Three Different Questions

Question

I have a few question that may be a bit strange. As Yogananda is an avatar, can he communicate with animals, plants and insects? If you feel a very strong connection to a country lets say France but you have never been in France could that mean in a past life you were living in France or were French? And how do you get rid of doubts. I believe in God and that Yogananda is my guru but still there is a part of me that can`t help having doubts?

—RO, Europe

Answer

Dear RO, The answer to your first question is yes. Here is an example from The New Path: “[Swami Kriyananda relates] …one day we were moving a delicate but rather heavy tropical plant into position on the hillside. Our handling evidently was too rough, for Master cried out, ‘Be careful what you are doing. Can’t you feel? It’s alive!’ His sensitivity to all things living inspired sensitivity from them in return. Not only people and animals, but even plants seemed to respond to his feelings for them. His gardens flourished. Tropical mangoes and bananas grew at Mt. Washington, where the climate is not conducive to their survival. Miss Sahly tells of one day watching what she calls a ‘rose devotee’ that kept turning in its vase to face Master as he moved about the room. ‘Plants,’ Master explained, ‘have a degree of consciousness.’ Above all, like every sentient being, they respond to love.”

For your second question, the answer is that you have very likely lived many lives in France, or wherever it is you feel strong connections. You might want to read my novel Through Many Lives which explains more about how we move through many lifetimes lived in many different places.

Finally, it is a very natural thing to have doubts. Yogananda’s advice about this is to move forward in the positive direction which seems to attract you the most. By being in that positive moment of energy, your doubts will soon drop away — especially as you begin to see firsthand the ways God and Guru work in your life. It’s unmistakable!

Another example: Yogananda often told people who had doubts about being his disciple that: “…if you feel an attraction toward me and the teachings of this path, it would be good for you to follow it, for although, of course, it is not the only path to God-realization, still it is a very effective path — it works! And my promise to you is that if it is not your true path, then I will lead you to the one which is right for you.” This is a win-win situation. Do your best, pray, trust, and press forward. You will be guided!