Spiritual Growth, Yoga Philosophy

Eternal Life, True Liberty & Attainment of Perpetual Happiness

The Declaration of Independence, one of the crown jewels of the Western Civilization, is a collection of ideas that were far ahead of their time. The very first line of the Preamble asserts the existence of the unalienable rights: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with … Read More

Guru-Disciple Relationship, Spiritual Growth

Similarities Between Attaining Self-Realization and the End of COVID Lockdown

I have always wanted to know the exact date that I would become Self-realized just as we would all love to know the exact date the coronavirus lockdown is going to go away. This made me come up with a delightful analogy: If we think of Self-realization as the ending of the BIG lockdown — the soul being locked up … Read More

Spiritual Growth

How to Win the “Best Actor Award” in the Cosmic Movie

A significant technological advance during the early years of Paramhansa Yogananda’s life was the motion-picture. Although Paramhansa Yogananda advised his students to not waste time watching too many movies, he often used a movie analogy to explain the central, yet difficult to grasp, yogic teaching that this Creation itself is like one big movie — a play of light and … Read More

Spiritual Growth

From “selfie” to “Selfie” Through Meditation

Swami Kriyananda would often tell his students that a yogi’s true goal is to get the little “self” out of the picture so that he can focus on the divine “Self” within. By the little “self” Swamiji meant our egoic identity, built around the physical body, the personality and the “bundle of self-definitions” that egoic identity brings in its wake: … Read More

Spiritual Growth

The Book of Nature — What the Yogi Can Learn from the Ripening of Fruit

Paramhansa Yogananda taught that this world is a school to which we are sent to learn the key lessons of life. He would often say, “This world was made for our education and our entertainment.” Yoganandaji was a living example of this teaching.  He delighted in visiting new places and appreciated the unique and positive traits among the different cultures … Read More

Spiritual Growth, Yoga Philosophy

The Second Pension

Among the many thrilling spiritual possibilities shared in the Autobiography of a Yogi, surely one of the most captivating is the idea of a “second pension.” Paramhansa Yogananda learns about this pension from Swami Pranabananda, aka the “saint with two bodies,” when he visits the holy city of Benares at the age of twelve. The exchange between the exalted swami … Read More

Spiritual Growth, Spiritualizing Relationships

Begin Now to Prepare for Christmas

By Brahmachari Sagar For students of Paramhansa Yogananda all over the world, the focal point of the Christmas celebration is the annual eight-hour Christmas meditation. Yoganandaji started this tradition in 1936 as an opportunity for all seekers to experience deep communion with Christ in the cradle of their meditation-stilled hearts. Will Christ come? While we prepare in the spirit of … Read More

Meditation

Which Is More Relaxing: Sleep or Meditation?

We all know that meditation, as well as sleep, are very similar in their benefits. They offer deep relaxation, joy, and a release (if only temporary) from the incessant demands of life. It is perhaps only natural then that we should ask the question: Which of these two—sleep or meditation—offer the better benefit? Let us see what Paramhansa Yogananda has … Read More

Yoga Philosophy

Shiva: The Perfected Yogi Whose Energy Flows “Down and Out!”

Lord Shiva, as the Adi (first) yogi, is revered by his devotees as the embodiment of yogic perfection and as the giver of yoga science to mankind. Depictions of him beautifully portray the signs of complete yoga-mastery: his two eyes are half closed in meditation, while the all-seeing eye of intuition is open in his forehead. The snake garlanded around … Read More