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Maximizing our Time in Sadhana

Date: Sat, 19 Jun 2010 19:57:48 -0000 To: From: NJK Majumdar Subject: Maximizing our Time in Sadhana Baba "Ma'nus' yeno ma'nus'er tare sab kichu kare ya'y..." (P.S. 2192) Purport: Great persons-- proper human beings-- do everything in their life for the upliftment of other human beings. In their mind they also never forget that animals, birds, and plants also belong in their vast family. For such sadhakas, no one is alien because in their heart they understand that each and every being wants to survive. They are true neo-humanists. Why do human beings cry, feeling isolated in their own suffering after losing their path in the Cimmerian darkness. Our love and care will bring everyone close to us; nobody will be left behind-- crying and suffering in frustration. On this auspicious crimson occasion we will save everyone and provide them shelter from the burning flame of illiteracy, starvation, and all kinds of troubles. By taking Cosmic ideation elevated human beings have come on this earth to serve everyone: The entire humanity plus the birds, animals, plants, flora and fauna, & animate and inanimate objects-- the entire creation...
Namaskar, As sadhakas there are innumerable life circumstances that we find ourselves in. There are a variety of mundane works and worldly duties that we must attend to: Work, travel, meetings, family time, meals, etc. With it all, Baba's eternal guideline is that we are to spend a maximum amount of time in spiritual pursuits: Sadhana etc. Baba says, "If you have even only one minute's time, do kiirtan for one minute...your sa'dhana' will attain the height of spiritual fulfilment." (17 May '82) So by this we can understand that Baba's main emphasis is that despite our worldly schedules a maximum amount of time should be allocated for our spiritual practices. Basically we should do them whenever and wherever possible. This is His mandate. And that propels us up to the height of human glory. Here following are some suggestions given by various sadhakas about how to increase our time in meditation despite our busy and often unpredictable routine. Please kindly offer or add your own insights and recommendations also: That will be beneficial for all.
Apart from our specially designated twice daily sadhana regimen, often we get moments of free time throughout the day that can be well utilised for spiritual endeavours. For example sometimes we might attend a conference or meeting and before the speaker begins, we may have a free minute or two. And other times we may be sitting in a car waiting for a friend or associate. Like this invariably we get little pockets of time that can be transformed in spiritual moments.
Yet not all these times are necessarily conducive for singing kiirtan or Prabhat Samgiita-- such as when we are in certain public venues or in areas where we must be quiet etc. So engaging in devotional singing is not always an option for us. And other times we've recently finished a meal or light fare etc-- which may lead one to think that sadhana is not an option. Since we are all aware that doing sadhana on an empty stomach is best-- optimal. Nonetheless, when we find ourselves with free time after having recently completed a meal, even then there are a couple lessons that can be properly practiced, given the circumstances.
Despite having taken food third lesson (tattva dharana) and fifth lesson (cakra shodhana) can still be practiced. That does not mean one should therefore intentionally eat before doing sadhana and then do 3rd and 5th lessons and think that now one of our required sadhana sessions has been completed. That is not the spirit of the point at hand. Rather, in our busy schedule, when free time arises after a meal, then a very good option is to 3rd and 5th lesson to best utilise the time. By this way the mind will feel refreshed and one will get in a better mood. Because both third and fifth lesson will infuse some spiritual shakti within our being. Of course 1st and 6th lessons are the main mediation lessons of our AM sahaja yoga system. But after taking food, it is not at all easy to practice those lessons. Often will feel sleepy or groggy and will be unable to concentrate properly. In that case the best option is to do 3rd or 5th lesson. Because even with food in the stomach, one can do both 3rd and 5th lessons to a reasonable degree. So despite the adverse circumstances, this is one way to maximize one's day for sadhana. Of course if one is not encumbered by having recently taken food, then naturally one can select any meditation lesson they like.
As noted above, first lesson (Ishvara Pranidhana) & sixth lesson (dhya'na) are our main lessons of sadhana. Since both bring us up to the Goal. By first lesson one reaches up to savikalpa samadhi-- liberation or mukti. And with sixth lesson we can reach up to that apex point: nirvikalpa samadhi-- salvation or moksa. For that reason when the mind is pointed and vibrated then maximum time should be allotted for this lessons-- especially dhya'na. As building blocks, however, there are so many practices that we engage in to prepare the mind for meditation. Such as chanting kiirtan, singing Prabhat Samgiita, or engaging in devotional talk etc. Plus within our sahaja yoga system there are multiple lessons which are actually helping lessons of sadhana, or limbs of sadhana. And these are known as: sa'dhana'unga. Both third and fifth lesson fall in this category of sa'dhana'unga, as does pranayama. The reason being that these lessons support our practice of first and sixth lesson. Indeed these helping lessons are an indispensable part of doing higher meditation.
So here the main point is that third and fifth lesson help charge the mind and spiritualise one's existence. So due to life circumstances-- such as having recently taken food etc, when one is unable to do one of our more advanced lessons like Ishvara Pranidhan and Dhya'na, then doing 3rd or 5th lesson is excellent use of the time. And of course when we get more time or when the body is better prepared for meditation, then we can do other lessons. And of course, even if we do 3rd and 5th lesson multiple times throughout the day, that is not a substitute for sitting down twice daily with a tranquil mind and empty stomach and performing all our sadhana lessons. The overall focus here is how to best spiritualize our life and fill it with a maximal amount of time in sadhana practices despite our haphazard schedules and busy lives. Because, as Baba tells us again and again, spiritual sadhana is the main endeavour & crowning glory of this human life.
Baba says, "The wise practise Dharma Sa'dhana' right from infancy because a human life is rare and rarer still is the human life perfected through sa'dhana'." (SS-1, 'Bhaktitattva') Baba says, "Human life is for sa'dhana'." (CC-2, 'Sadhana" chapter, point #4) Baba says, "Those who realise Him in the form of onm'ka'ra', advance along the path of onm'ka'ra' and finally become ensconced in Purus'ottama, the source of onm'kara, the nucleus of all emanations. The unit entities in which His divine expression are fully manifest are said to have attained the height of fulfillment physically, psychically and spiritually. They realise in the core of their hearts that the entire human life is a 'sa'dhana'." (AMIWL-6) Baba says, "Life is a spiritual sa'dhana' and the result of this sa'dhana' is to be offered at the altar of the Supreme." (A'nanda Va'nii, #12) Namaskar, Nagendra NB 1. All sadhakas are most humbly requested to write in with their own realisations and practices for increasing our time in sadhana-- thus making this human life successful. NB 2. Here is another letter that details how to utlilise short spans of time throughout the day for spiritual practice.

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