Echo From The Cave: 107

Sunday March 17, 2019 NYC

Krishna revealing his cosmic form to Arjuna

Editor’s Note: Pranavadipa Volume 52

In the famous scripture, Bhagavad Gita, the Lord Krishna said that, verily, it is by action alone that men attain perfection.

This month’s issue of Pranavadipa (Vol. 52) features the first of two precious Satsangha that took place in New York, in January 2019 during Shri Mahayogi’s visit to New York.

We were so grateful to have this opportunity to be in the presence of Master, to be able to ask questions and then receive answers. Every moment with the Master is filled with grace and everything about his being stills the waves of our mind, opens our hearts and allows the Truth that is within us, that is within one and all, to resonate more and more strongly.

The Sastsangha began by the question, “How does one create tapas?” Such a question, with its straightforwardness and directness immediately sets the tone of the Satsangha to one of practical action. As the questions unfold, the reader can sense the sincere desire among attendees to further their practice and to overcome the various challenges they have had in deepening in Yoga.

From beginning to end, Shri Mahayogi patiently offers words of encouragement and reassurance to the attendees that practice is possible, speaking about the concrete practice that needs to be applied in order to overcome obstacles and make progress towards realizing the Self. Shri Mahayogi graciously explains again the basic teachings like yama and niyama and emphasizes the importance of not judging one’s own practice regardless of success or failure, but simply practice with perseverance. He then goes on to elaborate on the meditation that comes from acting in service of others as well as the importance of cultivating fortitude within oneself.

Many topics are covered during this Satsangha, but even so, there seems to be a thread that is weaving everything together. And that thread is ACTION. No matter the practice, no matter the obstacle, no matter the teaching, Shri Mahayogi continues to encourage taking action as the key to it all.

And indeed, reading scriptures and hearing the teaching of Truth is a great blessing, but without actually training our minds and bodies by putting the teachings into practice, we can neither experience the transformation nor the depth of understanding that can only come through the experience of actual practice. Yoga is learned through experience alone. Experience comes through taking action based on the teaching.

Let us all persevere and continue to act, moment to moment, on the teaching so that the content beyond the words that Shri Mahayogi is offering us in this Satsangha will be revealed!

*

This month’s Testimony, written by Sadhya, is the experience of one of the asana taught by Shri Mahayogi, simhasana (the lion pose), and what is being revealed through its practice. Just like with the words offered by Shri Mahayogi, the content of the asana that he teaches may be well beyond what we might at first think, or can even imagine when we first begin. But through steady and continuous practice, driven by the fervor to learn the Truth, we can all begin to experience the depth that is contained within.

There is much we can learn from this article: Sadhya’s proactive attitude to learn is remarkable—she continuously devotes to trying to understand the meaning behind what we can see. And this is what leads to that meaning being revealed—the blessings and grace of Shri Mahayogi come with her practice.

 

Echo From The Cave: 106

Friday March 8, 2019 NYC

Shri Mahayogi’s Words of Truth Resound in NY:
March 3rd Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi
&
Gratitude for Shri Mahayogi’s Visit to New York

 

Pranam to the Great Master, the Great Paramahansa!

The immeasurable grace of your presence has brought the light of Truth concretely into our hearts and into our lives for the past one and a half months while visiting New York. The swift return of Shri Mahayogi has served to strengthen the golden thread that is ever-connecting our heart to yours and this strength has allowed us to carry on with our seeking and practicing to become one with the Truth. In your presence, all else pales in comparison. In your presence, our worldly afflictions mysteriously dissipate. In your presence, we are lifted out of darkness, as if you are lifting an incredible weight off of our shoulders. In your presence, your grace is all pervading and undeniable. We cannot find words enough to express our gratitude.

During this visit, that strengthened presence of Shri Mahayogi in New York has seemingly settled into not only our own hearts, but also the hearts of several of the attendees who have faithfully come to Shri Mahayogi’s programs, strongly pulling them towards the path of Truth. One such attendee is Dheeraj, who offered flowers to Shri Mahayogi on behalf of the NY sangha during the last program of the visit. To witness the kindling of sincerity and devotion to the Guru within those who come to see Shri Mahayogi is indeed one of the most beautiful and precious things to witness on this path. It is the workings of Shri Mahayogi’s purity and grace concretized right before our eyes.

Here we would like to share the speeches of gratitude offered by three members of the sangha at the end of the Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi.

And of course, we would like to share the words of Shri Mahayogi, the simple yet invaluable message he left for us all.

 

*

Dheeraj, who for this special occasion had changed into a traditional orange-colored kurta, approaches the Master with a bright and cheerful bouquet of flowers to offer from the NY sangha, and begins to express his gratitude.

Dheeraj:

Dearest Guruji, Shri Mahayogi, on behalf of the NY sangha, I would like to offer you these flowers as a token of our appreciation and gratitude. (offers flowers)

It is truly a blessing to be in your presence. You have removed many obstacles in my life. I couldn’t have done it without you.

Guruji, I realize the value of a true Master, a true Guru, for everyone seeking the Truth. You are the hope and light that dispels the darkness of ignorance and ego.

Thank you Guruji.

Once again on behalf of everyone in the New York sangha, we would like to have you back in New York (joyful laughter from all).

Thank you Guruji.

Aniruddha:

Shri Mahayogi, the NY sangha would like to thank you very much and share our gratitude for hosting you this visit. Even though the length was only a month and a half, its shortness reminds us of how precious it is to take advantage of every opportunity.

You’ve shown us that there is a lot of work to be done in NY. Many new seekers have come before you to learn, and we as individuals, especially me, do know that there is much more that we can do, and we shouldn’t be afraid or ashamed to speak your Truth to others. And until you return we hope and want to grow ourselves as individuals, to keep our faith, and to strengthen sangha. And we hope to have you back soon with us.


Sadhya:
Shri Mahayogi, again, on behalf of the NY sangha we would like to extend our sincere gratitude for coming so soon after being here just this summer. Your quick return, your presence among us and your grace have brought gurubhai, helped bring us together, and helped keep the connection between the gurubai. Thank you.

And to everyone here: Yoga is almost unknown, and Shri Mahayogi is almost unknown too, so it is a great blessing that all of us have found Shri Mahayogi. So please, everyone continue, and discover for yourself who Shri Mahayogi really is, by persevering and actually practicing by putting his teaching into action. I have no doubt that as we practice, our understanding will deepen, and that what we receive from Shri Mahayogi will only become greater and greater and greater. So, let’s please all experience this together.

And to gurubai: we have much work to do in NY. And we cannot rely on Shri Mahayogi visiting to help bring us together. So, we need action, moment to moment action, to practice and grow for real. I hear that this weekend, next Saturday, there are over 70 people waiting to take the class with Shri Mahayogi in Japan, traveling from all over. We, as disciples, have the responsibility to prove that Yoga can be attained, to prove Shri Mahayogi’s teaching and his existence. We need to become the body of Shri Mahayogi everywhere, living and breathing his teaching, so that others can also find Shri Mahayogi and find the Truth. So, I encourage the gurubai to feel the responsibility of this more and more.

And again, Shri Mahayogi, thank you very much for coming, and we just cannot wait until this summer when you return. Please come with the warm weather.


Then Shri Mahayogi spoke:

“I would very much love to return to New York right away, but in April there is an event we hold in Kyoto called Sanatana Dharma Avatara Mela (The Grand Ceremony of the Manifestations of Divinity). That will be held on April 8th, the date that is said to be the day that Buddha was born. It is very good weather in Japan, it is the spring season and it is when the cherries are in full blossom. And then, after that I will visit Taipei for a little while. The one who is leading the group in Taiwan, is Prasadini, who actually used to come to take this class here [in New York, though she is originally from Taiwan]. I heard that the group there is already growing into about 50 students. And then I have another appointment in May as well. (smiling) So please forgive me, but my visit to New York will have to be after that.

 But [I would like you to remember that] the Truth within me is also the Truth within you all. More precisely, I am You. Remember that always, continue your practice and don’t neglect to study the scriptures.

 And let us look forward to meeting each other again. All right, then.”

 

 

Our greatest Master, Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa, You are our father, You are our mother, You are our best friend, You are the Hope, You are the Light, You are the embodiment of Truth, You are our Dearest Beloved, You are my Beloved, Your are Love.

Oh my Love, You are everything…


Jai Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa Ki, Jai!!!

 

*


    

Jai Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa Ki, Jai!!!

 

ディラージからのスピーチ (日本語訳)
最も親愛なるグルジ、シュリー・マハーヨーギー、ニューヨーク・サンガを代表して、貴方への 感謝の証としてこの花束を捧げさせて頂きたく思います。

こうして貴方の存在の下にいられることは、本当に祝福です。貴方は沢山の障害物を私の人生から取り除いてくださいました。貴方なしではそれをすることは私にはできませんでした。

道を求める誰もにとって、真の師、本当のグルがいかに重要であるのかということを知りました。貴方は、無知とエゴの闇 を払いのける希望であり、光です。

ありがとうございます、グルジ。

もう一度、ニューヨークの弟子の代表として、ニューヨークにどうかお戻りくださいますようお願い申し上げます。

ありがとうございます、グルジ。

アニルッダのスピーチ (日本語訳)
ニューヨーク・サンガを代表してこの度のご訪問への感謝の気持ちを述べたいと思います。期間はたった一カ月半でしたが、短いからこそすべての機会が本当に貴重なものであり、最大限にそこから学ばなければいけないということを身を以て感じております。貴方はニューヨークのサンガには沢山のやらなければならない課題があるということを見せてくださいました。多くの新しい求道者たちが貴方から学ぶために来ました。そして我々個々人は、特に私自身は、自分たちにできることはもっとあるということ、そして人に真実を伝えることを恐れるべきでも恥ずかしく思うべきでもないということを確信しています。貴方がお戻りになられるまでに、我々一人一人が成長し、信仰をもち続け、サンガが強くなることを願い、求めます。そして我々は貴方がすぐまた我々の元にお戻りになってくださることを願います。

サーディヤーのスピーチ (日本語訳)
シュリー・マハーヨーギー、私からもニューヨーク・サンガを代表して、この夏にお越しいただいてからこんなにも早く訪問してくださったことへの心からの感謝を表明させていただきたく思います。すぐに戻ってくださったこと、私たちと共にいてくださったこと、貴方の恩寵は、グルバイを増やし、グルバイをまとめ、またグルバイ同士の絆が維持されるのを助けてくださいました。ありがとうございます。

ここにいる皆さん、ヨーガは殆んど知られていません。シュリー・マハーヨーギーも殆ど知られていません。だから、こうして私たちがシュリー・マハーヨーギーを見つけたということは、本当に大きな祝福なのです。どうか皆さん続けてください、そしてシュリー・マハーヨーギーが本当にどなたであるかということを、皆さんが自分で見つけて、発見してください、忍耐強くシュリー・マハーヨーギーの教えを、行動を通して実践することによって。修行を続けていけば、私たちの理解が深まっていくということを、そして、私たちがシュリー・マハーヨーギーから頂くものは、より大きくなるばかりであるということを私は全く疑いません。だから、みんなでそれを一緒に体験しようではありませんか。

グルバイの皆さん、私たちはニューヨークでやるべきことが沢山あります。私たちが団結して一丸となることをシュリー・マハーヨーギーのご訪問に頼っているわけにはいきません。行動が、一瞬一瞬 の行動が、真の修行と成長が必要です。

今週末の土曜日、日本でのシュリー・マハーヨーギーのクラスを受けるために日本中から集まる七十人以上もの方たちが、その日を待ち望んでいると聞いています。私たち弟子たちは、ヨーガが達成可能であるということを証明し、シュリー・マハーヨーギーの教えとご存在を証明する義務があります。私たちは、どこにいてもシュリー・マハーヨーギーの体となって、彼の教えを生き、そして生きたものにする必要があります。教えを広げていく、そして教えを生きていくべきです、そうすれば、他の人たちもシュリー・マハーヨーギーを見つけ、また真理を見つけることができるからです。グルバイたちは、もっともっとこのことに責任を感じていってください。

再度申し上げます。シュリー・マハーヨーギー、お越し頂きありがとうございます。この夏にお戻りになってくださる時がとても待ち遠しいです。暖かい気候 の時期にお越しくださいますように。


シュリー・マハーヨーギーのお言葉 (原文)

「すぐにでも帰ってきたい気持ちは山々ですが、四月には京都でサナータナ・ダルマ アヴァターラ メーラーというお祭りをします。ちょうど四月八日は、かのブッダが生まれたと言われた日です。そして日本の気候はちょうど春の桜がキレーイに満開になる頃です。そうしてその後、台北の方に少し行きます。台湾のグループをリードしているのは、かつてこのクラスに来ていたプラサーディニー。今ではもう五十人前後の生徒たちが集まっているそうです。そして、五月もちょっと予定が一つ決まっている。(笑)ごめんなさい、ニューヨークに来るのはその後になります。

でも、私の真実はあなた自身の真実でもあります。もっとはっきりと言えば、私はあなたです。いつもそれを忘れないで、プラクティスを、そして少しばかり聖典の勉強を怠らないでください。

そして次に会うことを楽しみにしましょう。それでは」

ジャイ・サッドグル・シュリー・マハーヨーギー・パラマハンサ・キ・ジャイ!!!

Echo From The Cave: 105

Saturday March 2, 2019 NYC

Shri Mahayogi’s Words of Truth Resound in NY:
February 24th Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi

In the western world, Yoga is often used to refer to the physical postures, called asana, which make up a small part of what is known as Raja Yoga, an eight-limbed scientific path to reaching the ultimate state of Self-Realization. Because there is so much emphasis in the West on “Yoga” being synonymous with “asana”, it may not be common knowledge anymore that the aim of the practice of Yoga actually is Self-Realization, rather than merely to achieve some physical benefits or relaxation.

At the same time, for those who are seeking Self-Realization and who have studied the paths taught by the Masters of the past, such as Shri Ramakrishna, Ramana Maharishi, and Paramahansa Yogananda, it may seem that asana was not taught or emphasized as part of that path at all.

Considering that, it may appear to be difficult to unite the teaching of asana (at least how it has come to be known and popularized today) and the path to Self-Realization. And we may even wonder whether one is part of the other or not. Yet, Shri Mahayogi is here now, a living Master, and he is teaching asana practice as one of the first steps along this same path to Self-Realization—to Yoga—that the Masters of the past have also taught since ancient times, or we should say that that was how the practice of asana began in the first place.

So, what is the difference? Why does it seem that asana has a role in this path?

During last Sunday’s Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi, a new attendee inquired exactly about this topic. Here we would like to share with you his question and Shri Mahayogi’s words in response.

 

Q: What exactly is the role of asana practice in Self-Realization?

The purpose of Yoga is to know and to realize the Truth. Then the question is: What is that Truth? It is the true Self, that is, God, which is also called Truth. Normally, the “I” that the mind believes itself to be is this body or the mind. But they are not, they are not the Self. The true Self is not the mind, It is the Pure Consciousness that witnesses the mind. The mind is always seen by that Consciousness. However, because it seems to be that the mind sees, as if it is identified with that Consciousness, the mind does not know the true Self. The various workings of that mind are the karma or the attachments towards this world; and the root cause of all of them is what is called ignorance. Therefore, what you must do is to purify the mind to be clean and transparent. If you do that, then the true Self will be awakened by itself. That is the entire path of Yoga. Yet, there are so many obstacles in the mind that are dormant. In order to eliminate and remove them, a year or 10 years of practice are not sufficient. In most cases this is the work of a lifetime. If you cannot complete it in this lifetime, then you should continue to exert effort to attain it in the next lifetime. Even so, while in search of the Truth it is better to go closer, even one step, or two steps closer towards the Truth, rather than clinging to the transient phenomena of this world, the things that are false.

Indeed, the mind has to be brought under control and restrained. However, catching the mind is difficult, just like trying to catch the wind. So, then what about water? If you use a container, then you will be able to catch the water. If it is an ice cube, it’s even easier. These are all made of H2O. The body corresponds to the ice cube. For that reason, by practicing asana, you first practice to attempt to control the body. In order to live in this natural world, the body always receives stimulation [from the outside] and becomes agitated, just as does the mind. So, the purpose of asana practice is to make the body healthy and strong, and into the body of a yogi, which remains unaffected no matter what conditions the body is under. And then if the body is well-conditioned, the path of prana that flows inside the body will be purified. That is to say in other words, to condition the breath. If the prana is getting controlled, then simultaneously, it will lead to the calming of the mind. Then the mind will come to be unaffected by various stimulants, and at the same time a very keen power of concentration arises. Using this, you concentrate on the Truth, and meditate on It. At the same time, you strive to purify the mind. Through practicing this way, the mind will actually come to be transformed completely. That means that it is becoming prepared for the real Self to emerge on its own, because It is what is undoubtedly the true Self within all of you.

I would like you to continue practicing these asana [that we practiced in the class today] for some more time, then study and learn the scriptures. By scriptures, I mean the ones that have gathered the words of Truth from Enlightened Beings, or Saints. So [since these are worthy of learning], I would like you to study hard and learn them well. Then practice meditation. Then that would be good. Here [in the class] we carry a very small book, and it will help you on your journey, at least to some degree.

 So, now I’ll end the class for today.”

Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa

 

***

In modern times, we want to get results instantly, we want to know what the manual says or what technique we should use right away. But clearly that is not how the practice of asana can be. Just like how the practice of Yoga was not revealed unless someone searched for it seriously, longing for it more than anything else in life, the secret of asana too was only revealed to those who were seriously seeking Yoga. Information is abundant nowadays. Yet, the key to know and experience or to realize the Self cannot be attained through doing some kind of “technique” only for a temporary time, or by applying a “technique” that we’ve read about or heard about from just anyone. The real secret is only revealed by putting our body and mind to work, to bring them under control and purify them under the direction of a true guide who has attained the goal. That is why we need a Guru, One who knows how to bring his or her students to that same state of attainment. That is why Yoga cannot be known through intellectual knowledge, but only through actual and persistent devoted action and practice under the guidance given by a Guru. For this reason, the company of sangha is also essential as a way to support one another in learning. In this sense, although Yoga seems to be known now far and wide, true Yoga still remains practically unknown. Yoga is by nature empirical—it is nothing theoretical or philosophical.

We have mentioned several times that the asana that Shri Mahayogi teaches, though the forms may look similar to what is being taught in a multitude of schools, has a content and purpose that is entirely different. As we practice this asana, without a doubt we will discover this for ourselves and come to understand little by little why asana has a role in this path, and why it is a necessary step in the present time for many who wish to walk towards Self-Realization.

We invite you to practice and begin this discovery for yourself.

Tomorrow we will hold the final Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi for this visit to New York. Please do not miss this last opportunity to learn, practice and experience Yoga under the direction of a true guide who is in the state of Yoga, the Honorable Master, Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa.

 

The Sunday Sadhana Program directed by Shri Mahayogi will be held from 3-5pm at Still Mind Zendo: 37 West 17th Street #6W New York, NY 10011

 

***

Here is The SMALL BOOK that Shri Mahayogi mentioned at the end of the class. It is called The Universal Gospel of Yoga. We actually only have a small stock still available for purchase.

Contained within this Gospel are the uniquely comprehensive teachings of Yoga and its practice, excerpted from conversations between Shri Mahayogi and his disciples and devotees. With the sole purpose of Awakening ever-present from beginning to end, he sheds light on the various teachings, practices and disciplines of Yoga. From the physical, such as asana practice and dietary suggestions, the most practical of daily matters, to the most subtle inner-workings of the mind, all is made practicable for the seeker of the modern age. If practiced diligently, the teachings in this Gospel have the power to clearly and precisely direct the seeker to an ever-deepening understanding of the true purpose of life—which is to awaken to the immutable and eternal Truth.

Published originally in Japanese, SATORI-AWAKENING, features a collection of teachings delivered live in public satsangha in Kyoto, Osaka and New York from 2000 to 2006.  This exquisitely designed and unique book contains actual dialogue between the Master, Shri Mahayogi, and disciples or devotees and demonstrates how the teachings of a living and true Enlightened Being lead us to the realization of our universal reality—our True Self.  As we read, we gradually touch upon the purpose of our existence, and understand Yoga as both the method and the goal of our spiritual quest.

Echo From The Cave: 104

Thursday February 21, 2019 NYC

Shri Mahayogi’s Words of Truth Resound in NY:
February 17th Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi

 

“Throughout thousands of years there have been a number of Enlightened Beings who have appeared and delivered the teaching.”

Upon hearing these words at the end of the Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi this past Sunday, we are reminded of how truly uncommon it is to live in a time in which an Enlightened Being has actually appeared and is sitting before us delivering the teaching that has only been conveyed from time to time throughout the past thousands of years.

Even more rare, is to have the opportunity to sit at the feet of such an Enlightened Master and hear the teaching expounded with our very own ears, to see the teaching embodied with our very own eyes, and to feel the presence of the teaching reaching into our very own hearts. But even so, if we sit at the feet of an Enlightened Master, are we aware of it?

What does it even mean for a being to be “Enlightened”? Nowadays the word “Enlightened” or “Enlightenment” has come to be used casually, in reference to a variety of daily scenarios. For example, if someone shares some new information about a topic we may say he or she “enlightened” us on that topic. Or, on the contrary, if we hear the word “Enlightened” we may assume that this is a state that is something quite grand and filled with supernatural experiences. As such, the true meaning of “Enlightened”, indicating the state in which one is completely at one with the One and Only Truth, the same state that Buddha attained, has become diluted, and such a meaning may even be beyond what our minds can make sense of.

So if we do happen to find ourselves at the feet of a true Master, his perfect simplicity, humbleness, and down to earth nature, may not meet our imagined expectation of grandeur, and thus it may be hard for us to recognize. Even so, surely we will feel the lightness of his presence and wonder “how can one become so light and so simple?”

And if we have the opportunity to receive his words, as did the attendees of last Sunday’s Sadhana program, such words may at first seem hard to understand and perhaps out of place compared to the content of our everyday conversations.

For example—Truth, true Self, Existence, Consciousness—these were exactly the words that Shri Mahayogi spontaneously began to speak last Sunday. Such words as these may of course be words that we recognize, but because our everyday conversations may not often focus on such topics, we may wonder about what such words could possibly mean. And even at first these words or topics may seem far too vast to comprehend, as if they have lost place and meaning in the fast-paced world of today. Yet, Truth, true Self, Existence, Consciousness—these words touch upon something that is ancient, yet ageless and timeless.

 

The Truth has to be heard, has to be thought about and has to be meditated on. To be heard—means [you must hear and learn] the words of the teachings from the beings who have become One with the Truth.

Throughout thousands of years there have been a number of Enlightened Beings who have appeared and delivered the teaching. According to them, the Truth has only one universal content. That is, our essence, in other words the true Self, is the Immortal Existence. It is formless; in truth, It is nameless (smiling). Yet, when it was taught, it has been called names such as Atman, Brahman, God, or Existence. That Existence is also the Pure Consciousness. This Consciousness is just like light. And the mind appears in front of that Consciousness and creates various activities. And through the [filter of] the mind, the mind recognizes and experiences various phenomena in the world. But these experiences of the mind don’t have any substance. Because, this world is constantly changing. And no matter how certain some existences can be or no matter how certain happiness can be, they do not last forever. That is why, you have to learn the Truth, the true Existence of the Self and the Immortal Existence, and on the other hand, [the truth of] the illusion of this world.

In order to [learn and realize It], you should do the asana and meditation that you practiced today, and you should learn the Truth or the scripture, and you must practice meditation, deepen your meditation on God or that which is the Truth. I would like you to do that every day at least one hour a day (smiling). If it is difficult for you to practice these daily alone at home, then you come to this class once or twice a week at least. Then perhaps you will need less of your own effort (smiling), but you will be able to get more of a result from it. So, I wish you good luck. (Laughs.) (Joyful laughter from some attendees.)

But this weekend there will be Satsangha, which is a time for questions and answers on various spiritual issues and etc. If you can, come and attend it. The location will be here. Invite any of your friends who are interested and come attend together. The purpose is to find out and realize who you truly are, who your true Self is. (smiling) So, then we shall end now for today.”

—Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa
                                                                                                                      February 17, 2019

 

Whether or not the listener can make sense of the words spoken is not by any means the most essential. In fact, it is quite natural that these words may seem hard to understand—they do indeed indicate something that is beyond what can be understood intellectually.

However, the ability to understand the teaching that is conveyed by a true Master comes little by little, as one practices, as the breath becomes calm and as the waves of the mind begin to smooth out even a little. This kind of teaching is not something that can be understood or made sense of with the intellect, but rather, it must be experienced and tasted in order to understand. The words are simply the keys or the symbols of what lies behind them. All that is left for us to do is practice, just as Shri Mahayogi encouraged all attendees to do. And surely, as we do so, naturally what is right there before our eyes, that which is so simple yet hard to see, will begin to reveal. And as it does, we too can experience what it is to be truly light and simple.

*

This Saturday will be the last Satsangha with Shri Mahayogi during this visit to New York. Don’t miss this precious opportunity to ask questions and receive answers directly from the Master—it is precisely the opportunity he spoke about in the class last Sunday:

“The Truth has to be heard, has to be thought about and has to be meditated on. To be heard—means [you must hear and learn] the words of the teachings from the beings who have become One with the Truth.”

The words from such beings are not merely words, they are filled with reverberating spirit. And, being in the presence of the Master is itself filled with grace and a blessing beyond what even words can express.

 

Satsangha will be held Sat. 2/23 from 3-4:30pm at:
Still Mind Zendo
37 W 17th St, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10011

Register for Satsangha through Eventbrite
http://ssmp2019.eventbrite.com

SADHANA PROGRAM:
Join us Sunday February 24thand March 3rd for the Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi—learn the practice of asana and meditation.

Register for the Sadhana Program through Eventbrite
http://mym2019.eventbrite.com

Echo From The Cave: 103

Saturday February 16, 2019 NYC

Shri Mahayogi’s Words of Truth Resound in NY:
February 10th Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi

 

“FREEDOM”

Does not everyone seek for “freedom”? No matter what our situation or circumstance, we want to feel “free”! But what does it mean to be “free”?

In the United States in particular we are bombarded with the idea of “freedom”. It is one of the very founding ideals of the entire country. Since birth, we are presented with this ideal again and again. Here, we have “freedom”! Here, we protect our right to “be free”! The idea of “freedom” that is fed to us is the idea that we can say and do as we want, that we can “be” who we want to “be”. And along the way this idea transforms into one in which we strive to create a situation for ourselves where we are “free” to always enjoy, “free” to always get what we want and to have things be the way we want them to be, “free” to be rid of the responsibility we don’t want, and “free” to not have to answer to anyone but ourselves.

But what does it really mean to be free?

Surely, in order to seek freedom, we must do so from a state of bondage. So even though we may live in a country that is “free”, why do we still seek the feeling of “freedom” in our everyday situations? Certainly then, whether we realize it or not, we must be experiencing the state of non-freedom, or bondage. Because of that state, we must constantly arrange the conditions around us to feel that sense of freedom anew. But what is it that causes us to experience that non-freedom to begin with? And who is really the one who is experiencing it?

During the Sadhana Program last Sunday (2/10/19), an attendee who met Shri Mahayogi for the first time one week before, returned again to the class. This time, she came with a bouquet of 24 red roses and offered them to the Master at the end. She, who has been a long-time seeker in her heart, finally found a Master. Her mind had been occupied by her Guruji since then.

“Freedom”—on the packaging of the roses there was a sticker indicating the type of rose. Upon receiving the flowers, and seeing this word on the label, Shri Mahayogi, smiling fully, looked at her and with these beautiful red roses. He then taught thus:

 

Freedom—truly this Freedom is precisely the aim of Yoga. You must have always been doing many things in your desire to become Free. (Smiling) But, have you really attained true Freedom? The more you are entangled in this world, as opposed to with Freedom, the more bondage comes. But there is one thing I would like you to remember and take home with you:

That self or “I” that is bound is the mind and the body. And that is not the true Self. The true Self is the Consciousness that has simply seen all these experiences you have had. In fact, there is a Consciousness, the Pure Consciousness that is beyond even the depths of the mind. It is the Eternal Existence that is never destroyed or broken. It is the true Self within everyone. To know that, to experience this is the sole aim of Yoga. This Existence or this Consciousness is itself Freedom. And, there is neither bondage nor suffering in that Freedom at all. And it is filled with Bliss.

Today, you again trained to still your mind and body for some time through practicing asana and meditation for two hours. Your everyday life is too busy. At least for one hour, or even for 30 minutes a day, you should make quiet time—that is what you can do for yourself.

Okay, so then I will see you next week.”

—Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa
February 10, 2019

 

 

Flowers arranged by Shri Mahayogi upon returning to the Cave

Let us take and consider these words of the Master. Let us give up the search for the small momentary sense of freedom that we are forever chasing in our daily circumstances and situations, and let us seek for true Freedom, that is filled with unchanging Bliss. As Shri Mahayogi said during the last Satsangha, let’s start one step at a time, simply by making that quiet time to train to still our mind an everyday habit.

*

We invite you to attend the next Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi, this coming Sunday 2/17 from 3-5pm, and the last special Satsangha (Saturday 2/23) with Shri Mahayogi before he returns to Japan. All the remaining programs will be held at Still Mind Zendo.

Register for the Sadhana Program through Eventbrite
http://mym2019.eventbrite.com

Register for Satsangha through Eventbrite
http://ssmp2019.eventbrite.com

 

Echo From The Cave: 102

Friday February 9, 2019 NYC

Shri Mahayogi’s Words of Truth Resound in NY:
Feburary 3rd Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi

Shri Mahayogi is visiting New York right now and directing the Sadhana Program (Asana & Meditation) each Sunday.

What is truly extraordinary and rather astounding about the asana practice that Shri Mahayogi bestows upon us is that it is coming directly from his own experience. It is indeed hatha yoga, and at first glance, it is easy to think that it is just ordinary hatha yoga. But is it really so? As we begin to practice and experience, we start to get the sense more and more clearly that Shri Mahayogi has experienced the deepest realms of the secret of asana, and it is to that very depth that he is leading us. If we look around and see how difficult it is to find anyone who has experienced and mastered asana to the level of depth as Shri Mahayogi and who then teaches it from that state, then we will start to understand how precious his teaching is!

The forms of the asana may very well look similar to the asana you can find anywhere, yet the content that lies at the heart of the asana is really not at all the same. The more we experience it, the more we will discover how fine-tuned his teaching is, down to subtlest detail, and how what he is giving us through this teaching is truly transformative. Even if we look at the course of history and the past records of asana teaching, has anyone really revealed asana to the extent that Shri Mahayogi is revealing it to us now?

Shri Mahayogi began to practice asana around the age of 14 without a teacher or book—the fact of the matter was that he did not even know these poses existed! But every night he would practice these positions for the following 16 years. In his case, since his body was incredibly flexible to begin with, he began practicing advanced looking asana right from the start. By doing that he discovered the secret of the breath in asana and what asana practice can offer in terms of realizing the true Self. He had already experienced Nirvikalpa Samadhi (complete Awakening) spontaneously at the age 8, so he did not need to practice asana for himself—we can only presume that he went through the experience of practice for the people who would come to follow him later on. This can be said for meditation as well. He meditated constantly beginning from the time he was in high school, but of course, his meditation was quite unlike that of regular people. He meditated on time, space, and the functions of the mind; he found the law of karma through meditation (just like Buddha) and much more. By the time he encountered a translation of the Yoga Sutra in Japanese around the time he was 21, he recognized that he had already experienced in person everything that is written therein and as such, verified the contents of the Yoga Sutra to be true. Shri Mahayogi’s knowledge of the Yoga Sutra is completely different from the knowledge that comes from intellectual understanding, like that of someone who has studied the Sutra well or who is a scholar. He is rather a walking example of the Yoga Sutra, and all his wisdom comes from his very own experiences. What is greater than that!!! It is so humbling that here we have this unbelievable opportunity to learn from such a Master!!!

This past Sunday, again we are reminded that the content of the Asana and Meditation that Shri Mahayogi teaches from his own experience of the ultimate state of Yoga is truly beyond compare!

Here we would like to share how Shri Mahayogi taught at the end of the last class about Asana, Meditation, and their true purpose.

 

“Everybody is searching for something that is certain—peace. Where does it exist? It exists beyond the mind. The true Self is neither the mind nor the body, of course. The authoritative scripture, the Yoga Sutra, states thus: ‘Yoga is the restraint of the activities of the mind. At that time—meaning when the mind is restrained—the Seer remains in its own natural state. And in all other cases the Seer is as if it is assimilated with the activities of the mind.’ Indeed, that is to say, we constantly make the mind act in this world and it is disturbed all the time. But if we can still the mind, at that time the Seer, that is the true Self, will awaken by itself. This is the realization of the Truth that Yoga aims for. Asana are preparation for that. Of course, asana can prepare the body by making it healthy and comfortable too. But what is far more important than that is to change the breathing habits.

The mind and breath are closely connected. When the mind is content and happy, the breath is calm as well. But when the mind is agitated or upset, the breathing becomes so disturbed. Even so, it is very difficult to control the mind directly. It is said that to control the mind is like catching the wind. But how about water? If you can make a container, you can control it or catch at least some. The body is likened to ice. It means that all three of these—solid, liquid and steam—are H2O. (smiling)  So, first you catch the ice, that is the easier [of the three] to catch—and that is asana. By practicing it, you can control the breath little by little. If the breath is always steady, then the mind will never become disturbed. So then, through that peace of mind, you heighten the concentration [in meditation]. Of course, the aim of meditation is to realize the true Self. Well, just like that, this Truth is within everyone already, even now. Realize That swiftly.

So, then see you at the next opportunity.”

                                                                           —Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa
                                                                                                                      February 3, 2019

*

Currently New York is the ONLY location in the world where Shri Mahayogi is regularly offering to instruct Asana and Meditation! What a blessing we have to be in New York, a place where yoga asana can be found as the latest trend on almost every corner, yet we have the opportunity to receive the ancient teaching directly from a true Master of Yoga!!

SADHANA PROGRAM:
Join us each Sunday through March 3rd for the Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi—learn the practice of asana and meditation.

Register for the Sadhana Program through Eventbrite
http://mym2019.eventbrite.com

 

Satsangha will still be held Feb. 23rd, 3:00-4:30pm. Location TBA.

Register for Satsangha through Eventbrite
http://ssmp2019.eventbrite.com

Don’t miss these precious opportunities!!!

 

Echo From The Cave: 101

Friday February 9, 2019 NYC 

Krishna holding Govardhan Hill

Editor’s Note: Pranavadipa Volume 51 

To learn the Truth, one must first find a teacher who has mastered it, one who knows through every ounce of their being. Then one must become humble in order to learn, taking one step at a time to bring one’s mind and actions into alignment with that Truth.

This month’s issue of Pranavadipa (Vol. 51) features a Satsangha that took place in Taipei, Taiwan, in March 2018. In this particular Satsangha, Shri Mahayogi gives practical teaching on what it means to walk the path of Yoga versus the path of karma, the preciousness of life, as well as the preciousness of the opportunity we have before us in every moment to turn from the path of karma and choose the path of Yoga. And at the very end of the Satsangha, there is a special treat for the reader: Shri Mahayogi reveals how he came to understand the world of suffering through the experience of Yoga, rather than through the typical means of study or instruction!

The Testimony this month brings us many words of inspiration from our brother and sister gurubai in Matsuyama, Japan, and is an excellent demonstration of how practitioners humble themselves to listen and to learn how to put the teaching of Yoga into daily practice through the words and examples of others who are also walking and learning the path of Yoga. This is the benefit of sangha, one of the three treasures: Buddha, Dharma and Sanga. The Testimony consists of some excerpts of questions and answers from several Satsangha that were given in Matsuyama by a senior disciple of Shri Mahayogi, as well as the learning and application of that learning by two practitioners who regularly participate in the Yoga activities of Matsuyama. If we read closely and with an attitude of humbleness, we can find many examples of how we, too, can take simple and practical steps along the path to bring ourselves to align with the path of Truth!

Echo From The Cave: 100

Thursday Jan 31, 2019 NYC

Severe weather in New York City  January 31, 2019

ANNOUNCEMENT:
Location for Satsangha with Shri Mahayogi (Feb 2nd, 2019)

This Saturday’s special Satsangha with Shri Mahayogi
will begin at 3pm and be held at:

225E 26th St, # 4E
New York, NY

Space is limited.
If you have not confirmed your attendance already, please e-mail us to do so: info@mahayogiyogamission.org
And please see our Eventbrite page for more info about the event fee, payable online by credit card through Friday 2/1, or at the door by cash or check.

If new to Mahayogi Yoga Mission, please arrive by 2:30pm. All other attendees, please arrive by 2:45pm. 

For attendees who have not pre-registered, for assistance with directions, or for any further questions please contact 828-243-1176 via text message.

Register for Satsangha through Eventbrite
http://ssmp2019.eventbrite.com

Echo From The Cave: 99

Tuesday Jan 29, 2019 NYC

Shri Mahayogi’s Words of Truth Resound in NY:
January 27th Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi

Every one who attended the class this Sunday Jan. 27, was filled with awe when Shri Mahayogi graciously spoke at the end of the class. The words of Shri Mahayogi resounded strongly throughout the room and within the hearts of the attendees. Shri Mahayogi’s powerful message called upon all attendees gathered to see the illusion of the world in front of them and wake up to the Truth!

Before we share Shri Mahayogi’s words, we would like to share with you how the events before this moment unfolded.

*

Last Wednesday class, a young man came to meet his friend at the end of the class. As he waited, he saw the photo of Shri Mahayogi on the table nearby. He was strongly drawn to the photo of Shri Mahayogi, and kept saying “He looks so cool!” He heard from another attendee who is new to the class, the experience of being in Shri Mahayogi’s first class of the visit this past Sunday. That attendee expressed that the class was magical, and he was so grateful that it seems a habit he had been struggling with for some time, was all of the sudden and surprisingly gone after the class.

This young man, never having practiced Yoga, came back to the class, without knowing what to expect, but simply drawn to Shri Mahayogi.

 

Shri Mahayogi accepted one question from him at the end of the class.

Mr. R: I’m aware that you can create your own reality by your thoughts. How does one master that process in order to manifest the reality that they see in their mind?

MASTER: It is just like a dream. You all have all different kinds of dreams while you sleep at night. Just like that, the world that you see right now is developing like a dream too, from the creation of your mind. And almost all phenomena, all the occurrences in the world, are manifestations or creations of many people’s common thoughts, or images, so to speak. Simply, that is it. (laughs) Therefore, they keep changing, and they are not true Existence. It is the same for the mind as well. The mind is always thinking about something, and it creates something all the time. However, the mind is simply the function, it only has the ability to work in this world, and the mind is not itself Existence. Therefore, the true Self is not the mind, the true Self is the Pure Consciousness that sees the mind. That is the Truth of everyone. And that Existence, your true Self was never born and never dies. The true Self exists eternally and always. Of course, It is formless, nameless. Yet It exists clearly as Existence. There is only That. Nothing else exists but That. And that is the Truth of each one of you.

Even though this is the Truth, however, no one knows their own true Self. It’s very strange, isn’t it? (laughs) That is because the mind covers the Truth. Therefore, you must still the mind. The mind—karma, ignorance, pain-bearing obstacles, desires—the mind is defiled by these things. So therefore, by eliminating these things from the mind, the mind will become as if it were transparent. If you do that, then the true Self emerges alone. What you have to learn, what you have to do, is only that—to realize your true Existence.

 

After that Shri Mahayogi gazed at this young man for quite some time. Everyone in the room was captured by this scene of Shri Mahayogi’s gaze! The presence of Shri Mahayogi had already changed the room, then Shri Mahayogi’s answer was probably from a completely unexpected angle, beyond what our mind can even come up with, but his gaze, the power to transmit the Truth through silence…what a moment! We humbly bow down from the depth of our hearts. Who else has such a profound ability to teach the Truth but him!!!

 

After the class, this young man described how when Shri Mahayogi gazed at him, he simply gazed back. And as he gazed he felt a pleasant feeling of warmth and kindness, and he was left with the feeling that he and Shri Mahayogi were one. Though he could not describe exactly what was happening, he said that everything around Shri Mahayogi became blurry and he just wanted this gaze and this moment to continue. He felt that Shri Mahayogi looked as if he were the Buddha himself!

 

***

Here are some comments from some of the other attendees:

Ms. G:
I went in with an open mind, with an attitude to learn as much as I could. But I got something more than what I was expecting. I felt a divine presence from the master, almost like an out of body experience. When there was a long silence after a young participant asked a question and the Master answered, the feeling in the room was overwhelming. I did not understand all the words said but I felt that it is something I will eventually understand as I continue to make an effort to practice. I understood why some people become calm after practicing Yoga. Just as our bodies need nutrients, everything we hear and see become nutrients for our mind and soul. I am excited for what’s in store and I am definitely coming back to class again.

Ms. R:
I am in awe. Thank you for inviting me. About the question at the end: knowing that translation is SO HARD, especially with such ethereal answers, I found some real insight in it and LOVED the eye contact he made with the one who asked the question–that was electric!! The whole experience is VERY MUCH like learning a beautiful language or learning to sing. You KNOW that it will take lots of dedication and time to get to something very beautiful, and you just have to work through all the clumsiness that is natural at first. I will try to attend the Sastangha.

***

We invite you to experience the teaching and blessing of Shri Mahayogi for yourself!

SATSANGHA:
This Saturday please join us for Satsangha—hear Shri Mahayogi’s teaching and take the rare opportunity to ask him questions.

For Satsangha, please reserve a space by Wednesday 1/30. The location will be determined based on number of attendees and we will share the final location on Thursday 1/31.

Register for Satsangha through Eventbrite
http://ssmp2019.eventbrite.com

SADHANA PROGRAM:
Join us each Sunday through March 3rd for the Sadhana Program with Shri Mahayogi—learn the practice of asana and meditation.

Register for the Sadhana Program through Eventbrite
http://mym2019.eventbrite.com

 

 

Echo From The Cave: 98

Monday Jan 21, 2019 NYC

BLESSINGS: Shri Mahayogi is in New York and the Programs begin!

 

GRATITUDE: Words of Welcome to the Master

 

 “Satguru Shri Mahayogi Paramahansa, the Great Teacher, the Great Guru,

 It is with utmost gratitude that we welcome you back to the New York sangha.
To have you here physically, to have you in our presence physically,
is a blessing to all of us in attendance.

 We have read of the great sages of old,
such as Buddha, Lord Krishna, Jesus,
Shri Ramakrishna, Vivekananda, and Lahiri Mahasaya.
We’re inspired by their words and moved by how they lived.
We also understand the rarity of such sons of God.

 The soul can go through countless lifetimes, without ever encountering such an opportunity as this one—to be in the physical presence of an Awakened Master,
such as yourself.
It is through your light that you reveal to us our bondage and how we suffer.
And as the Buddha says,
you show us the way to end our suffering and awaken to our true Self.

Let us seize this precious opportunity to be guided by
the purity of your love and wisdom!”

 

Above are the words spoken by Aniruddha, as a representative of the sangha in New York, at the end of the first class, just after offering the mala (garland of flowers) to Shri Mahayogi. As his words express, we are extremely grateful that Shri Mahayogi has returned to New York and accepted yesterday to guide both the returning practitioners and the many new attendees alike through his offering of the Sadhana Program (Asana & Meditation class).

The first class was packed with many attendees and the strong concentration generated by the practitioners was heightened by the serene presence of Shri Mahayogi, and the space became filled with a strong and keen energy.

We would like to share the following anecdote of what Aniruddha experienced in the moment of offering the mala and words to Shri Mahayogi:

“Knowing it was my responsibility to perform the mala offering to Shri Mahayogi at the first class was an honor and a responsibility I took very seriously. I did not want to stumble over myself trying to remember what to say in this important event to Shri Mahayogi, so I repeatedly practiced the speech. During class in savasana, I recited the speech to myself and during meditation, all I was able to meditate on was the speech to Shri Mahayogi. It was time to walk down the aisle to present the mala to my Guru, and as I knelt in front of him, I became absorbed into his smile and almost forgot there was a room full of people behind me. As I began to speak, the words left my tongue effortlessly, and as I gazed into Shri Mahayogi’s eyes I could feel the joy stirring up in my heart. I was joyful also because I was declaring to the whole audience, especially the newcomers, who this Being is that sits in front of them and how blessed we all are to be here. For myself, I see more and more how Shri Mahayogi is revealing the various bondages that cause me suffering and I look forward to being free from them under his guidance. “

 

The Sunday Sadhana Program directed by Shri Mahayogi will be held from 3-5pm at Still Mind Zendo.

Register for the Sadhana Program through Eventbrite
http://mym2019.eventbrite.com

Satsangha will still be held Feb. 2nd & 23rd, 3:00-4:30pm. Location TBA.

Register for Satsangha through Eventbrite
http://ssmp2019.eventbrite.com

Don’t miss these precious opportunities!!!