Friday, August 17, 2012

LOAY 800-Hour, Day 5

The Life of a Yogi

In the atoms between you and me in the air all around, in the smog, in the sky, in the concrete, in our clothing, in the in-between, there is an ever-resounding ~om, always vibrating at different speeds, but never-ending…

In each atom, you can find entire universes stacked on top of one another, in which there are contained planets and stars made up of atoms, and in those atoms there are universes upon universes, and so on. High above, the same forces that move the planets around our sun are the same as the ones that move the forces at the cellular level – the same ones that move forces deep within a homeless man’s body who is lying asleep on the sidewalk. Where I used to live alone in the woods of the Ozarks, I would find great comfort in crystalline, sparkling pink winter sunrises. How could I never see both the profane as well as the treasured moments as part of the same Almighty One? Because, in fact, they are…

The beauty around us is missed because of the mind and all its cloudiness, all the ego and distractions. You begin to experience more and more spiritual bliss all the time when you stay faithful to your practice. When you leave class and start chattering after Dharma says to remain silent, you miss it. Just physically being here is not enough. You have to take it with you, and be immersed in love wherever you go. When it gets difficult, you keep reminding yourself mentally, “This is maya, it’s just an illusion… in the substratum everything is God.”

It’s hard, we are over the halfway point, and my physical body is exhausted. But my heart is soaring, and I silently weep when I see Dharma and realize that he is just a reflection of me, of her, of him, of you, wherever you are reading this. It gives me hope that all the dark places in my heart will be cleaned out through practice, and that one day when my own life fades, I can come to God without shame. I look into the deep black pools that are Sri Dharma’s eyes during his lectures and see a light shining from deep within and veeeerrrry quietly, I begin to see it everywhere, underneath the gross parts of existence. But not if you eat too much of the wrong food; not if you do your Karma Yoga at night with a heavy heart; not if you talk too much when Guru specifically instructed not to; and not if you think, “I am better/higher than this person, than that person, etc.” The best thing to do is: nothing.

Teaching Psychic Development is a heavy responsibility – having the knowledge and techniques gives one a tremendous amount of power. If you use it for the wrong reasons, it can be very dangerous. It is like a very sharp knife… You can use it with skill and have a very effective tool, or you can cut yourself very badly and do a lot of damage. I taught my first Psychic Development group class this morning, and each time I do it, I tune in deeper and deeper. I am sure that this is still only skimming the surface of its immensity. This is probably never going to be a class I will offer to the public, because I want to ensure that only the most trustworthy of people receive it from my lips. I am not the Guru, with his supreme understanding of all of this. 

~Olivia Foss


3 days left and blissed and blessed…

There was some serious Shakti stimulated tonight! Our group just participated in a Kirtan led by Adam and Melissa on harmonium and Yoshio on percussion. The trio’s energy, talent, and beautiful voices were appreciated and enjoyed by all of us. Looking around the room, our group was smiling, joining along with instruments, and singing with high energy… even after the fifth consecutive long day.

After reading Olivia’s blog entry yesterday, I realize that I too sometimes forget that life does exist outside of this building, but a beautiful by-product of this immersion is the relationships and connections developed here. Most students who have completed either the 200- or 500-hour teacher training, whether it was in the former Dharma East or the West, become connected to the teachers, students, and even the physical space. As Mouna (spiritual silence) is honored, few words are even shared, but the connections are deep – perhaps because we all are like-minded people who have experienced the same training, and/or our karmas brought us through these doors in the first place.

The same feelings arise each time the immersion gets close to ending… the feeling of not wanting it to end. I know that feeling is one that our groups shares as well. Sri Dharma’s advice would be: practice Vairagya, non-attachment.

~Cindy Ley-Sepe

 The Kirtan with Adam, Melissa, and Yoshio (photo by Reegan Lessie)

Cindy’s Yoga Nidra bed

 Rockin the temple with Kirtan

 Small group teaching Psychic Development

 The trainees become “the Dharma-razzi”: snapping pictures of the mentors and the Guru

 Sri Dharma and Baxter (who got a haircut earlier in the week)

 Spiritual discourse with Sri Dharma

 Yoshio demonstrating Maha Veda

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