What Do You Believe?

What you believe, on a fundamental level, about the nature of life matters. It affects everything you think, feel, and do. Each of us is born into a belief system of some kind and most of us embrace what we are born into without question until we begin to question it…or not. Some people never question what they have been taught by others. Some people begin questioning at a very young age. Others begin to question as they come into adolescence or young adulthood. Some wait until their midlife years.

Which is the best path? Whichever one you are on, dear heart, is the best path for you in this moment.

When I attended yoga teacher training, I was led to the teachings of Paramahansa Yogananda. He remains one of the sweetest influences in my journey to True Self, peace, and joy. Somewhere along the way, I read a story of him responding to one of his followers who was concerned about family members. She was so worried for their well-being and they didn’t listen when she tried to share all that she was learning about true spirituality, enlightenment. Yoganandaji was extremely loving with her as he explained that there was no need to worry. After all, we have more than one lifetime in which to “get it,” as I would say. As I remember from that story, he said that it takes many lifetimes to stop and think about people saying there is a God of some sort. Many more lifetimes are needed to being listening and perhaps embrace the concept of a higher power or God. Many more lifetimes to then expand beyond those concepts developed in organized religions and become open to even higher truths and, eventually, to expand into one’s own True Self and become enlightened. he gave her, and us, permission to trust the greater flow of life for those that we love and for those that we may hear about who seem so stuck in the dark ages or in what we have come to see as limiting belief systems.

His teachings bring me peace for myself as well. I no longer question or regret that I discovered yoga at the age of 42. I began meditating before that and yoga took me deeper into that practice immediately. I came to understand that my journey was and is perfect for me. Everyone’s journey is unique and sacred because all paths eventually lead home.

This is difficult to grasp, accept and embrace when we are looking at belief systems that create havoc and destruction. I must remind myself to stay in my own moment, live from the peace of my soul and trust that all that emanates out from me touches everyone and everything on this planet and beyond. I meditate and pray for love and peace to flow into every heart and mind. I focus on the process rather than on the behavior of others. I cannot change another person’s beliefs or behaviors. I can live mine and support the evolving journey of others. I can have compassion for those who do not yet see, who do not yet “get it.” I can weep with those who weep and support those called to create peace on a global scale, God bless them all truly and deeply. I can fulfill what I am called to in this moment, in my path, remembering that this world, this life and all that I am experiencing is transitory, temporary and only one small part of what I am all about.

What do you believe? Why are you here? What is unfolding in your present moment?

What do you believe? Are you present in your moment, your life? Do you honor your own path as sacred? Do you honor the path of others whether you understand it or not?

Whew. It’s a lot and yet it refines everything down to this moment. What do I believe about this moment and am I present with mySelf in it?

I love you and I honor your path as sacred. Be blessed, dear heart, for you are loved.

Aum shanti, peace.

Wave of the Sea

Paramahansa Yogananda came to the United States for the first time in 1920. His life and teachings are described in his book, Autobiography of A Yogi, published in 1946. It remains the classic foundation for yoga teachers, practitioners, and students around the world.

In Metaphysical Meditations (page 42) he writes, “I am no longer the wave of consciousness thinking itself separate from the sea of cosmic consciousness. I am the ocean of Spirit that has become the wave of human life.”

Ocean images are vivid and powerful. My son surfs and I am fascinated by the process of sitting on a board and silently waiting for the right wave to rise up and make itself known. This is living meditation. All awareness is focused on the rising and falling of the water, the pulse beat of the ocean. Each wave has its own personality and life force energy. Surfers wait and watch and read the waves, knowing the risks as well as the thrill of becoming a part of a wave when it rises, peaks and then blends back into its source. They honor and respect the power of the ocean and the presence of each wave – though they absolutely love the ones that come with the strength and intensity to lift them toward the sky.

Yogananda saw human life as a wave that has emerged out of its Source, the greater and higher sea of Consciousness often called God, Great Spirit, Creator. As a wave emerges, it takes on its own unique character and personality. As a human emerges into being, it takes on its own unique character and personality. As a wave ebbs, it returns to and becomes indistinguishable from its source – the sea. As a human life ebbs, it returns to and becomes indistinguishable from its Source – the sea of All That Is.

The wave is never separate from the sea. The spirit or soul of a human being is never separate from its Source. It has only emerged for a time in order to experience itself through the sentient form of a human being. Stop. Say this out loud: a human be-ing. Say this out loud another way: a soul being human.

I Am a Spiritual Being (a Soul) who is currently having a human experience. I am experiencing life primarily through my senses: hearing, seeing, tasting, smelling, touching. This is my opportunity to manifest my True Self (Love) through this human body. I am not here to learn how to be spiritual. I am here to learn how to be human while remembering that my body does not separate me from my Source, Divine Love.

So, until this wave of my Soul returns to its Source, I think I’ll ride high and long and let it be fun!

“I am no longer the wave of consciousness thinking itself separate from the sea of cosmic consciousness. I am the ocean of Spirit that has become the wave of human life.”