. Does it make it alright to say I worked in a supermarket in my homecountry, or should I stick to the truth at all costs even in the face of unreasonable discrimination for my higher degree?
Thank you for your question. I hope you don't mind, but I'd like to share a story that Swami Kriyananda shares quite often, as it relates to dharma:
I was in the Hospital in India several years ago with double pneumonia, lying barely conscious in my bed, when a doctor came into the room. Usually under such circumstances doctors come into one's room to offer help. This one, however, had a different agenda.
"Sir," he said, "Can you help me?"
"I can try," I murmured weakly.
"I have a son in college in Canada," he continued. "I also have many other financial obligations. I believe in spiritual principles, but how can I make ends meet and not bend the rules of right action at least a little bit?"
I replied, still very weakly, "I have always found that by adhering rigidly to right action, I have achieved all the success I wanted and needed in life."
And indeed, Swamiji is an incredible example to all of us that even in the face of extreme adversity, if we stick to dharma, we will be successful in everything we do.
If you're interested, he went on to create the AKASH (Ancient Keys to Attaining Success & Happiness) Course after that interaction with the doctor in India.
Here is a link to that course on Online With Ananda:
Love & Blessings,
Being Spiritual in a Depressing Work Environment
January 19, 2012
Salutations to you sirs, In a very depressing working environment , where professionalism is marred by undue political interference and blind favoritism, I do often find it miserable to dedicate my duties to GOD as a spiritual offering without discontent Please help me.
It's helpful to look at your life from the perspective of asking, "What will bring me fulfillment?" Another way of phrasing that question is, "What will bring me closer to the presence of God?"
Paramhansa Yogananda said that "environment is stronger than willpower," hence it is very important to look at the different parts of our lives and be aware of the influences of our environment - especially of other people and their energies.
That's not to say we should run away from life's challenges; the point is to respect the pull of delusion that can take us off course from our goal of finding fulfillment or being in God's presence.
In your work situation try exploring, with dynamic focus, the attitude of being even-mined and cheerful at all times. Have the perspective that joy is your true nature and allow that to permeate every moment of the day.
If after some time of applying yourself in this way you've found it's still not working for you, then consider other possible jobs where the environment is more supportive. Do as much as you can to live more in superconsciousness where solutions reside for every challenge. This is a good way to tune into God's will.
In his book, Affirmations For Self-Healing, Swami Kriyananda offers these words of advice regarding work:
"Work should be done with a creative attitude - never for the sake of selfish gain, but for the chance it gives us to help create a better world. Those who work with the thought of pay live in the future; they lose the habit of living here and now, where alone true happiness can be found. Work should always be done as well as possible - not out of self-conceit, but in gratitude for the free gift of life, of sunshine, of water, of air - and in gratitude, simply, for our God-given power to be useful to our fellowman."
Getting Through a Crisis Through Spiritual Success
October 13, 2011
I am in a big financial crises.How to overcome through spirituality? please guide me
You are obviously on the right track because you asked "how to overcome through spirituality".
The only way we can really get through any crisis is through spiritual success and connecting with that Divine reality within us. Of course, we do this to varying degrees throughout our lives but the more we make our spiritual life the main priority, the more outward success we see as well.
As Jesus says: "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God... and all these things shall be added unto you."
When we go within and lift our consciousness through meditation/inner communion, the answers to our life's situations become clear and we know which direction to go in more easily.
At the same time, we have to remember to put out tremendous amounts of energy when we know the direction we are meant to go in. We just have to continually check in to see that the direction is still the right one each day through our communion with Spirit.
I urge you to check out the AKASH Series that Swami Kriyananda wrote. It stands for: Ancient Keys to Attaining Success & Happiness and is available through Yogananda Institute.
Love & Blessings,
Pray for Those Who Challenge Us
June 15, 2011
My new boss is ignoring me and my work. He has pre-determined image of me. This causes me to be unhappy and unsafe. What are the techniques to eliminate all these matters?
Life often presents us with situations like the one in which you find yourself. There are several answers, the primary one being that you must lift your consciousness to a higher place through meditation.
With the bigger perspective offered through meditation, you'll see why your boss is behaving in this negative way and thereby, you can be more compassionate. Someone who behaves like this is often very unhappy for various unknown reasons.
Be sure to pray for your boss and visualize your sending healing energy, light, and love in his direction. Realize that you and he are one, and all that is happening now is karma being worked off between you.
Most likely, in a previous lifetime, you were the boss and he was the employee and you treated him badly. Now you get to see how it feels to be on the other side.
Don't let him "get your goat, " an American expression which means taking away your composure. Yogananda says this more deeply means "...don't let him take away your peace of mind!"
Gain that inner peace daily in your morning meditations, pray for him at the close of meditation, then do your best to proceed in doing your work as best you can, without attachment, staying calm and centered at all times.
If you really do this, I think you'll see a great difference in your working life.
Finding God's Joy Anywhere
May 17, 2011
What does Divine mother want from me? I am training to become a scientist, but Ive been feeling hugely disillusioned by science and I find joy only in the company of spiritual people and in contemplating love/god. Many days, I just feel like quitting and becoming a spiritual teacher. However, for what ever reason, I'm constantly given more opportunities and career breaks than most others who actually enjoy science! why? is this gods way of telling me to remain in science? How do I find out?
One of my favorite quotes from Yoganandaji is: "Life is a battle for joy every step of the way. Let me win that battle on the very spot on which I now stand." What we do in life is less important than the inner environment that we create within ourselves by practicing meditation and right attitudes.
So what does Divine Mother want of you? She wants you to find the joy of your own Self - a joy which is not dependent on any outward circumstance. If the opportunity presents itself for you to make a career change, you could consider it. But since the doors keep opening for you in science, it seems like the lesson is to live with the consciousness of God's joy always, and let Her take care of the details.
In divine friendship,
God Watches the Heart
May 3, 2011
If for some reason or other one is not wealthy but progressed spiritually and try to do everything what our line of GURU has tought at end not sure what will be his fate will GOD & GURU will be pleased and how is soul will progress and on the other hand take example of Mr.Bufett & Mr.Gates acquired everything and donated showing true non attachment to wealth shows tangible benefits will go from this world statisfied without knowing teachings of our line of GURU? With whom GOD is more pleased?
There is an old saying that "God watches the heart," meaning our motivation is more important than our action. Honestly and industriously earning money is a very positive action. Giving that money to worthy causes is better yet. But the mere act of giving money, however worthy the cause, does not necessarily indicate that the person is doing it for God.
On the other hand God is pleased with any action that is done for Him. A smile, a kind word, a generous act — if done for God — are as pleasing to God as donating billions of dollars — if done for God.
Spiritual progress is made as we attune ourselves to God in every thought and action. It doesn't really matter to God if your actions involve becoming wealthy or involve being a renunciant. The key to spiritual progress is inner attitude — not outward action.
Joseph (Puru) Selbie
How Can I Find Out My True Calling?
April 6, 2011
How do I find out what is my true calling in life? I think that I will be succesful when I find this and follow it. Someone else told me I should just try lots of things and have small successes and then I will find out. I just feel sluggish. Every day I feel that I begin again at the fotthill of the mountain Can you offer some advice? TY
I wouldn't try a lot of things to find out your calling. There are better ways.
First of all, it is good that you say "I will be successful," because without that thought success is impossible. Don't lose that conviction, but strengthen it in every possible way.
What is your calling? Calling in India is called "dharma." There is universal dharma and individual dharma. Universal dharma is the same for everyone: the calling to grow inwardly toward God. So whatever you decide to do, that universal dharma should be an important element in your life.
The more difficult question is to understand your individual dharma (right action), your personal calling. "Calling" is a good name for it, as it implies that there is someone who is doing that calling. It's true. That someone is God. Christians call dharma "the will of God" for you. So the trick for you is to hear what He is calling.
Here is how you do it: meditate every day, and try to get still. In that stillness lift your eyes and think of God in any way that is meaningful to you. If "God" is not a concept which appeals to you, think of superconsciousness. Establish an inner contact. Look at the spiritual eye and ask, "What do you want me to do with my life?" Then after some time place your awareness in the heart and feel. The answer to your sincere prayer-question might not come immediately in meditation, but might come to you in many other ways: by something someone says, something you hear or read, or through a thought popping up in your mind.
Or try the same technique more specifically: meditate, get still, look upwards toward God, establish a connection. Then, toward the end of meditation, visualize yourself in the spiritual eye following a specific calling, doing a specific work. Then ask, "Is this right?" After some time place your awareness in the heart and see if it feels right or not. Then repeat, visualizing yourself in the spiritual eye following another calling. Again ask and feel in the heart. Do that sincerely for some time. You'll get the right feeling, your answer.
However, you can never be 100% sure if you decided the right thing (only presumptuous persons are 100% sure). But at a certain point you simply have to decide. Being undecided for too long, doing nothing, will increase the sluggishness. And once you decide give it your all. Throw yourself fully into it. Overcome any lingering sluggishness. You scale that mountain with all your strength.
Also remember: spiritually speaking, yes, it is important to follow one's calling, but even more important is how you follow it: which attitudes and qualities you work; what you become doing it; with how you develop inwardly, as a person. Correct attitude in whatever we do is the bases of happiness and inner fulfillment, as well as the bases for spiritual unfoldment.
God bless you in your calling, and in hearing the Calling,
Finding God in the Workplace
March 5, 2011
I have a practical question.
Did Yogananda ever discuss special techniques on how to remain focused while in a hectic office environment. Specifically I am talking about Call Center work where it can be very draining listening to people asking many times the same things in multitude of different ways! Are there special things one should observe when dealing with people on the phone to protect energy levels? Clasping a bangle? Or is a deepening of a home meditation practise what is required?
I'm sure that everyone faces the challenges in life that you describe in one way or another - how to keep our minds focused and uplifted in midst of demanding activities.
First, as you mention, a deep, daily practice of meditation raises both our level of energy and our consciousness. Meditation fills our minds with calm, refreshing energy that enhances everything we do.
A daily practice of the Energization Exercises also fills us with vitality and enthusiasm for whatever we may encounter during the day.
During the workday at your Call Center, it's helpful to take "Energy Breaks" periodically, in which you consciously relax away physical and emotional tension and "reset" yourself. Do deep breathing or stretching or a few minutes of meditation.
Finally, when speaking to others on the phone, rather than thinking, "I've already answered this question 100 times today," think, "From my own higher Self, I am serving the God in others." Try to be a channel for divine peace and joy to everyone you speak with. You will literally never get tired if you work in this way.
We hope that these ideas are helpful to you.
May God and Guru bless your service,
- Guru-Disciple Relationship
- Health and Healing
- Karma, Reincarnation
- Kriya Yoga
- Paramhansa Yogananda
- Science and Yoga
- Spiritual Community
- Spiritual Parenting
- Spiritual Path
- Swami Kriyananda
- The Arts
- The Yugas
- Yoga Postures