I would like to deepen my attunement with my guru, Paramhansa Yogananda, as I work. Do you have any suggestions?
Here are some suggestions:
1) Meditate without fail every moring, even if it is for only a short time — but of course, the more the better. Close your meditation by looking at Yogananda’s picture and saying inwardly: "Be with me all day today. Everytime I forget you, remind me to remember you and to hold you in my heart and mind. Guide all my thoughts and actions."
2) Conscious breathing. When you get un-centered, stop what you are doing and quietly do a few deep breathing exercises. Ask Yogananda to help you remember the peace you experienced in your morning meditation. When consciously breathing, keep your mind focused at the spiritual eye. Bring your attention there and try to keep it there all the time. Put your right index finger on the 3rd eye and hold it there for a moment, eyes closed. This doesn’t have to take more than a minute or two.
2) Mini-meditations (10 seconds or longer) throughout the day, beginning them by praying: "Yogananda, please be with me right now. May I feel your loving presence in my heart, right here in the middle of my busy day."
3) "Cut yourself some slack!" Translation: Don’t be too hard on yourself. If you fail to stay attuned to Yogananda all day long, don’t say, "I have failed." Simply say: "I have not yet succeeded." Try harder tomorrow.
4) Sing inwardly or outwardly Paramhansa Yogananda’s or Swami Kriyananda’s chants on the way to and from work, then all day long, practice practice japa (continuous affirmations, chanting, or repetition of God’s name).
5) Write down these word of Yogananda’s and put them at your primary work area: "Remember all the time that all conditions are neutral! It’s not what is happening to me that is important, but how I’m responding."
6) See everything as a learning experience. Life is school. Enjoy your challenges, for they are what make you stronger.
7) Be thinking or saying a positive affirmation from Paramhansa Yogananda or Swami Kriyananda as often as you can remember to do so.
8) Seeing Yogananda in everyone — that "saint" or higher self or the part of them which is God, and even (and maybe especially) in those who "push your buttons.
9) Let Yogananda serve through you. See your work as service and then see that service as a partnership between you and him, saying, "Yogananda, let’s get this done together!"
10) As often as possible throughout the day, pray Yogananda’s beautiful prayer : "I will reason, I will will, I will act, but guide Thou my reason, will and activity to the right thing that I should do, in all things."
11) Yogananda says: "Every day do something creative; something you’ve never done before; approach even mundane tasks with a fresh, creative spirit." Put this into practice!
12) Mix with the saints. Bring “saints” with you to work in the form of pictures, posters, flowers, whatever’s possible.
13) Choose your company and your friends carefully; "people environment" is incredibly influential. "Environment is stronger than will power." Avoid useless chatter or gossip.
14) Strive to do what Yogananda says: "Be even-minded and cheerful at all times."
15) Contemplate infinity — endlessness — eternity; go outsides at night and contemplate a starry sky; live in the longer rhythms of life.
16) Do something special every Thursday (Guru Day) to honor Yogananda, such as a small ritual to begin or end your work-day.
17) When not at work, spend more inward, alone, and silent times; "Seclusion is the price of greatness."
18) Fight against discouragement — delusion’s greatest tool — don’t give in to it!
19) Most of all, try to meditate each day more deeply than the day before and then strive to bring the peace and joy of meditation out into daily life. "Your spiritual life is best tested in the cold light of day!"
20) Never give up your quest for more and more attunement with your guru! Pray for new and better ways to have it happening better and better, in every moment of every day. What better way to live your life?
May Yogananda bless us all!