Was Krishna Blue?
January 7, 2014
Are you really sure Lord Krishna was not actually blue? Do a search for “Blue Fugates”. Some people have methemoglobinemia, a genetic condition where the blood carries less-than-normal amounts of oxygen, making the blood appear blue. They lived healthy lives. There are some modern people who have/had argyria is caused by the ingestion of silver, usually for medicinal purposes. I have seen two blue/blue-gray people in Tucson, Arizona when I lived there.
Dear Elaine, I doubt that there is any absolute way to say what color Krishna’s skin might have been. Most likely, it is a poetic way of saying he was filled with great spiritual light — and blue, of course is a very “spiritual” color, being, as Yogananda says, one of the colors of the spiritual eye (along with white and gold). Or this may be a reference to his aura, rather than his actual skin color.
The scientific information you have offered is interesting, but I don’t know that it would be necessary to say that the Lord Krishna might have had one of these conditions and therefore had blue skin. If there was some sort of spiritual reason for him to have radiated blue light from his body, then no “logical” explanation would be needed. It would simply have been part of the very creative, divine lila (the divine play of God) for us to enjoy.
What Did Jesus Mean by “Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?”
January 2, 2014
Why did Jesus say “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” on the cross? Please help me to understand the real meaning/message behind this.
Dear Rewa, In an early edition of The Second Coming of Christ, Paramhansa Yogananda comments on these unusual words of Jesus, recorded in Matthew 27:46, and spoken during his crucifixion. Yogananda had been explaining how Jesus was tempted by Satan and how Jesus was both God and human (as we all are) at the same time.
He said: “If Jesus had been [only] God on earth, he could not have been tempted or shown signs of mental strife, as he did when he made statements like: ‘Father, if You are willing, remove this cup [of suffering] from me; nevertheless, not my will, but Thine be done.’” He also said: “My, God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?”
Crucifixion is an extremely painful and humiliating way to die. Naturally the human part of Jesus would tend to want to protest treatment like this. Who wouldn’t? But the God part of Jesus knew it was the will of God for him to go through this great test; thus he accepted it as gracefully as possible. Just moments later, Jesus said: “It is finished. Father, into Thy hands I commend my spirit.”
If Jesus had not been a human being and gone through human suffering, what hope would we have in learning about the process that he, and all of us, must go through to overcome all suffering and find final liberation and oneness with God?
“Seeing” Our Loved Ones Who Have Passed
November 26, 2013
A few times a year I speak with my aunt who lives overseas. This week she confided in me that every few nights she “sees” her two closest loved ones that have passed. Both her husband and son passed at rather young ages as a result of illness due to alcohol consumption (both were very much loved). I include all of them and daughter in my prayers. Can you advise how best to help her, what specifically can I tell her? (I’m learning her language, good opportunity to practice!). Love and Light.
You are definitely doing the right thing in including all these relatives in your prayers. Keep going with that! It is probably the best of all thing you can do to help your aunt and all who are involved. Send them light and love!
But if you really feel you need to comment on her report of “seeing” her deceased husband and son every few night, it would be wise for you to go very slowly and see how much she is willing to talk with you on the subject of "What happens after someone dies.” Humbly ask God to guide you about how or even if to do this.
For those who are grieving, it’s not always easy to have a calm discussion about such a great loss. Naturally the questions in most people’s mind would be: “Are the souls of her husband and son really coming to her now and if so, why?” or “Is this just her imagination, because of her great love for them or longing to see them again?”
Perhaps you might gently ask her a few questions like: “Why do you think they are coming to you now? Do they have anything specific to say to you? Do they seem happy or troubled?” This might give you some good clues about how to proceed.
The great masters often say that loved ones who have gone before us can be called back by our attachment to them or great grief or longing to see them again. But this is not necessarily the best thing for them. It might cause them to remain “earthbound” when their souls need to move forward into new dimensions.
So if you feel you can do this gently, you might suggest that she should not “...hold on so tightly to them, so as to delay their spiritual progress. Let them go on now, into their new place of light and joy.”
Are These Creatures Real?
November 6, 2013
What is your opinion about “Bigfoot” and the “Loch Ness Monster”? Many say they have seen these creatures. I know that this doesn’t have much to do with spirituality, but still it could be interesting to know whether Master or maybe Swami Kriyananda said something about this?
Very sincerely, Tommy T.
No, sorry, we cannot locate a place where either Paramhansa Yogananda or Swami Kriyananda mentions anything about “Bigfoot” or the “Loch Ness Monster.”
You ask: “What is your opinion about them?” Personally, I think that all things are possible in this world (and in other worlds, too). Many things written off as unproven, unscientific, or “fringe phenomena” are simply things not yet discovered or fully understood by science at its present point of development.
Time will tell. Plus, it’s always good to keep an open mind.
October 14, 2013
I was in a healing session with my sis who is Pranic healer and also a kriyaban. She scanned by astral body and observed that all my chakras are twice as big as an average person has (from her experience of healing other persons) and also that my 3rd eye is the very big. Is this a cause of concern? What is the reason that all my chakras are so big? Thanks.
It would be difficult to measure the "size" of a chakra, since they are not in a material dimension. Rather they are a part of our astral bodies. They are made of light and energy.
Probably what your sis is saying is that your chakras seem brighter than usual and filled with a great, radiating light, which I would say would be a very good thing, indeed! So no cause for concern. Instead, a cause for rejoicing!
Why would they appear bigger than usual? Possibly due to some strong spiritual efforts you have made in this or other (past) lifetimes.
The chakras have many functions, but one is to store our past karma. If your past karma is predominantly good and filled with the desire to find God and freedom, then naturally your chakras would reflect this.
My advice would be for you to take this as an important sign for you to increase your spiritual efforts now, in this lifetime. Meditate daily and work towards Kriya Yoga Initiation also, if you have not already done that.
What is Tantric Sex?
September 3, 2013
Hi, Am not sure if this is the right place to ask. Please forgive me if I offend someone. Recently I have been introduced to tantric sex and wants to learn more about it. I want to ask what is the place of sex in yoga. Is it something you should refrain from? If not, is yoga the first step to achieve tantric mastery? What kind of activities or exercises should I do and what kind of goals should I aim for tantric mastery? Are yoga and tantra totally discrete from each other in terms of the final goal?
We are not offended, and we are happy to answer your questions as best as we can.
Tantra yoga is greatly misunderstood these days, both in India and in the West. In his book The Hindu Way of Awakening (which I highly recommend), there is a whole chapter on tantra yoga.
In it, Swami Kriyananda explains that tantra is much more than working with sexual energy alone and should be understood much more broadly than most people do these days. “...tantra [means] to accept what is, but replace it gradually with something better, until a new fulfillment overwhelms the falsity of the other, and robs it of its very lure to fulfillment. As Yogananda put it, 'Once you taste good cheese, the stale kind you’ve enjoyed will lose all attraction for.’ ” Tantra also means detaching the mind from whatever one is doing.
“Even while eating or drinking, for example, detach yourself mentally. This means looking squarely at the act, rather than glancing sidelong at it with the pretense that it isn’t there, and isn’t really tempting anyway. Accept it honestly, in other words, but at the same time try to diminish the appeal it holds for you. Affirm mentally, instead, ‘I am not this weakness. I observe the action in myself, but that is not who I am’.”
You ask: “What is the place of sex in yoga?” Sex is part of life’s many sensory aspects, which, as yogis, one does one’s best to overcome gradually. We begin by reducing over-indulgence in ANY sensory stimulation, such as over-eating, over indulging in TV or media of any kind, and so on. Sexual thoughts or activities would be included in that list.
Notice the words: “overcome gradually.” As Swami Kriyananda implies above, it is often too difficult in the beginning of one’s spiritual journey to overcome all our basic drives, all at once.
One good way to begin taking charge of our lives and our energy is to substitute something better for what we are trying to overcome. You begin to know from the depths of your being: “Meditation (for example) is SO MUCH better and brings me so much more joy than ______ (whatever the sense indulgence might be). Why bother with the ‘stale cheese’ any more.”
Yoga (and especially yoga meditation!) is a good step towards every kind of personal self-mastery and self-realization. It is much better to follow a fully balanced path of yoga and not just focus on one small aspect of it (like tantra).
To learn more about that and also about what you have asked about activities and exercises you should do, I d strongly suggest you study The Art and Science of Raja Yoga. It offers a very balanced and “do-able” way to approach all the many aspects of yoga. This would be light-years better (and safer for you) than focusing on tantra yoga alone.
Is It Ever Right to Use Harsh Words?
August 26, 2013
Is it okay to use harsh speech and tone when several rounds of sweet speech doesn’t help one to mend his or her ways? At times there are people who do not understand sweet or plain language. If harsh language helps to discipline them, the why not?
Joy to you! You ask a simple question but it has a lot of considerations. Unfortunately, there are times when one may have to use, “harsh words and tones.” For example, if a child continues to run out into the street after numerous attempts using sweet words has been in vain — one might have to use harsh words and tone. Otherwise great harm or danger could occur. Law enforcement must use harsh speech and tone, in order create safety. So if danger or harm is possible then harsh words and tone might be appropriate.
Coaches or directors might use harsh speech and tones to make changes in behavior. But that works best after respect and trust has been established between both parties. In the case of coaching, there is a loving exchange that is involved. It’s done in subtle way that challenges and motivates one to use that energy to drive them self to the next level. Some artists and athletes desire harsh lexicon because they see as the energy needed to bring out their best. The student knows that the harshness is done with only the player’s best at heart. The harsh words are done with a much needed sharing of passion, if you will. Speaking for myself, as a professional athlete and coach to other professionals, we saw it and loved coaches who were willing to go the extra mile to push us to the maximum. But, again, we had an unwritten unspoken agreement that allowed what ever it took get us past my limitations — we demanded it. Or we would find someone who would speak in whatever way needed to bring out inner warrior.
Most people do not appreciate harsh speech and tone directed toward them. In fact, sometimes harsh energy creates a powerful resistance to change. Without a mutual agreement, the harshness makes some people rebel with great vigor. When harsh language does force change, the change lasts as long as the fear of being treated negatively is there. Once the fear element leaves the poor behavior returns with a dynamo of resistance to transform.
Harsh expressions can make the person yelling feel very powerful and or good. But it’s a false sense of power. It seldom works to make the other feel better even if they make the change. It is to say, it feeds the ego of the one being harsh. As devotees a very good habit is to keep the ego in check, inspire and learn how to utilize our Inner Divinity. We don’t want to make any action, thought or deed feed the ego. A good habit is tune into Master or our Higher Divinity when we think we need to communicate in a negative way. This way we if we must be harsh grace will take the edge off. A good goal is to communicate change through inspiration whenever possible.
I highly suggest you read, The Art of Supportive Leadership, by Swami Kriyananda. There is a tremendous amount of wisdom regarding how to “lead” people towards the change needed. To order the book, contact Crystal Clarity Publishers at, http://www.crystalclarity.com.
I hope this helps,
What is the Point of Prayer?
July 30, 2013
What is the point of praying when Yogananda says that you can not get more then you deserve? If I deserve little I will get little. It doesn’t matter how much I pray or meditate. It’s all a waste of time. Am I wrong? Did I misunderstand something?
I don’t know where you are quoting Yogananda from, but I do know this; what you deserve is freedom in God. We all do, and Yogananda wanted us all to know this truth. Surely we all have Karma in motion and what is ours will come to us. How we perceive what comes to us is one of our spiritual challenges. When we feel that what is happening in our lives is good, we are happy, when we don’t like what is happening, often we are unhappy. Feeling God’s love and joy is not dependent on any outward circumstance — it is our birthright and we must cultivate our awareness of it through prayer, meditation and devotion. When praying for yourself, pray only for the ability to align yourself with God’s will, and for the power to carry that out.
When you meditate and feel God’s presence, then pray for others as Yogananda taught us to do with Divine Will healing. “Divine Mother thou art omnipresent, thou art in all thy children, thou art in (add a name here), manifest thy healing presence in their body, mind and soul.” Rub your hands together and then hold them out, feeling God’s power flowing out through them to whomever you are praying for. Chant AUM three times. Leave the results in God’s hands. The channel is blessed by that which flows through it.
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