How do you truly reach a level in life where there is joy and freedom of mind? We get stuck in so many things that seem so unimportant. So many people doing the same thing over and over... When will we stop trying to grow when the "growth" is actually making us fall further asleep. I dont know the question as much as the feeling... a sadness for all. Where is the peace and the stillness and the knowing. To see is not result of sighy yet we are given eyes. Do we use them?

—Jessica, USA


Dear Jessica,

Happy New Year, Jessica. It is always good to think of others and pray that all see the light and change their ways. But it is also good after doing that, to concentrate on your own spiritual needs. When you clear away all that is holding you back, clear yourself from your ego attachments, etc, you will see the light and attain that level of joy and freedom you want. In this state you can help others a great deal.

Look at the life of an avatar, such as Paramhansa Yogananda. He came in 1920 to the US and gave teachings that are even now transforming peoples’ lives. Since he has always been in that calm, joyful state, one with God, he was able to channel the light of God to all whom he met and to give teachings for all who are interested.

One has to pick the teachings that feel right for them and then dedicate themselves to doing the practices that are given. The Expanding Light Retreat, Ananda’s guest facility in Nevada City, California, offers guidance and teachings to their guests to help them with their spiritual practices. Gaining determination and focus is very important. Having these tools are invaluable. I recommend these teachings very strongly to those who want joy and calmness in their lives.

Joy to you, Seva