26014The power of mantra and selfless service
- Nov 14, 2013
Sometimes when handing out leaflets in Oxford town centre, I see members of other spiritual groups giving out information or fliers book about their path. I offer a friendly smile to these fellow spiritual travelers. I see it as an encouragement when others are similarly inspired to share spiritual wisdom. It might be a different path, but there is always a shared kinship with seekers of other Masters.
Recently, we were giving some meditation classes in Oxford. A sincere seeker told me an interesting experience. She once received a book from the Hare Krishna's who were handing them out in the street. Although she was happy to take the book, she never had the time to read it - apart from a mantra on the first page. "Hare Kirshna, Hare Rama" The book advised if you ever get into great difficulties, recite this mantra.
A few years passed and she had completely forgotten about the book; but, on some occasion her mind became overwhelmed with problems and anxieties. She felt in a deep depression, but out of nowhere, she remembered this particular mantra and the instruction to repeat when in difficulty. She tried repeating the mantra and it helped considerably in improving her mood. This left her with an interest in mantra and meditation, and when she saw a leaflet for our meditation classes she came along.
The interesting thing for me is how a small selfless action, quite a long time ago, can really become a big turning point in someone's life and have so many knock on effects. Sometimes, we may wonder whether it is worth spending a few hours on Saturday afternoon handing out leaflets or giving out aphorism cards. But, here is the proof, one mantra helped this lady quite significantly. In this case, the mantra came from another spiritual path, but it sent her on a course which led to coming to some meditation classes by the Sri Chinmoy Centre.
I'm sure it also works the other way around too - with people who come to our meditation classes, finding a little more spiritual contentment in life and perhaps finding a spiritual path further down the road.
At the end of the course, I invited this seeker to take several of Sri Chinmoy's aphorism cards - something to read in the morning or before meditation. She was eager to take.
Another inspiring / amusing story this seeker also shared. One morning, during her daily meditation practise, she was singing along to some songs of Sri Chinmoy - (performed by Ananda / several short songs like Aum Govinda Nama) She had a good meditation, but the funny thing was later her son came downstairs and almost sub-consciously was singing the same mantra she had been singing out loud in her room, 20 minutes earlier; her son had picked up something almost unconsciously. She thought it funny because her son wasn't into meditation at all!
It just goes to show, that anything we do can have so many knock on effects to those around us. Always we are influencing people either for the better or worse. I feel grateful to be able to share Sri Chinmoy's philosophy and approach to meditation because you can often see how it makes a real difference to those seekers who come along.
My absolutely favourite version of the Maha Mantra - 'Hare Krishna, Hare Rama' is a version recorded by Arthada & Friends. I once spent many hours trying to find other versions, but nothing came close. Of course I may be a little biased!
The songs by Ananda: