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Luv Agrawal
India

Question

Where to find a yogi guru?

Has anyone in Ananda Sangha or any swami that you know, has attained nirvkalpa samadhi? can you show me the way?

Why did Swami Kriyananda did not achieve mahasamadhi like paramhans yogananda, inspite of being his direct disciple?

why did swami kriyananda had to leave the spiritual path and live a married life?

can you please answer my above stated questions..

please.. i am a sincere seeker and need answers.

Nayaswami Hriman

Nayaswami Hriman

Ananda Seattle

Answer

Dear Luv Agrawal:

One doesn’t "find" a guru in the manner you describe: one’s karma draws to you a true guru by the depth, the sincerity and the purity of your efforts towards divine attunement. It is not ours to judge the spiritual realization of other souls. Our duty is to our own spiritual growth. Divine Mother will send to you what your soul needs at the right time.

How would you know the difference between someone who has had nirvikalpa samadhi and one who has not? Simply their saying so? "He who says he knows, doesn't; he who says he doesn’t, doesn't; he who knows: KNOWS!"

Be not concerned about Swami Kriyananda: his spiritual realization is between him and God. He has left this earth. Many great saints, even avatars such as Lahiri Mahasaya, Lord Krishna, etc. were married. And, who says Swami Kriyananda did not achieve mahasamadhi? Who is qualified to know that?

You are looking in the wrong places. Purify your body; calm your thoughts; open your heart in devotion. See and serve God in all and pray for guidance; pray for God to send to you whatever and whoever you need at this time to help you. The issue today is NOT who is a true guru, but WHO IS A TRUE DISCIPLE!

I wish you well on your journey to Self-realization!

Nayaswami Hriman

Rush
USA

Question

I’ve read that various Hindu Gods (i.e. Ganesha) are actually given 'life' and an astral reality due to the tremendous energy generated by the masses' devotion to that form. Could this also be true of other unexplainable phenomena, i.e. the Loch Ness Monster or Bigfoot, where people’s intense interest actually 'create' an astral reality, such that those forms can 'cross over' sporadically onto the physical plane so they are witnessed by folks?

Nayaswami Savitri

Nayaswami Savitri

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Rush,

I remember Swami Kriyananda being asked this same question, about the "reality" of the Hindu gods and goddesses. He gave essentially the same answer you have mentioned. That is, the great devotion generated by masses of worshipers can cause the entity to take a "real" form, from time to time.

As for other unexplained phenomena such as the Loch Ness monster or Bigfoot, what you are mentioning about their having an astral reality seems quite possible to me, though I don’t remember and cannot find any specific reference to these two (or anything similar) in the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda or Swami Kriyananda.

There are many, many things in our world, which could come under the heading of "unexplained phenomena." There are probably a lot more "crossover" situations between the material world and the astral world than most people can even begin to imagine.

dhruv parikh
india

Question

first of all i want to thanks diksha mccord for her diet recipes..my question is on re-incarnation...who was anandamoyi ma,ramana maharshi,rabindranath tagore,gandhi,ramkrishna paramhansa in their past incarnation?i heared that anandamoyi ma was avatar...

Nayaswami Diksha

Nayaswami Diksha

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Dhruv Parikh,

Although I have read about all these great saints, I have not heard or found information on who they were in past lives. But I have a question for you: Is yours a useful question? How would this information benefit you?

It seems to me that it is better to tune to the consciousness of those saints, meditate on them, read about their lives and get inspiration on how to make your life better by living in their consciousness as much as you can.

Anandamoi Ma was a great soul, regardless of whether she was an avatar and she is able to help us if we tune in to her consciousness.

Blessings,

Nayaswami Diksha

December 15
2014

G
Canada

Question

According to Paramhamsa Yogananda, the intellect is in the forehead, the seat of the ego at the medulla oblongata, and the mind at the top of the head. However, the Sahasrara chakra is also said to be located at the top of the head. What is the difference between the location of the mind aspect and the Sahasrara chakra?

Thank you

Nayaswami Savitri

Nayaswami Savitri

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear G,

This is certainly an intriguing question you are asking!

Yes, you are right about Yogananda’s teaching about the locations in the body of mind, intellect, ego, and feeling as being the top of the head, the spiritual eye, the medulla oblongata, and the heart, respectively.

And these are the location of specific chakras also. This means that each chakra has a general location in the energy or astral body, which corresponds to a general physical location also. The chakras also have energetic powers/functions, used to keep the physical body, brain, emotions, and so on, functioning.

For example, it’s easy to see how the 4th or heart chakra in the center of the chest (not the physical heart organ) is the general location where our emotional/feeling life has its central "headquarters."

Your main question, as I understand it, is: "What is the difference between the location of the mind aspect and the Sahasrara (Crown) chakra?"

The "mind" in yogic terminology is the simple ability/function of the brain to be able to think.

Why Yogananda would say that the mind is more at the top of the head than all over the brain/skull area probably has to do with the ways that different parts of the physical brain function. For example, the pre-frontal lobes of the brain (positive aspect of the 6th chakra/forehead), where the spiritual eye is located is very sophisticated and also is the most spiritual part of the brain (again, according to yogic teachings). It is here that we concentrate and meditate deeply.

The intellect, as Yogananda describes it, can do more than just think. It can carefully perceive subtle and not-so-subtle differences in what the mind is simply thinking about.

Yogananda’s example: The mind thinks, "I am seeing a thing." The intellect discerns more carefully and says, "O, that thing is a horse!" The ego further identifies it by saying, "Oh, that’s my horse." Finally, the feeling nature of the heart chakra steps in and says: "Oh, how I love my horse! How sad I would be if I lost my horse!"

So, what is the difference between location of the mind and the 7th Chakra? One is the general location of the mind in the astral, not physical, body (7th chakra/top of the head/Sahasrara) and the other is the function of the mind/brain (simple thinking processes).

Again, one is a general location in the astral body, the other is the primary way that chakra’s energy functions in the physical world.

Siddharth Patel
India

Question

What is the meaning of serving the God? God is the supreme, how can I serve Him?

Kristy Fassler-Hecht

Kristy Fassler-Hecht

Ananda Maine

Answer

Your question, "How can I serve God when God is the Supreme" is very simple to answer. Look at the lives of the great saints, the masters, all lovers of God. See how they serve the highest in every soul and situation with love, peace, humility and freedom.

Jesus Christ said essentially, "He who serves another, serves Me." You can choose to be an instrument for God’s love in the world or an instrument for selfish desires.

We have these choices every moment. Which are you choosing? Which choices result in an experience of inner peace and bliss? When you experience soul peace and bliss, you know you are serving God as "the instrument is blessed by that which flows through it" (as Paramhansa Yogananda said).

Ask God to flow through you to be a channel for His Love in the world. Then be a willing instrument and allow His love to flow to others with love in your heart for the Beloved!

In Divine Friendship,

Kristy

Truthseeker
India

Question

Once a swami demonstrated with two 'thin rods' how he could detect auras around with them. He told that saying Aum with anything creates negative energy and that after Aum there should be atleast a small pause or Aum should come after the word eg. 'Namashivaya Aum' and only then it will create positive energy. He also 'proved' it with those rods. Is this actually true? I ask this because I like chanting Aum Guru and I’m not really convinced.

Thank you!

Nayaswami Gyandev

Nayaswami Gyandev

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Truthseeker,

Paramhansa Yogananda strongly recommended the mantra, “AUM Guru.” Swami Kriyananda relayed that recommendation to all of us at Ananda. I don’t think you will go wrong with that mantra.

You will encounter many differing points of view among the greater yoga community. Do not try to reconcile them all, because some of them contradict others of them. The important thing is to practice what your guru recommended, because your guru alone can take you to God.

Blessings,

Gyandev

vishwas
India

Question

Hi , I am 24 year boy I have a couple of questions :

Is brahmacharya ( celibacy is one part ) is necessary to go deep in spirituality ??

My body moves vigorously in meditation and feel somebody whispering ( worried whether its ghost ?)

Some other symptoms in meditation : feel my body grows and crosses the earth and becomes one with universe and sometimes I feel I enter some planet ... Is these are illusions ????

Nayaswami Hriman

Nayaswami Hriman

Ananda Seattle

Answer

Dear vishwas:

Celibacy may be helpful but I would caution you from pursuing this without some guidance from someone who knows you well, is spiritually minded, and has only your best interests in mind.

As to the meditation symptoms, I have the same advice: find a meditation mentor who is experienced, and who you trust to keep your own highest interests in mind.

At your age it is important to develop a healthy life style: body, mind, and soul. Ananda has excellent online resources for meditation classes and has centers in cities around India.

Here are some how-to-live suggestions for daily life:

  1. Do physical yoga: hatha yoga to help the body relax and to gain control over your body’s energies.
  2. Make sure your diet is a healthy one: avoiding excessive consumption of sugar, caffeine, and avoiding all alcohol. Fresh and freshly cooked vegetables and a good protein source (vegetarian is best, usually) are important.
  3. Exercise. At your age some strenuous exercise (running, swimming, fitness, etc.) is very important.
  4. Media. How many hours a day do you spend on a computer, tablet or smart phone? Movies? TV? What you watch and how many hours spent passively on media can cause problems.
  5. Sleep. Your sleep patterns should be regulated so that you get at least 7, perhaps better, 8, hours of sleep and do so between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 p.m. (at least not be going to bed midnight or later every night).
  6. Meditation. You should have a solid meditation and pranayam practice that is NOT excessive, but gentle. Ananda has online courses that are perfect for this. / I highly recommend developing more devotion in your life and in your meditation. There’s nothing better than chanting! (During the day AND as part of meditation). When you have the symptoms you describe, pray to God in some form dear to you (deity, guru, etc.) to ask how to respond or to give you the mental strength to re-direct your attention from these symptoms to a more devotional focus.
  7. Satsang. Be around those who are wise, kind, and spiritually mind. This includes your reading material and listening.

Blessings and joy to you!

Nayaswami Hriman

Mark
Germany

Question

Hello, i want to know how can i deal with intrusive thoughts. This is not an ordinary thoughts, i think this is my karma. One woman said to me that i wasnt very good in the past and now i am having these thoughts as a result of my past lifes. Most often they are demonic, it seems like someone else sends them to me, and exactly what i scare most. Also these thoughts condemns others, but i dont want to condem them. Please, give me any ideas how can i deal with them. Thank you!

Nayaswami Parvati

Nayaswami Parvati

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Mark,

Thank you for asking this important question. One of the best ways I know to deal with intrusive thoughts, especially those that are negative, is to strongly emphasize the light — in your thoughts, in your life, in the music you listen to, in the friends you associate with. As you live your life more consciously in an environment of light, you will find these negative thoughts losing power.

One of the things you don’t want to do is to “entertain” these thoughts. By this I mean don’t give them energy by thinking about them — why they are there, where they come from, what you did in the past to attract such thoughts, etc. Thinking about them tends to give them more energy.

An important thing to remember about thoughts is something that Paramhansa Yogananda said about them. He said that "thoughts are universally, not individually rooted.” What this means is that the level of consciousness you live on determines what kind of thoughts you will attract to yourself. By raising your level of consciousness, and you will change the kinds of thoughts that come to you. This is why emphasizing the light in your life is so important.

Does past karma from previous lives have an influence on your thoughts? Yes, certainly it does. This is because karma is the result of repeated actions resulting in a vortex of energy and, therefore, consciousness. The way we begin to dissolve our karma is to withdraw energy from these past actions and to begin to act in other, more uplifting, ways.

With strongly negative thoughts, always keep in mind that they are not your thoughts and that you are not a bad person for having them. Thoughts truly do live on levels of consciousness. Change your level of consciousness, and you will change your thoughts.

A warning about negative thoughts: They can have a strong magnetism about them; one that wants to keep you involved with them — thinking about them, etc. Resist doing this as much as possible, and strongly put your thoughts and energy in a more uplifted direction. Swami Kriyananda writes about an experience he had with this when he was living at Mt. Washington in Los Angeles. He said he fell into a negative mood one day. To get out of it, he put his mind and concentration strongly at the point between the eyebrows. He said that after only five minutes he felt his consciousness shift, and the negative mood, as well as the thoughts associated with them, went away.

I hope these ideas will be helpful to you and that by using them you will find your consciousness uplifted more and more toward the divine light.

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