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Siddharth Patel
India

Question

What is the meaning of surrender to God? How can I keep the attitude that God is the doer while working?

Nayaswami Hriman

Nayaswami Hriman

Ananda Seattle

Answer

Dear Siddharth,

"Surrender" to God means many things but certainly starts with or includes openness to God’s presence in our lives. It includes being open to do (and think, and say) what is true, right, and just. It is another way of saying that we should be willing to do "God’s will" as it is shown to us by our common sense, moral and ethical guidelines, scripture, and the wisdom of the ages and sages.

Karen
UK

Question

Hi, Yogananda says that all desires must be fulfilled. Is this also the case with lower desires you may have when you’re young or emotional but grow out of? Will you have to 'suffer' the consequences of having those desires even after you’ve developed and now want different things? Thank you

Nayaswami Gyandev

Nayaswami Gyandev

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Karen,

Swami Kriyananda once asked Paramhansa Yogananda that very question: “Do you mean that even a desire I had once for an ice cream cone when I was six years old will have to be somehow fulfilled?" “Oh yes,” Yoganandaji replied.

Every desire traps some of your energy in a whirlpool. That energy must be freed in order for you to become Self-realized. It can be freed either through fulfilling the desire outwardly (not the recommended—or even feasible—approach), or through spiritual practices. As Patanjali put it in his Yoga Sutras: “Yoga is the neutralization of the whirlpools of feeling. Then the Seer abides in Its essence.” In other words, once you have dissolved the energetic whirlpools of desires, like and dislikes, etc., you will live in soul consciousness.

Karan K
Australia

Question

I find that when I fall asleep again after my morning meditations, I have scary disturbing dreams. The theme is always the same. Spirits of some sort or someone harming me in the dreams. I am always trying to say Om Guru or call out our Guru’s name but I can’t seem to find my voice, nothing comes out. I can only call mentally. Why does thus happen?

Nayaswami Parvati

Nayaswami Parvati

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Karan,

Many times when we dream what we experience are simply random thoughts that are stored in the subconscious mind. What is stored there is unique to each person, and contains every thought we have ever had (over all our lifetimes), no matter how insignificant it might be. In fact, the subconscious mind can be compared to a refrigerator, in that it does not discriminate, but simply stores thoughts.

October 16
2014

nishanth
india

Question

For a mind without perceptions does karma exist??

Good and bad exists only when you perceive, e.g. people perceive this is right and that is wrong and live in illusion.

When a child without knowing playfully kills ants, does this create karma?

Nayaswami Pranaba

Nayaswami Pranaba

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Nishanth,

Paramhansa Yogananda described the mind as that part of us that perceives the reality we live in. So the mere fact that we have a mind also entails that we have perceptions. The mind, by its inherent nature, tends to see the separateness of everything, but it also helps us to distinguish between good and bad.

Josh
USA

Question

Hello,

I’m having trouble praying for an opportunity for a career change. The job I currently have is unfulfilling. I’ve become certified to become a personal trainer in the hope of helping people improve their quality of life. However, I’m having trouble finding a job. I wish to pray for an opening but feel like it is a selfish request and isn’t “worthy.” I’m confused as how to proceed. Any guidance would be very appreciated.

Thank you and God bless,

Josh

Nayaswami Diksha

Nayaswami Diksha

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Josh,

Yogananda in his book, Whispers from Eternity, prefers to use the word “demand” instead of the word “prayer.” [Editor's note: See the "Hints to the Reader" section.] He said that we are God’s children and therefore have dominion over all things in the universe, even as He has. Therefore we have the right to demand of our Heavenly Father to help fulfill our needs.

October 16
2014

Chris Mc
USA

Question

I have a weight issue and struggle going up and down on my weight, and would like to do the nine-day diet, but there is not one till January. By chance is there someone there who would assist me? Also, can I use potatoes since you allow one cooked vegetable? Also, must it all be organic? Do you have advice for me to keep at a healthy weight? Thank you , Chris

Nayaswami Diksha

Nayaswami Diksha

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Chris,

The nine-day cleansing diet will help you not only to loose weight but also to revitalize your body cells.

I am sending you the link to the nine-day diet as it is described by Nayaswami Devi, the co-director of Ananda, who has been doing it for many years. Her guidance will be helpful for you to do it yourself.

Jen
USA

Question

Hello,

What is the difference between obedience and cooperative obedience? These have never been very clear to me.

Thank you!

Nayaswami Savitri

Nayaswami Savitri

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Jen,

Swami Kriyananda tried very hard, for many years, to explain the subtle difference between the principles of obedience and cooperative obedience. The difference is subtle, but very important to understand, so thanks for asking!

He said: “Cooperative obedience means evoking intelligent, creative participation in whatever people are being asked to do, as opposed to that kind of obedience which asks people for their cooperation, but never allows them to ask questions.”

Carina
Europe

Question

Is God really all-loving and all-forgiving? For example, does he also forgive people like Hitler, Stalin and so on? I have learned that God loves every soul equally. Is this also true in such cases? I can’t stop wondering if there might be something one can do which God wouldn’t forgive. Is there any exception to his Love and forgiveness? I was raised Catholic and the idea of an angry God traumatized me deeply. I am still working on my doubt that God is all-forgiving and loving.

Puru (Joseph) Selbie

Puru (Joseph) Selbie

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Carina,

Forgiveness implies there is judgment. How can God judge a part of Himself? According to the Masters, God would no more judge us than we would judge our hand. We are, always have been, and always will be, inseparable from God. The only separation is in our awareness. The saints describe the experience of reuniting with God as awakening to a reality that has always been. It is only our preoccupation with a tiny portion of the infinity of God — our body, personal feelings, desires, and thoughts — that keeps us from knowing our oneness with Him right now.

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