Watching a friend leave the spiritual path


What is the best way to deal with seeing a loved one slowly leaving the spiritual path?

Part of me feels like there is something i should say or do to help him, but most of me sees that it is his choice and free will. he doesn't belong to me but he has given himself into the arms of the guru; so should i trust that master will eventually lead him out of this delusion? or is that being too passive? i am confused and it is a big distraction to my own spiritual efforts of devotional meditation.

—tyler, usa


Dear Tyler,

It is indeed difficult to watch a friend leave the spiritual path. It sounds from your letter as if you and your friend are both disciples of Yogananda, or perhaps another master. I think one good approach would be to take this situation to your guru. At the end of your meditation practice, visualize the Guru. Feel as if you are holding your friend up into the Guru’s blessings. Ask the Guru to bless your friend.

It is best not to get too verbal at this time, but to understand that the One to whom you are praying has the full picture. Even though God understands all, it’s an important help to your friend for you to ask for blessings for him.

It would also be helpful to hold up the question to this Light: Is there anything I can do or say to help him? See if any images or words come to mind. The inspiration of what to do or say may not come while you are sitting in meditation. It may come when you are washing dishes or driving to work.

This approach will help to connect you with your Higher Self and, I hope, with a sense either of direction or trust. I hope it will relieve the mental confusion you are feeling now, and can provide the best help you can give to your friend at this time.

In divine friendship,

Nayaswami Anandi