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On retreat at Kipukamaluhia, South Point
[Last April, students from SRV Hawaii on the Big Island met for a weekend with Babaji to focus deeply on the inner teachings of Karma Yoga. A few notes are presented here.]
Every disease, every suffering, starts in the mind. You sing around the camp fire, "Michael row the boat ashore." What shore are you talking about? The shore of rebirth? You have been rowing there for lifetimes. But what shore are your angels, prophets, messengers, and Avatars pointing to? The shore of transcendence. Get rid of the disease of rebirth in ignorance.
Sri Krishna states, "no one realizes the Truth without renouncing Sankalpa," mental projection from the ignorant mind. In such projections we have been imagining God as everything from gods to animals, nature, people, etc. -- But God never transforms, never embodies.
All the Indian Darshanas tell you to extract your consciousness from nature. If you remain in a bath too long your skin will wrinkle. The eternal bath of maya, too, will wrinkle your skin -- that means old age. Get free of it; practice Yoga, union. People nowadays say they follow Yoga, but they ignore Yoga's directive called Kaivalya - isolation from Nature -- and engage in asanas. Do you really want union with the body and nature? They decay and die.....
What is Maya? Nama rupa desha kala nimita (name, form, space, time, causality) -- this describes everything that gives mankind problems. Brahman, or Atman, your true Nature, is free of these.
The element ether and the sense of hearing -- these are the most subtle of the gross elements and senses. Om signifies the highest and best of ethers and audibility. I speak it and you hear it.
Sadhana, spiritual discipline, does not reveal the Self; it just purifies the mind. Enlightenment will dawn naturally after this is accomplished.
Deep sleep is the samadhi of ordinary people. It is the only time when an ordinary soul meditates. The problem with this is the lack of focused awareness in deep sleep. The mind is all diffused, and a veil of ignorance has fallen over consciousness.
Manas, dual mind, creates the worlds, but intellect drags you around them, and the ego, ahamkara, does the enjoying and suffering. The sheath of intellect, vijnanamayakosha, is where the sense of agency is. They say the Intellect is the upadhi of the Atman. When pure, Atman reflects best in the intellect. It might as well be the Atman's very body.
In the West we have been looking at cause and effect in matter, but rarely in the mind. That is why few know the laws of karma yoga.
[During the Spring Retreat in Hawaii at Kipukamaluhia, Babaji presented a new chart entitled, "Cause and Effect in the Mind," that delineates the effect that ignorant thoughts and actions have at different levels of the psycho-physical being. "Ignorant thoughts and actions" encompasses all thoughts and actions that do not arise from a state of equanimity. Put another way, these are thoughts and actions with the subtle or not so subtle intent to gain pleasure or avoid pain.]
- increases the tendency of over-sensitivity
- heightens a false sense of security
- breeds attachment to weakness and pity
- ignites anger and other passions
- strengthens the bond of duality
- exacerbates the problem of arrogance
- increases mental imbalance and delusion
- causes obsession with matter and objects
- fixes awareness on mind rather than Soul (causes brooding)
- plays on false hopes and hidden fears
- advances curiosity in the occult powers (Babaji's comment: when any inkling of something spiritual occurs, we want to fasten it to the metaphysical or occult)
- invites dalliance with illusory perceptions
- contributes to pride of knowledge
- allows the birth of misconceptions
- fosters the ego's notion of doership and agency
- hampers the need and desire for study (Babaji's comment: You've spent lifetimes meditating on relativity, now spend one lifetime meditating on Reality.)
- stymies crucial ideological conclusions. (Babaji's comment: You find holes in your knowledge and yet you forget that the saints and seers have stated their conclusions about the nature of Reality and relativity based upon their own direct experience.)(Question: What if I make a mistake, a wrong conclusion? Babaji: If you don't make a conclusion then you will not know the error in it. Take a chance. Make the commitment and if an error shows, adjust.)
- seeds doubt and inadvertence in the mind
- enforces a false belief in relativity
- divides and weakens one's convictions
- deposits subtle samskaras in the mind
- undermines the truth of formlessness
- promotes religious narrowness
- resists the soul's turn toward peace (Babaji's comment: Ignorant thoughts and actions will keep you in a state of restlessness and discontent.)
Karma Yoga is the philosophy of work:
- work as worship
- labor as love
- service as sacrifice
What have you to gain? You are the Atman. Everything has come out of you. But people seem to have to prove it to themselves by works.
Things that reproduce themselves are seeking to make themselves eternal in a non-eternal world - like Raktabija, the asura who received the boon in which each drop of his blood that touched the earth would create a clone of himself. Kali just lapped up his blood in midair and Durga slew him! He should have realized his eternal nature rather than trying to be eternal in the finite realm.
Sadhana, spiritual practice, are the details you set up for Enlightenment. It is like the Jai Ma Music concerts we would do that included a concert, puja and a meal. There were countless details to set in place for that one event. Do not focus on the result or you will miss setting up all the details.
Speaking of sadhana and faith, Holy Mother would say, "If you take a train to Benares at night you arrive the next morning, but you never saw the countryside." You have to walk the path with faith and determination, despite not seeing everything. Everything along the way is shrouded in darkness anyway. This darkness is karma and maya, and also immature and mature awakenings. Just walk the path -- move through it.