You are not what others see in you. You are what God sees in you.
-- Light and Sound on the Path -- A Digest of Spiritual Quotes, Sant Mat Satsang Discourses, and Announcements
Rumi: "If Light is in your heart, you will find your way home."
"Always respect time. Time gone shall never come back again. Realize the importance of the present and benefit from it to the maximum. Human life is a process of transition from mortal consciousness to God-consciousness. Utilize each and every breath in the recital of God's Name." ("Spiritual Gems", Shri Anandpur Publication)
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A million speak of love, yet how few know; true love is not to lose remembrance even for an instant. It can only be called love, if you yearn for the Lord in the same way as a man is yearning for air, when he is drowning and fighting for his life under the water. You can only be said to have a thirsty heart if you can drink the whole ocean and your lips will remain dry like a desert. Only such blessed soul will reach the highest goal of life.
When the soul begins to awake from its deep slumber, no worldly forces can undo with the tears and yearning of the heart. At that blessed moment the life takes a turning point and the search for the Lord starts. It is the Lord from within our own heart calling us back home. From that very moment the destination of the soul is fixed. The cry of the heart will not stop until the goal of the heart is reached and the union with the Lord is accomplished.
-- Lars Jensen, from, "With Cries from the Heart, the Search for a True Guru Begins"
So spirituality starts within your own heart. It is like a wildfire that has caught into flames in the heart -- like the fire in the forest, nobody on earth can extinguish it, it will go on and on. This wildfire burns all the desires of the world and makes everything of this world appear dry and empty. The only thing that remains in the heart is the thirst for the water of life and the yearning for the Lord. This yearning for the Lord should be our rolling passion of life, and it should be just as strong as the hungry yearns for food and the thirsty yearn for water. Even God Himself looks for such a soul. Where there is fire, oxygen will come to help. Where there is a burning heart who yearns for the Lord, help will also come. So you only need develop such a condition, and you do not need to look for God, because God Himself will come after you. The blind one can not find the hand of the seeing one. Only the seeing one can take the hand of the blind one and lead him to the right place. So He selects us. The God Power from within will draw such a soul to the feet of a Competent Guru, just as happened to the young boy Ramanugrah Lal (Maharshi Mehi).
Pray to God that He may come to you, because this world is a jungle of so-called masters. It is almost impossible to find the true Guru by our own effort. After all you can not find Him, if He doesn't want to be found. Only He can find you. Only the seeing one can find the blind one, never it can be the opposite. So make a prayer to God that He will come to you!
But if you have a thirsty heart which holds you awake all night, then the God Power from within your own self will draw you to the right place where the true Guru is to be found. So all that is needed is a thirsty heart, because even God Himself looks for such a Soul.
So Spirituality is very simple indeed. You only take away your attention from the world and instead direct it to God. Spirituality is just as simple as that.
-- Lars Jensen, from, "With Cries from the Heart, the Search for a True Guru Begins"
A great Master by the name of Huzur Baba Sawan Singh was once asked, "How long does it take you to go to Sach Khand (the Spiritual Realm, Sat Lok, Heaven)"? He closed his eyes for fifteen seconds, and then opened them again, saying, "Just that long". We're already in heaven if we did but know it. This is the real Secret of Secrets.
Mystic Verses by Swami Achyutanand Ji Maharaj. I offer my humblest obeisance at his lotus feet and dedicate to him the following translated verse (taken from the latest edition of his book "Satsang Bhajanavali"
O Guru, kindly bless me with the gift of your bhakti. |
May I shun bad company and keep Satsang (noble company) always; kindly accept my humble prayer. ||
I am drowning in the ocean of mundane existence; pull me out holding my arm. |
May my mind stay ever clear of defilements; please show favour unto me. ||
Holding your lotus feet I pray with folded hands; please take me under your shelter. |
If not much, O Lord, kindly take, says Achyut, some care of me. ||
-- Living One, Swami Achyutanand Ji Maharaj, from, "Satsang Bhajanavali"
The Word is the fundamental principle of all the religions. The difference lies in the extent to which their adepts ascended up the sound current or the Word.
When a Master initiates a soul he brings to that soul, at that moment, the ability to become conscious of this sound current. During all the millions of years we have been wandering around, lost and blind, we have forgotten our true selves and our Maker; we have lost the way (the sound current). Now it will be different. We are to meet our Creator through the sound current, which keeps creation in being.
"A sound is vibrating in the whole of creation. When you open your inner ear you will hear a continuous sound, which will lead you across all limitations of mind and matter. My Beloved is speaking to you all the time. Alas! you do not hear his Voice." -- Shah Niaz
When we first hear this wonderful sound it is very soft, but gradually it amplifies in volume, tone and character. In reality, our finer senses develop and we thereby appreciate it better. So long as the mind remains attached to the body and its desires, it cannot grasp the Word.
-- From, "Encyclopaedia of Saints of India, Volume 19: Radhasoami", By Dr. S.R. Bakshi and Dr. Sangh Mittra, Criterion Publications, New Delhi
Inner Guidance -- The Silence Speaks Volumes: "To be pure and still means to be open to purity and stillness -- as a result you can intuit the truth." "Detach yourself from what disturbs and distracts you, and be as pure as one who breathes in purity and emptiness. This state is the gateway to enlightenment -- It is the Way to Peace and Happiness." (Da Qin Nestorian Scripture -- Jesus Sutras)
"To be glorified art Thou, the Father Supreme, born of Thy First-born in the silence and tranquility of meditation." -- Saint Thomas in India, from, "The Song of Praise of Thomas the Apostle", translated from the Syriac in, Apocryphal Acts of the Apostles
"He who will drink from my mouth will become as I am. And I myself shall become he, and the hidden things shall be revealed to him." (Saying 108, Yeshua, Gospel of Thomas)
"We have come from the Light, where the Light has originated through itself...." (Saying 50, Yeshua, Gospel of Thomas)
"Who else is Christ but the Sound of God?" (Acts of John)
"Go on regularly with your practice, keeping your mind and senses undisturbed as far as possible; and trust in the mercy of the Supreme Father to grant you strength gradually as you advance. You progress inwardly daily; there is no such thing as retrograde movement." (Letters of Huzur Maharaj)
Bhakti is Essential For Successful Meditation Practice
"The practitioner who does Jap [simran, manas jap] sitting in a secluded place with theright method and immense love, becomes the excellent devotee." (Bhagirath Baba)
"Meditation saturated with adoration and love binds the Lord, who then reveals Himself in the striver's horizon of consciousness. Meditation enjoyed in with love and devotion pulls the Lord with a magnetic force, filling the aspirant with eternal bliss and peace. Filled with a divine elation, the devotee is lost in the ecstasy of trance. Divine experiences then come with a natural inevitability, only to the sincere devotee full of love." (Quest For Eternal Peace, Shri Paramhans Advait Mat)
"Eighty percent of success is showing up." -- Woody Allen
"Any minute we devote to meditation is to our credit and we definitely experience the effect of that meditation, in one way or another. Every effort that we put in meditation is a step forward. Even if we devote five minutes, it does us good. The Lord praises it. If you scratch a stone, you do make an impression on the hard stone howsoever little you may have scratched. So no matter how little time you devote to meditation, whether you achieve any result or not, is added to your credit. All attempts are appreciable. To form a habit is essential before you can learn to practice meditation." (Quest For Eternal Peace, Shri Paramhans Advait Mat)
"Enrich your mind and soul, so that you can live with peace and you can die with peace. To enrich your mind, satsang is essential, and to enrich your soul, you have to practice meditation." (Swami Ashutosh)
Importance of Saran (Taking Shelter Under the Protecting Care of the Supreme Being, the Merciful Lord of the Soul), By Huzur Maharaj, Prem Patra, Volume One
A devotee should consider Radhasoami Dayal [Ra-Dha-Swa-Mi, Merciful Lord of the Soul, Ocean of Love and All-Consciousness] as the Supreme Lord, Omnipotent, All-merciful and the Prime Mover of everything, and be should seek the protection of His Holy Feet in such a way that, whatever he may do, the result of it all may be left to His Mauj or Holy Will. Whatever be His Mauj, he should be pleased with it. As far as possible, he should devote himself to Bhajan, Sumiran and Dhyan [Inner Sound Meditation, Inner Light Meditation, and Repetition of the Holy Name/Simran/Manas Jap], and reading of holy books, service of the Guru and Satsang. He should place implicit faith in His mercy. In this way, all those, who act up to it, will be able to carry on smoothly. If one leaves the result of everything, one does, to Mauj [divine will], there will be no attachment. While doing anything, he will be free from the effects of such actions. If by internal devotional practices he has adopted such a Saran, then by the grace of His mercy all the past and Sanchit Karmas will be gradually eradicated, and whatever actions are done with reliance on Mauj, no Kriyaman Karmas will result from such actions, and the force of Prarabdha Karmas will also be appreciably lessened. In this way, a smooth life and salvation will be within easy reach, and a devotee, during his own life, will be able to see all the three classes of Karmas being rooted out. If the attainment of the Holy Feet of Radhasoami Dayal is his goal, with a firm determination not to halt at any intermediate stage and not to rest till he has attained that goal, and if he continues his devotional practices, always increasing his love and faith in the Holy Feet of Radhasoami Dayal and detaching his mind from this world, except to the extent, it is necessary to do so, then it is possible for him to reach the highest spiritual region, the abode of the true Supreme Being in one life or in two, or in case of any deficiency, in three lives. But the next birth will be better than the present one, in as much as, the spiritual attainment will be greater, so also the worldly comforts; he will surely meet Sat Guru and by attending His Satsang, even in a day or two, he will regain the progress made by him during the course of his previous life.
"Love for and faith in the Supreme Being Radhasoami Dayal [Compassionate, Merciful Lord of the Soul] and Sant Sat Guru will gradually go on increasing in the company of sincere and devoted Abhyasis (meditation practitioners, devotees, bhaktas). Bliss and joy will also be experienced in the performance of Abhyas [meditation]. If love and yearning are intense, the Sant Sat Guru will, by His Will, grant His Darshan [Vision] and grace. He will advance the practitioner in his Abhyas by helping him internally as well as externally."
-- Huzur Maharaj from the spiritual discourses known as Prem Patra Radhaswami, Volume Four
The Spiritual Journey and Meditation Practice According to Sant Ravidas
Below is from the book, "The Life and Works of Raidas (Ravidas)", by Winand M. Callewaert, Manohar Publications, New Delhi.
Regarding the Holy Name or Names, one may wonder what they are, how they are obtained, when and how they are repeated, and with what result.
The Holy Names are the sacred utterable words, imparted by the Satguru. These Names are so surcharged with power by the Satguru that through the practice of repeating these spoken Holy Names one can come in contact with the true Naam (the Unutterable Word, Logos, or the Unstruck Divine Music).
This repetition of the Holy Names must be carried on at all times. Apart from one's normal sitting hours (for meditation), even when one is walking or doing odd jobs with one's hands and feet, one must continue the repetition by the inner tongue, namely, the mind. With some maturity in this practice of repetition, it becomes so much ingrained in the practitioner that it automatically goes on all the time.
The repetition is to be carried on internally by the mind with one-pointed attention. It is the most potent means to cleanse the mind of its impurities, and with the mind being cleansed, the lustrous Internal Light and the Unstruck Divine Music appear, which ultimately lead the aspirant to God, the Almighty, the Light of all lights and the Source of all bliss.
Mystic-Verses of Sant Ravidas from the Adi Granth and the Vanis of Ravidas
Jap Raam Naam kahi gavaiga
After repetition, when thou shalt sing the Lord's Name,
Then thou shalt enter from duality into non-duality.
The Bliss that lies in contacting this Nectar,
In what words shalt thou sing its praise?
Only by the grace of the Guru
is this inner experience attained.
Simran, Remembering God's Name
He who remembereth God's Name,
Having sought the company of a Saint;
His miseries are averted,
Thus doth Ravidas proclaim.
My (inner) tongue is constantly preoccupied with repeating God's
And my hands are constantly engaged in doing my work.
Thus have I become carefree,
God will take care of me, sayeth Ravidas.
The threefold miseries of the world
Fleeth away from him
Who carries on repetition of the True Name,
Fixing his attention within, 0 Ravidas.
Steeped in meditation with one-pointed attention,
Practice devotion to God, 0 Ravidas.
Let the automatic repetition be continued within,
Reverberating the True Naam.
When the soul (surat)
mergeth into the Sound (Shabd)
and becometh one with it,
Then one obtaineth the supreme Bliss.
The lamp burneth inside, 0 Ravidas,
And Divine Bliss ariseth within.
Have mercy on me, 0 Lord.
With every breath I repeat Thy Name,
My mind will be delighted only on meeting Thee.
Thou art merciful, gracious
and the Ocean of Compassion,
Thou art the Lord and the companion of the poor.
Grant me Thy shelter night and day,
Let me not wander about anywhere else,
0 my Lord.
Only by Thy grace can vanity and pride be removed,
And the Nectar of the alchemy of God's Name
Such an intellect I beg of Thee, 0 Merciful One,
That it may not go anywhere else leaving Thy Holy Feet.
Ravidas hath taken refuge in Thy Holy Feet,
Take him to Thy heart considering him Thine own.
Seeing the Beloved,
Brightness prevaileth within the temple
of my mind.
From a humble hut, I have now acquired the ninefold treasures,
Lord, the Creator, hath showered His grace.
I have obtained my Beloved,
separated for myriads of births,
The entanglement of life after life is over.
"Renouncing all thoughts of the past and future, keep your spirit immersed in Shabd at the time of Bhajan [listening to the inner Sound Current during meditation]." (Swami Ji Maharaj)
Do Bhajan and Simran Every Day.....
"There is nothing more important than meditation. Increase this practice from day to day; never decrease it." (Baba Jaimal Singh)
"Bhajan and Simran is our real work. This will always accompany you because it is the gift of the Sat Guru. It may grow more, but it will never diminish.
"Please carry on your Bhajan and Simran every day and read from the Sar Bachan [of Soami Ji Maharaj] every day.
"The real greatness is in Shabd Dhun and Naam.
"Therefore, fix your 'surat' and 'nirat' and 'nij man,' with devotion, in the Shabd Dhun. If you listen for ten minutes, or five minutes, or four minutes, or two minutes, or even one minute, with love and devotion, millions of sins and obstacles will be removed. And after being purified, and testing and distinguishing the notes of the Dhun, you will merge into it and enjoy the Bliss. You will know which note to by-pass and which one to merge into.
"In this very life you will reach Sach Khand, but you should not hasten, please. Whenever you are free from ... duty, you should not waste your time even a little, nor fritter away the attention of your 'chit' [mind stuff, memory], for this time will not come to you again, even for a minute and we have to carve a place for ourselves in the Shabd Dhun while we are still in this body." (Baba Jaimal Singh)
"Listen to the Sound Current every day when you are free, and do Simran even while walking. Then all your worldly work will by done by the Master Himself. Do not worry in any way. The Lord Himself has given you this Way to meet Him, so you should consider this your great good fortune and you should always hold onto the Sound Current. One day it will surely take you to Sach Khand." (Baba Jaimal Singh)
Thrice-Daily Meditation -- Three Times A Day
"The practitioner, if he sits for meditation, always must keep his/her head, neck and spinal cord (back) completely straight. The respiration process will naturally become slowed if one sits straight, and thus it is a helping factor in meditation and Jap [simran].
"Sants/yogis have fixed times of meditation. Those times are: 1) in the pre-dawn, i.e. three hours before sun rise, 2) after taking a bath during the day [mid day], and 3) during the evening (after the sun sets). Meditation done in these three time is called Trayakaal Sandhyaa (thrice-daily meditation). A practitioner must sit for meditation in these three times, and also should do Maanas Jap (repeating the Guru-instructed mantra), or Maanas Dhyaan (involving mind in visualizing Guru's form inside), while doing worldly work.
"In the evening just before going to bed, the practitioner should sit in meditation for two to four minutes and then go to sleep. A practitioner can continue Maanas Jap or Maanas Dhyaan or keep his/her vision straight inside with closed eyes laying in bed.
"This practice protects one from terrible, unpleasant dreams, and on the other hand the practitioner can be benefited with the appearance of sages/sants or Satsang in the dream state. The appearance (seeing) of sants/sages in the dream state is an indication of spiritual-upwardness (progress)." (Swami Bhagirath Baba on Spiritual Practice)
What is the Name of God? The Many Mantras or Sacred Names of the One Nameless (Anami), Soundless (Anadi) God -- Simran Practice in the Sant Tradition of India, By James Bean
The Nameless God has been given many names over the countless centuries. There are countless divine names used in various schools of spirituality. Some are given "The Five Names" (Panch Naam) consisting of five holy names of God. These are revealed at the time of Initiation into Sant Mat or Shabd Yoga meditation. These same five names have been used for centuries in certain branches of Sant Mat connected with Sant Dariya Sahib and Sant Tulsi Sahib. Others have been given another set of Five Names, a different version of Panch Naam, and these names have been used for centuries in certain branches connected with Kabir and Sant Dharam Das. Still others have been given five Sufi, Persian or Arabic names of God at the time of Initiation into Surat Shabd Yoga meditation. These five Sufi or Islamic names have the same essential meaning as the five Indian names used in Sant Mat, and, as with the Indian names, also correspond to five basic inner regions.
(In one of the Jewish Gnostic paths of antiquity, a group known as the Sethians, there was also a five-named or Panch Naam type mantra approach, only with five Hebrew names. Those were associated with certain heavenly regions: Harmoz-el, Oroia-el, Daveithai, El-eleth, and another word meaning, the "Self-Begotten One".)
Others are given the name RADHASOAMI (Ra-da-Swam-i, "Soul-Lord" or "Lord of the Soul") to use in simran practice along one's journey though all of the various states and stages within. Other Sant Mat lineages use a two-syllabled sacred word revealed at the time of Initiation, and it represents another name for the Soundless One, the Most High God.
In the classic bhajans and banis of the Sants of India appear numerous names of God. One can read verses exhorting devotees to repeat many names of the Formless One:
"Repeat the Name of Raam".
"Repeat the Name of Radhaswami".
"Repeat the Name of Hari".
"Repeat the Name of Govinda".
"Repeat the Name of Vitthala".
"Repeat the Name of Allah".
"Repeat the Name of HOO (HU)".
Many names have used by various Sants: Param-Atma, Hari, Alakh, Allah, Raam or Rama, Rahim, Agam, Purushotama, Khuda, Gobind, Panduranga, Pandhari, Vitthala, Narayana, Vitthoba, Sat Purusha, etc... Some of these names are used by various Hindu paths also, and have different meanings. As Sant Dariya Sahib once said:
"Consider the four meanings of Ram,
The first Ram (1) is our inner self.
Parashu-Ram (2) is said to be the second one.
The third one lived in Dasharath's (3) home.
The fourth Ram is the Primeval Sat Purush (4)
Call Him (Sat Purush) Ram or call Him Naam,
Ram and Naam are one.
Both are mutually indistinguishable;
Satguru's Sound Current reveals this wisdom."
1) The Life Principle that pervades everywhere, permeating, within all.
2) Parashu-Ram, the son of Sage Jamadagni, is regarded as the sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu.
3) Ancient king of Ayodhya, the father of Ram. Rama: the seventh incarnation of Vishnu and the hero of the great epic Ramayana (Adventures of Rama).
4) The Nirguna or Formless Raam, All-Spirit. ("Dariya Sahib, Saint of Bihar", K.N. Upadhyaya, Mystics of the East Series)
For the Sants of the East, all names of the One God represent the Nameless, Formless (Nirguna) God of Love and Compassion Who is Timeless (Akal), Spirit, and Eternal (Sat).
The True Spirit of Simran Practice is Bhakti
"Simran" is a term which means "Remembrance", the spiritual practice of remembering or being mindful of God by repeating his Name. Devotees sing or chant various names for God. Higher spiritually, and more "within" is the practice of "manas jap", the mental repetition of God's name or names "with the tongue of thought" - in other words, chanting names of God within one's mind. The Sants have always placed much greater emphasis upon mental Simran over vocal chant.
There is however, more to Simran than the repeating of sacred names. Simran must be approached with the right attitude, the right spirit, for one's intent determines how successful the practice will be, and what effect it will have upon one's consciousness. Simran has never been intended to be a dry or lifeless mantra practice. The path of the Sants is a bhakti path, a path of love and devotion for the Supreme Being. Thus, the true Masters have always instructed their students to repeat God's Name with love and devotion, as a lover calling out to one's Beloved, the Lord of Love.
Keep your mind ever engrossed in the Name of the Lord
As the lover's mind is ever engrossed in his beloved.
He never forgets her for a single moment -
Through day and night he remembers her.
Happiness rests in ever-repeated simran,
Sorrow and suffering is removed by simran.
Kabir declares with utmost force and clarity:
Practise this simran and be one with the Lord.
What, then, is the practice of the Name? It is a form of interior prayer by which a person learns to keep his or her attention always in the Lord, in every circumstance and situation, at all moments, through day and night. It is a form of inner remembrance that leads to a heightened awareness beyond the limitations of the physical world and the portals of death.
Through meditation on the Name, or Nam bhakti, one learns to draw one's attention away from the outer world.
Always be in rapport with the Lord
And enjoy true contentment -
This is the state of ineffable serenity.
There is no peace except in the Name of the Lord -
Meditate on it with one-pointed attention.
Experience the state of super-consciousness
Where the Lord's love surges
And you will see your own form
In each particle of the creation.
0 Nama, the Lord will make
The pupil of your eye his home,
And your eye will expand
To contain the entire universe.
The Simran of God's Name Will Lead One to the True Name: The Sound of God
The repetition of the holy Names is a wonderful spiritual technique. An uninterrupted inner repetition of the holy Names given by the living Master has to be practiced daily with love, devotion, and one-pointed attention. One thereby transcends one's body and is transported to the realms of Light.
The repetition develops into an ever-going spontaneous process, and one catches the unceasing inner Music which takes one to its Source, and reveals God face to face. One is, therefore, exhorted to search daily for the Source of this Unstruck Music. Whatever one does and wherever one happens to be, one is asked to be a sacrifice unto His Name and to have ardent longing to behold Him and hear His voice.
Mantras/sacred names vary from place to place, in different groups and change over time. The names (simran words, manas jap) given to initiates by a living Master are kept secret along with the meditation techniques.
There are two levels of the name of God: an alphabetical name that can be written, spoken or chanted (either verbally or mentally: jap and manas jap), and there is the True Name of God. The True Name can't be written down or spoken, for it is Celestial Sound Current, the Audible Life Stream. Some mantras mimic it to some extent, such as OOOOMMM, HUUUU, and the Gnostic vowel chant: AAAAUUUUUIIIIEEEEEEOOOO, but the real name "above every other name" is Sound, as in the Music of the Spheres, Song of Creation, Nada, Logos, Tao, AUM, Saut-i-Sarmad, Anhad Shabd or Shabd Naam. "Who else is Christ but the Sound of God." (Acts of John, Gnostic text)
Sant Dadu Dayal
From within, the indwelling Lord Himself
"The repetition of My Name alone
is true; all else is delusion."
The Name, the essential Truth of the
three worlds, alone is efficacious.
With discrimination, repeat it exclusively
day and night, 0 mind.
At every breath be devoted to it, and