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Sangita
India

Question

Namashkar! We have grown up learning that a man of strength in character apologizes when he wrongs someone. He is not scared or ashamed to say sorry to make the victim feel better. On the contrary, recently I read an article in which American psychologists say that apologizing may not be a good idea always as we give away our power to the victim. It may lead to lowering of our self esteem. Which one holds more truth?

Nayaswami Hriman

Nayaswami Hriman

Ananda Seattle

Answer

Dear Sangita,

Those “American psychologists” may have had particular circumstances in mind, but, in general, it IS the right thing to apologize (and make amends, where possible). Under most circumstances there will be no DISadvantage to do so and every moral and spiritual reason to “do the right thing.”

jayantkumar dhruv
india

Question

Why should we believe in God ?

And what is God ? And who created God ?

Nayaswami Pranaba

Nayaswami Pranaba

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Jayantkumar,

These are deep questions!

I think anyone who has any sensibility realizes that there must be something beyond the finitude of what can be experienced through the senses. Having an understanding of the possibility of infinity, naturally leads one to tune into what we call “God”. It isn’t that we should believe in God, but rather it’s important to experience expanded consciousness, which is simply another description of God.

September 1
2014

Sunil P
India

Question

Hello!

Swami Kriyananda said that everything is predestined and all the free will we have is to seek God or reject him. If we are already predestined, where does the freedom to seek God fit into this, and isn’t that the violation of predestination? And if we make a choice here, aren’t we altering the future and so called predestination? Will that not disturb God’s plan? How will he know the future then? SK said that if nothing was predestined, how can God know the future. Please help.

Nayaswami Parvati

Nayaswami Parvati

Ananda Village

Answer

This issue of karma and free will is a complex one. If we try to over-think it, and to “figure it all out” then it only becomes more confusing! What is important to understand is what you can actually do about it. Here are some things I have understood on this topic.

paige
usa

Question

Is starting a family a mistake on the spiritual path? My sadhana is much shorter than it was before I had a child, and I sometimes wonder if we made the right choice. Yet I do feel closer to God than ever even though the meditation portion of my life has decreased. Could you lend some insight to this?

Nayaswami Hriman

Nayaswami Hriman

Ananda Seattle

Answer

Dear Friend,

The results of your decision reveal to you a greater depth and Atunement even in spite of having less time to meditate. God can come to us whenever we are, for God is our very Self. As our hearts are attuned to the divine presence we will feel that presence in ourselves, in our children, in every moment.

Indrani
India

Question

If despite not so good behavior, one has a soft corner for someone due to past connections, is it a weakness and attachment, or is it true love?

Nayaswami Seva

Nayaswami Seva

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Indrani,

Choose always to love. But understand that love needs to come from a higher source, such as your guru or God. I have found that we do not really know what love is as it gets all tangled with emotions and past experiences. It is best to always turn toward God and draw his light and love into your heart and spiritual eye. You are ready then to give love to all.

valerie
usa

Question

I work in a place that has people who influence my old bad habits. But the job pays well and I need to support my family. How can I distance myself so that these tendencies are not activated?

Kristy Fassler-Hecht

Kristy Fassler-Hecht

Ananda Maine

Answer

Dear Valerie,

I understand you are trying to put some unhealthy or harmful habits behind you and those you work with still engage in those same diversions and perhaps encourage you to do the same. Your resolve is being tested!

Here are 5 suggestions to help you:

Rajesh
India

Question

Dear Sir, Pranam,

I have been following Yogananda and Babaji from the past 6 years and I am a Kriyaban. Sir, throughout my life my conduct has been honest and innocent like a child. Yet on many occasions, people have cheated me, badly affecting my morale. I have lost not only my peace, and money, but have lost faith as well.

Sir, when I don’t do anything wrong, why again and again do I get trapped and something goes drastically wrong? Is it because of very bad Karma of mine in my past life?

Pranam,

Rajesh

Nayaswami Pranaba

Nayaswami Pranaba

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear Rajesh,

Karma definitely comes into play with everything that happens to us. The important thing is that in this lifetime we endeavor to make the choices to overcome these tendencies that draw to us the experiences that you have described.

The best way to overcome one’s karma, and to neutralize the effect other people have in your life, is to meet whatever karma comes to you calmly and pleasantly. Concentrate not your problems with others, but more on generating a strong flow of positive energy.

PNG
USA

Question

I have always struggled with cannabis addiction. I understand that this habit poisons not just our will power but also the lungs and the brain. Any addiction is counter to the teachings and the ray of the Masters. It is a hindrance to the seeker and inner freedom. In meditation I once felt the Guru say, “I can’t work through you when you smoke.” Could it be any more clear? Do you have suggestions?

Nayaswami Gyandev

Nayaswami Gyandev

Ananda Village

Answer

Dear PNG,

You’re quite right about the damage that this habit can wreak—physically, mentally and spiritually. And I agree with you: what the Guru said couldn’t be clearer. You know what you need to do. The question is, Will you do it? I suggest a few steps:

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