Two Steps of Meditation


With experience of walking on spiritual path it seems like it involves two processes. First is calming the mind and Second raising spiritual consciousness.

I have found that chanting like Guru gita,

Vishnusahasram stotram, Rudram are very beneficial in calm the mind and then once the mind is calm and subdued Kriya yoga pranayama practice is invaluable to increase consciousness.

Kindly validate if i correct in my experience along the path.

—Aasheesh Chhabra, India


Dear Aasheesh,

The two steps you describe are well-understood and accurate. There are other ways of expressing it, but essentially we need to internalize our consciousness and then raise that consciousness to the kutastha (spiritual eye).

The means by which one accomplishes this two-step process will vary — and are perhaps infinite so far as methods and objects of focus. Yogananda taught the Hong-Sau method of watching the breath (with the Hong-Sau mantra) as a way of internalizing our consciousness. You are using other mantras or sacred prayers to do the same.

Yogananda also taught the Energization Exercises so that the body (not just the mind) can also relax and withdraw inwardly.

I assume that you have received diksha (taken discipleship) to Paramhansa Yogananda and the Self-realization line of avatars? I would, accordingly, recommend that for the purpose of deepening your attunement to them as vehicles or representatives of the Infinite Spirit that you focus on the methods given to you by the guru.

We sometimes mistake the path for the goal of the path, especially in today’s technology-centric world. There are many mantras, prayers, and meditation techniques, but the best one is what hastens one’s spiritual development. And such development is not the product only of willpower, self-effort or the power of mantra alone. The consciousness of the guru is the most important factor: greater than any method or technique given.

Remember: we are seeking higher consciousness (in fact, ultimately, samadhi). Only through consciousness can this be achieved. It is only our relatively materialistic bias that we focus perhaps excessively upon methodology and meditative or spiritual objects and formulas. They are important for us, but these techniques are but stepping stones to higher consciousness, transcendent of the body and the mind (as we know it). Okay?

Blessings and joy to you!
Nayaswami Hriman