For many years Paramhansa Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi has been a source of inspiration and guidance for me. Not only because of the wisdom, love, and joy that radiate from every page, but also because it has repeatedly served as a living channel to answer specific questions in my life.
When I’m at a loss for the proper course of action or the right understanding in a particular situation, I hold this book, pray to Master to speak to me, open it randomly three times, and see which passage stands out on each of the pages. Although this practice hasn’t worked in all my attempts, the number of times that I’ve received very specific answers to problems is amazing.
Last week we arrived in India for a three-month stay, and have once again been enjoying the depth of devotion and spiritual vibrancy that permeate this great country. After a satsang in Delhi, a devotee came up to Jyotish and me and handed each of us a copy of the Autobiography. He explained, “I bought these two copies today to give to friends, but then I felt strongly that I should give them to you with specific pages that each of you was to read.”
Given my practice of drawing guidance from the book, how could I not accept this as coming from Master? The following passage spoke to me from the page he suggested: “Can anything small or circumscribed ever satisfy the mind of India? By a continuous living tradition, and a vital power of rejuvenescence, this land has readjusted itself through unnumbered transformations.”
I felt that my Guru was helping me tune in more deeply with his beloved country. When Yoganandaji left his body on March 7, 1952, it was during a public event at which he was reciting his beautiful poem, “My India.” The last words he spoke in this lifetime were its concluding lines:
Where Ganges, woods, Himalayan caves, and men breathe God.
I am hallowed; my body touched that sod!
Is this sacredness confined only to the soil of India? I believe that the deep spirituality here is a part of the soul nature of each one of us. Whenever we strive to allow our consciousness to soar in freedom, and stand reverentially with head bowed and heart open to God, we, too, touch that holy sod.
With love in God and Guru,