11892Re: Keeping a Spiritual Journal in 1887
- Dec 5 8:27 PM--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, medit8ionsociety
> Dear Jodyji,Hey Bob.
> This journal is only a drop in the ocean of methods that Swami
> Sivananda used in his teaching. He mainly used Kirtan chanting, Jhana,
> Raja, Bhakti, and Karma Yoga methodologies, and in his 350+ books, you
> can see a synthesis of pointings that come down to his (most
> "un-authoritarian" and "un-disciplinism" of all types of 'regimes')
> summary of his teachings...."Be good. Do good". But for some of his
> disciples, like Swami Vishnu-Devananda (founder of the internationally
> well known Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centers), it proved to be a valuable
> tool in their coming to Realization. BTW, I have read more than 80 of
> his books, and have never found anywhere anything pointing to "The
> idea that we must conform to some ridiculously authoritarian regime in
> order to come to understanding" that you stated. He was one of the
> kindest, and most humble gurus I have ever read about or heard stories
> about. He always put others before himself, and made a habit of caring
> for the poor and sick personally.
> I'll just cite one continuing activity of his that demonstrates the
> kind of person we are discussing - He would allow his followers to
> worship him, if that was what fit the needs of others, but would then
> go and wash sick saddhu's feet so as not to get big-headed about all
> the veneration. No Rolls Royces, and no just sitting on a mat beeming
> blissfully. Not that these things are "bad" either.
> Peace and blessings,
I'm sure sorry that you took that as a guru dis, if indeed you did.
I certainly didn't mean it that way. In fact, my tradition is much
the same as taught by *my* guru and his preceptors.
I wasn't commenting on the author of the journal, I was attempting
to point out that the content of the journal was way, way outdated,
and that the acceptance of this kind of outdated material is cause
for as much ignorance as it is understanding. That's just my opinion
of course, but I'd have to say that the times, they are a changin',
and have been changing, a lot.
Your guru may have said these things in the 60s or 70s, but he
was reiterating the content of the 1800s. Also, he was Indian,
born and raised in India. His understanding was unlimited, but
his world map was firmly anchored in a whole different milieu.
I mean not a shred of disrespect, but I'm trying to put it in
historical perspective. That seems to be missed so often
in the arena of Indian thought as it resides in the West.
Swami Sivananda is unassailable, I agree. But as a historical
figure from an anthropological perspective, he was a man of
his times and his culture. His being in complete spiritual
understanding does not preclude the fact that some of what
he wrote just doesn't fit with the times anymore, and even
when he wrote it, it was out of a completely different cultural
milieu than the one he was presenting it in.
Again Bobji, I certainly don't mean to question Sivananda's
understanding or your judgement in regarding him as you do.
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