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shiffali
india

Question

Namaste,

I am not able to understand what is the basis of relationship in this world? every time i feel some guy is suitable for me, he ditches me in the most horrible way known and i have always been truthful in all my relations. Is it karma or my ignorance that i am not able to see through people as they are? How can i develop this judgement for others so that i am protected in future?

thanx

Nayaswami Diksha

Nayaswami Diksha

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Shiffali,

The spiritual goal of human relationships is to help us get closer to God.

When someone is drawn to you, it is the result of your magnetism. It is not always easy to understand your own magnetism, but daily practice of meditation and daily constructive introspection can help you. Through these practices you will get to know yourself better, and begin to understand why these things have been happening to you. Then you will see more clearly the direction in which you need to change. All the while, pray to God to help you understand what kind of energy you are putting out that keeps drawing to you the wrong sort of men, and how you can change it. Also pray to God for the strength to make the changes that you need to make.

Here is a page where you can learn how to meditate. There is a video and written instruction as well.

I also recommend that you read Paramhansa Yogananda’s book, How to Love and Be Loved — also published as Spiritual Relationships in America. It will give you a much deeper understanding of human relationships.

Finally, it can be difficult to change your magnetism while you are in a relationship, so I suggest that you take a break from relationships for a while, until you can gain a better perspective on yourself and your relationships.

Blessings to you,

Nayaswami Diksha

Siddharth Patel
India

Question

Is there anything wrong for a beginner to worship 'OM' as a form of God? I am a beginner. I am not interested in developing devotion towards any particular physical form of God. I am interested in Jnana Yoga rather than Bhakti Yoga. So is it alright to worship OM as a form of God by a beginner?

Nayaswami Parvati

Nayaswami Parvati

Ananda Village

Answer

AUM is wonderful, the sound of the creation of the universe! But, as a beginner, you might want to approach meditation and the spiritual teachings with more of a sense of exploration. Otherwise you are determining from your beginning understanding of them what they have to offer you. It would be like coming to a professional to learn to play the game of tennis, but determining how you want to play before you even know much about it.

In the beginning of my own spiritual life and meditation practice, I also was drawn (by my mind and intellect) to a more gyana (also spelled "jnana") type of approach. But it was so dry and abstract that I didn’t really engage seriously in the practices. It wasn’t until I found a more balanced teaching that things began to fall into place. Without this I would have given up the practices completely — yet again.

Paramhansa Yogananda’s guru, Sri Yukteswar, who was considered a Gyanavatar (incarnation of gyana) during his lifetime, said that you cannot take one step along the spiritual path without developing the heart’s natural love. It’s not a matter of bhakti or gyana, it’s a matter of doing what works. And it’s not a matter of what we "worship," but of what we experience and become. So you don’t so much want to worship AUM, as to "become" AUM. It’s not enough to hear the sound of AUM. You need to eventually, through your deepening meditation practice, become one with it.

On the path of yoga, what matters most is your own direct experience in meditation. To gain this direct experience you have to commit to practicing, with devotion, the meditation techniques that will give this to you. Without having this, the ideas we have about spirituality, and how we relate to it, are only that — interesting ideas.

The meditation techniques that Ananda offers, based on Paramhansa Yogananda teachings, are very good for doing this. You might want to explore them through our Ananda Centers in India. You can find out more about this at the Ananda Sangha India website.

I hope these thoughts will be helpful for you, and I wish you many blessings in your practices.

Nayaswami Parvati

Narayan
India

Question

I know some theory about Karma. As per my understanding, the fruits whether good are bad that we experience in this life are the results of the past lives.

Having said that, If somebody got murdered even if he is an innocent person and done no harm to anyone in this life, how to know whether this is a cause or effect? i.e. Is the murdered done some bad in his past life OR the murderer will experience the effects of this incident in his next life. Is it the beginning or the ending of Karma?

Nayaswami Gyandev

Nayaswami Gyandev

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Narayan,

What you’re asking is, “Do unpleasant things ever happen to us without our having caused them, with the result that our karmic bank account shows a positive balance?” I suspect we all would like it to be true, so that when unpleasantness happens to us, the blow would be softened by the knowledge of a balancing pleasant event in the future.

But the simple answer is no: Everything that happens to us — pleasant or unpleasant — is the result of our past actions. In your example, the murder victim will have done something in the past (this life or a previous life) that has brought this upon him/her in this life. And the murderer will have to suffer the consequences of his/her crime, either in this life or a future life. So the event is the completion (partial or full) of a karma for the victim, and the beginning of a karma for the criminal.

This is a simple answer, because karma is a highly complex issue. For example, some people who die in accidents don’t necessarily have the karma to die; rather, they don’t have strong enough karma to live, and their karma to live gets overwhelmed by others' karma to die in that accident.

Blessings,

Gyandev

Tom
Lithuania

Question

Hello. I have a fears of darkness, all those dark energies, beings from lower astral plane, etc. How can i transform them into the presence of God? I also noticed the more closer i get to God the more these unreasonable fears appears. Give me some powerful prayers or any other techniques to feel God’s presence immeadiately when i need it most. How can i get free of these fears? Thank you very much.

Nayaswami Hriman

Nayaswami Hriman

Ananda Seattle

Answer

Dear Tom,

In the presence of God (as joy, light or love) nothing and no one can harm you. Happiness is like a light from which all shadow must flee! Be joyful; help others; bless others. Chant God’s name aloud or silently; chant Aum! Here’s a powerful mantra to use whenever you feel the need: Aum, Hring Kleeng Krishnaya namaha. You can also chant the Trinity as "Aum, Tat, Sat" and as you do move your arms in opposite directions meeting (palms touching) in front of you and behind. Write Aum on your pillow at night before sleeping.

When feeling "attacked" place your thumbs in the shape of a cross and send light all around you as a protection as you chant.

Most of all, call upon God, Christ, or one of the masters whenever you are in need and make a strong effort to be positive and mentally chanting throughout the day. Spend time with others of stronger spiritual magnetism. Meditate daily: with eyes open if necessary and never in complete darkness.

I pray that you be freed of these fears. The nearer you are to the presence of God, the more protected you feel. God can come to you as peace, as joy, as light and as love. Manifest these qualities in your own consciousness and you will immediately be closer to God.

Blessings always and in the Light,

Nayaswami Hriman

Mark
Germany

Question

Hello, thank you for brilliant answer.Just a few very important questions for me. When i try to put my concentration on spiritual eye, i feel tension on my forehead and cant mentally find that point between the eyebrows, what wrong im doing? Im new in meditation, does only Hong-sau for the first months is ok? How can i concentrate on spiritual eye, breathing, mantra and looking upward at the same time?It seems too hard. When i say mantra but dont understand the meaning of thewords its ok?Thanks

Nayaswami Diksha

Nayaswami Diksha

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Mark,

When you experience tension on your forehead while gazing at the spiritual eye, it usually a result of either trying to position the eyes awkwardly, or a long-time habit of squeezing your eyebrows together when you try to concentrate.

When you close your eyes, turn your eyes slightly upward, as if looking at a peak of a mountain in the distance, slightly above the horizon level. This should not involve any strain. Feel as if your eyes are resting in this upward position, not as if you’re trying to look into the distance.

Here is how to look slightly upward with no strain:

Sit up right, and extend right arm forward, and make a fist with the hand. Bring thumb up, and raise arm 2"-3" above the horizon. Gaze at your thumbnail, then close your eyes and visualize that thumbnail. Bring arm down. Your gaze should be out and up about arm’s length.

When you first start to practice the Hong-Sau technique, it takes time to get used to doing all parts of the technique (just like all the different things you have to do when driving a car), but gradually it becomes natural and easy. Be patient.

The mantra Hong-Sau means: I am Spirit. The mantra has power in it, and it has impact on your energy. You don’t need to focus on the meaning of the words; it’s the vibration of the mantra that will help you. Just keep practicing it.

Please visit this page for more information about meditation.

Blessings,

Diksha

srija
india

Question

Is marriage predestined? Is there any way to escape a marriage? Do we have the choice to choose our partner?

Nayaswami Gyandev

Nayaswami Gyandev

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Srija,

Paramhansa Yogananda once said, “It takes a master to understand karma.” The ordinary person would only tie his or her brain into knots, trying to figure it out.

So don’t worry about whether marriage (or anything else) is predestined. Simply try your best to align your will with God’s will, then act accordingly. That is the highest expression of free will: living in freedom from bondage to ego, to desires.

Whether the marriage is coming to you through your parents or through your own choice, you need to go inside and feel what is best, then do that best thing and leave the results in God’s hands. Yes, your decision may be karmically determined, but the real question is, Who is running your life: God or ego? If it’s God, then you’re on the right track.

Blessings,

Gyandev

SJ
India

Question

Aum Guru,

I know that what I am about to ask is not a good thing for a person on the spiritual path( I am a kriyaban).But, my lack of hair is really affecting my self-esteem and I feel depressed. Can you provide me with a spiritual solution like a prayer chant for thick healthy hair?. Thank you.

P.S-please do not publish my name on the site. Thank you once again.

Mary Kretzmann

Mary Kretzmann

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear SJ,

Thank you for your question. Ultimately we must understand that we are made of God’s light, but it is natural to want to look one’s best. You do not mention if you are male or female, or young or old. Is your "lack of hair" severe enough to get in the way of marriage or career? These days it is fashionable for men to shave the head, so that is why I ask you if you are male or female.

Here are a few ideas to help you:

  • Practice gratitude for the things that are healthy and well in your bodily temple. Do you have healthy eyes, ears, skin, feet and hands and internal organs? If so, give thanks for the miracle of wellness that is happening in those areas of your health. Be grateful every day.
  • From this grateful attitude, you can then visualize that every atom and cell of your being is well in God’s Light. Know that this is already true in your astral body.
  • Please also do this affirmation every day for general wellness and lifting of your spirits.
  • From this attitude of wellness you can pray to be guided to an answer, and then leave it in God’s hands. Be at peace. There are many solutions to help one’s hair to be thicker, in Ayurveda, Chinese medicine, and in western herbal traditions. Let prayer and gratitude guide you to find the solution.
  • Finally, determine to be at peace with your situation, no matter what the outcome. Be not only at peace, but be in full joy and love. Be grateful for every good thing.
  • Write something in a gratitude journal, every single day.
  • And if still you find you are regretting your general lack of hair, please look up Nicholas James Vujicic. He is in his early 30’s and was born with no limbs. He said, “I never met a bitter person who was thankful, or a thankful person who was bitter.”
  • And consider getting an attractive wig or headscarves, etc. Make yourself as attractive as possible, so you can then forget about it. Do your best and leave the results in God’s hands.

And last but not least, find a way to be of compassionate service to others, such as the poor orphans or widows in India. (Ananda India has recently started a trust to help the less fortunate.)

Please do not feel that I am saying this in order to minimize your feelings about your hair, or lack thereof, but rather to help you find the pathway to joy in the midst of this karma. I hope and pray you will be deeply blessed with Guru’s grace.

Blessings,

Mary Kretzmann

Director, Ananda Healing Prayer Ministry

Sanjay
USA

Question

Hi,

Is going almost breathless and having out of body experiences during meditation better than feeling calmness and inner peace after meditation?

Puru (Joseph) Selbie

Puru (Joseph) Selbie

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Sanjay,

Yogananda used to say, "Whatever comes of itself, let it come." He used this phrase to describe the right attitude for dealing with what life brings you — failure or success, poverty or wealth, sickness or health — just let it come but do not let what comes define you or determine your happiness. If you live centered within your Self then whatever does come cannot change your inner happiness.

I think this is also the right attitude for what you experience in meditation — "Whatever comes of itself, let it come." — don’t deliberately seek any particular kind of experience. One genuine experience of Divine consciousness is no "better" than another. Instead, concentrate on becoming still in body and mind, and offering yourself to God. What you experience in meditation will grow and change over time.

In the Autobiography of a Yogi, Yogananda wrote that God is "ever-new Joy." Don’t become fixed on what you want to experience. Let God’s blissful ever-newness beguile you. Let the guru decide what experiences you need.

Warm regards,

Puru (Joseph) Selbie

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