Author Archives: Swami Nirmalananda

Mantra Gives You Your Self

By Niranjan Matanich

Normally, where does your mind lead you? Does your mind lead you to identify with your inherent divinity? Most people find their mind keeps them spinning in the mundane world, sometimes giving pleasure and sometimes creating misery and pain.

When you focus your mind on mantra, you experience something else. What you experience isn’t fleeting and it doesn’t end in misery. You experience your Self, your own never-ending and unchanging essence. Your Self is the inner source from which joy, love and bliss arise. Mantra gives you that experience quickly.

I received a mantra from my Guru almost 20 years ago. I wasn’t really sure what a Guru is or what a mantra is, but I recognized the power of the mantra quickly because I couldn’t stop thinking of it. I was drawn to it.

The mantra given by a Shaktipat Guru is the direct route to experiencing your Self. Your real Self, not the self you normally identify with. Like thinking you are your body, or you are your thoughts, or you are your job and any of the other multitudes of selves that you identify yourself as being. Your real Self is beyond all of those roles you play in this world. The mantra that given by a Shaktipat Guru will give you an experience of your Self.

I forget about this from time to time. I am typically overly serious, tending towards dark moods. Sometimes I get so far into those moods that I forget about mantra. Recently I had not been focusing on mantra, and had begun to slip into my darker state of mind.  It was making me really depressed and withdrawn.

Then I remembered my mantra. I made a decision to repeat it out loud for 15 minutes and see what happens. Immediately I could feel a deeper sense of Self coming from a deeper dimension of my being. It was powerful and tangible, the difference I felt right away.  It was still powerful the next morning — I was present, I was cheerful and I was even smiling! It’s truly miraculous. The mantra is the super highway to the Self. But you have to repeat the mantra to find what is hidden in it.

This is explained in the yoga texts:

Cittam mantra.h — Shiva Sutras 2:1

By intensive awareness of one’s identity with the Highest Reality enshrined in a mantra and thus becoming identical with that Reality, the mind itself becomes mantra. — Jaidev Singh

The sutra spells it out.  The highest Reality (the Self, your Self) is enshrined in the mantra given by a Master.  After receiving the mantra, you find what’s enshrined by repeating it; it’s like unwrapping a gift to see what’s inside. Once you find what’s enshrined in the mantra, you know yourself as the Self.  Beyond that, the sutra promises your mind itself will become mantra, a major upgrade.

Swami Nirmalananda says, “To gain yoga’s promise, simply do what the sages tell you to do.  For your mind to become mantra, simply repeat mantra enough times that your mind vibrates at a higher frequency.  How many times is enough?  It is different for every person, but it exceeds the number of times you review your worries.  Which will serve you better, repeating your worries or repeating mantra?”

The average person thinks around 65,000 thoughts a day, with most of those thoughts creating your worldly identities. Yet you can repeat mantra silently for the classical 108 times in only 1 minute. How many repetitions before you become identified with the Self that is enshrined in the mantra? I don’t have the answer for you but I can guarantee you won’t regret finding it out for yourself.

Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati is a Shaktipat Guru, who can give you a mantra that reveals your Self to you.  It works because of the blessings of the Masters in her lineage, each of whom found the Self by using the mantra.  The experience of Self is enshrined in the mantra.  Because of that, you will also be able to find what’s inside you, deeper within, beyond your mind.  You are more than you think you are.

OM svaroopa svasvabhavah namo namah

To your Inherent Divinity again and again I bow.

To support the students of Svaroopa Vidya Ashram, please contribute to our scholarship fund.

The Four States of Awareness

by Mati (Sandy) Gilbert

I love waking up in the morning, before the alarm goes off, wanting to lie still and stay quiet.  To luxuriate in that cozy experience, not wanting it to end, not fully awake but not asleep either…  I always called it my “La La Land” time, when I experience inner contentment and bliss.

This is beyond the three states of awareness that everyone recognizes, which are waking, dreaming, and deep sleep.

When you are awake, you are thinking, moving, talking, and doing things.  Even when you are just sitting there or doing nothing and are aware of it, you are awake.

You dream every night.  Some you remember.  I used to write mystery novels in my dreams and I was the all the characters.  All the while, I was aware that I was dreaming the story.  Mystery novels were what I liked to read at that time.

In deep sleep, your body and mind are inactive and relaxed. You are unconscious.

However, there is a 4th state.  It is called “turiya,” which is translated as “the fourth state.”  A sutra explains: “Turiya should fill all three states, not just the beginning and the end of each.”   — Shiva Sutra 3.23 (translated by Swami Nirmalananda Saraswati)

It’s easy to find turiya — when you wake up and then fall back asleep, but are not fully asleep, as well as at the beginning and end of every dream.  Even when you are awake, this deeper state of consciousness is just below the surface of your awareness, just behind the part of your mind that you usually look at.

Turiya is pure bliss, the bliss of the Self, which is your own Divine Essence.  Meditation is the direct route to this bliss; the purpose of meditation is to find your own Self and keep you there, even with your eyes open.

Swami Nirmalananda describes it this way, “While in Turiya, your mind can be busy or quiet.  Your normal thoughts and worries don’t disturb your inner depths.   The sages describe it like the waves on the surface of the ocean, that don’t affect the mountains, valleys and creatures that live in the depths.  Meditation is your opportunity to dive deep for an inner experience, but its true goal is that you live from that deep and centered level of your own Beingness .”

This sutra promises you can live in the constant experience of consciousness, the transcendental bliss of your own Divine Essence, whether waking, dreaming or sleeping.  You attain this goal through meditation, through manta repetition, and through cultivating consciousness while in the midst of life.

Currently, I read fewer mystery novels and read more works of the yogic masters.  Since I started meditating regularly, I write fewer novels in my dreams as well.

Turiya, to me, is all encompassing.  The inner depth is there, when I am dreaming and in deep sleep.  I appreciate it most during my waking hours.  Turiya hovers in the background of my mind and being, and keeps me on an even keel during my day-to-day activities.  What a way to live!

OM svaroopa svasvabhavah namo namah

To your Inherent Divinity again and again I bow.


Wanting What the World Cannot Give

By Niranjan Matanich

Why do I feel such a deep sense of dissatisfaction? My life is great, my needs are met. I have extra resources so I can do the things I want. I have many people that I care about in my life. Yet, I have an underlying dissatisfaction.

This feeling keeps me looking for something to make me feel satisfied, usually it’s some material thing. But you know what, that new Judas Priest record didn’t do it. Neither did the new seat on my motorcycle. Turns out binging on donuts isn’t it either.

On some level, I know that material items aren’t going to fill the void I feel. Having just the right kind of relationship isn’t going to do it either. In fact, nothing in this whole world is going to fill that inner void. Maybe you’ve experienced some of this dissatisfaction, too.

This underlying dissatisfaction is a deep yearning. A deep yearning to know who you are. The yearning is there to direct you to look inward to find that you are the Self.  You are the one Consciousness that has manifested this whole universe and beyond but, through the process of creation, you have forgotten your Self. The yearning is Consciousness, your own Self arising within, calling you to your Self. Without this yearning, you never have any impulse to look beyond the outer world.  You don’t discover your own Divinity.

This yearning will lead you to a Guru who can awaken your Kundalini, the dormant energy coiled at the base of your spine. This energy animates your body; it’s the energy that has manifested this entire world. When Kundalini is awakened, you turn within and become aware of your inner Self. The goal of this awakening is to become established in the knowing of your own Self.  This is described in a pivotal sutra:

Udyamo bhairava.h — Shiva Sutras 1.5

Swami Muktananda defines it this way. “When the Guru’s Grace is received, one’s Shakti is unfolded… meditation comes spontaneously… The seeker turns within. Awareness of the inner Self begins to throb all the time within him. To stay in this awareness is the right effort for the seeker.”

Once your receive this awakening, the right effort is to stay in this awareness — of your own Self. When you are feeling that yearning, rather than trying to avoid it by indulging in material things, you choose to meditate or repeat the mantra your Guru gave you.

Making that choice becomes easier after you’ve received the Guru’s Grace because you know what the yearning is. And you know what to do to when you are feeling it. It’s true, sometimes I still forget and think the answer is in the new thing. Sometimes you’ll forget, but the Guru’s Grace ALWAYS leads you back to your own Self!

OM svaroopa svasvabhavah namo namah

To your Inherent Divinity again and again I bow.

I Want That Difference

By Yogeshwari Fountain

Every day has a predictable rhythm to it. In the morning, you wake up and stay awake until bedtime. Then you drift off to sleep and alternate between dreaming and dreamless sleep. Most people never give this a second thought, even though there is a more profound level of experience underlying this cycle. The ancient yogis called this the fourth state of being: deeper than your thoughts, eternal, ever-present and all sustaining.  Shankaracharya’s Vivekachudamani  describes this:

“You are pure consciousness, clearly manifest as underlying the states of waking, dreaming, and dreamless sleep.”

Consciousness, the One Ultimate Realty that manifested everything into existence, is being you. The substratum of your existence is concealed under your waking, dreaming and dreamless sleep. There’s more to you, a level that is always aware.  Your awareness is deeper than you usually recognize.  Consider, who reports your dreams to you in the morning? A level of your mind may have been in a deep sleep, but your awareness is always aware, and knows.

While this subtle knowing of your Self is most directly accessed in meditation, you are still you, even when you’re not turning your attention inward.  Your own existence pervades your every waking moment, as well as your dreams and dreamless sleep.   This is the same for a living Guru, but they live in the inner knowing of this. Unlike most of us, who dip in and out, the Guru consciously abides in this fourth state of awareness all the time, while simultaneously enjoying the Divine play of the other three.

I discovered this watching my teacher, Swami Nirmalananda, butter her toast. At the breakfast bar, other yogis were in a hurry to grab their food and move on. But Swami was fully present to what she was doing. It was as if the toast, the knife and butter, the movements of her body and the air around her, had a density to it. As I watched her, it seemed like time stood still. I was pulled in, as if in a trance. It was then I realized that Great Beings may look like us on the outside, but on the inside they are quite different. And as unattainable as it seemed, I want that difference! Not just the understanding of it, but to experience it. This is why I practice yoga.

Only the Guru can awaken you to such a Divine way of living. It is by the Guru’s grace, not my efforts alone, that I am being propelled past my limited sense of time and space, into my capital-S Self.  Shaktipat is what initiates this process, “growing you” like a seedling into your fullest potentiality: the knowing of your own Self.  I experienced this depth one day in meditation.  When the timer went off, I just couldn’t bring myself to open my eyes. Later when I told this to a friend, she asked “Well, why do you need to come out, why would you ever want to leave your Self?”

The truth is, I never want to lose my Self, even though I still do! My mind gets busy, and I forget how it felt to rest in my Self.  To submerge myself again, I repeat mantra, while in the midst of my mundane activities and just before I go to sleep. And I think of my Guru.  I try to remember her living example of the fourth state, of timeless beingness, as if it were my own. When I do this, I become more present in my own Presence.

These are just a few of yoga’s many tools for spiritual integration. In these small and potent ways, life for me is gradually becoming wholly divine.

OM svaroopa svasvabhavah namo namah

To your Inherent Divinity again and again I bow.

From Fear to Freedom

By Mati (Sandy) Gilbert

I was born with a sense of being incomplete.  Something was missing in my life.  It turned out to be my spirituality.  Over the years, I tried many and varied methods to fill this void.  Most didn’t work,  some did for a short while.  Then the old sense of incompleteness came back.  It wasn’t until I turned to yoga, poses at first, then meditation.  Eventually, I found the inner yoga.  It placed me on my path to knowing my inner divinity, my Self.

Shiva Sutras 1.5: Udyamo bhairava.h
When the Guru’s Grace is received, one’s inner Shakti is unfolded… meditation comes spontaneously… the seeker turns within.  Awareness of the inner Self begins to throb all the time within him.  To stay in this awareness is the right effort for the seeker.  — Swami Muktananda

Why did it take me so long to find what was missing?  It was fear.  Some fears are small and others larger.  Some go away and some stay around for many years.  My greatest fear was my feeling of being incomplete.  It took the awakening by a Master Teacher to allow me to begin to understand what was missing, why it is so important, and the steps necessary to feel complete.  I had to put myself in the hands of someone who knew how to put me on the path of self-realization.

The world is made of energy. You, as part of that world, are made of energy.  When your inner spiritual energy is activated and unfolds within you, the experience of the wholeness within is clear.

Swami Nirmalananda says, “Yoga calls this your own Self, your Divine Essence.  You were born to know your own Self.  You were born with a feeling of being incomplete so that you would look for your Self.  Finding it is easy when you work with someone who has already found it.  That’s what my Guru gave me and what I give to others.”

While you are made of energy, there is a hidden dimension to that energy that must be activated.  This mystical upward rising energy is available to everyone.  Once awakened, this upward rising energy is like “Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park, the world’s most recognizable geyser.  While it is not the highest geyser in Yellowstone, it is by far the most regular.

Your upward rising energy has a name — Kundalini.   It moves upward, starting at your tailbone, through your spine, your conduit to Consciousness.  This Divine Energy melts away your inner blockages, revealing your own Beingness.

Shaktipat initiates the awakening of your dormant energy.  It is a rare and special blessing, given by those who have dedicated their life to carrying the ancient yogic tradition to the next generation.  Swami Nirmalananda is such a Master.

There are two types of Shaktipat – intentional and spontaneous Kundalini.  Spontaneous Kundalini can occur when you hear of such a Master, if your practices thus far have prepared you enough.

Intentional Shaktipat happens when you ask for Kundalini awakening by an authorized Guru. With the transmission of this power of Consciousness, meditation comes easily.  You turn within.  Your fears dissolve.  You become aware of the Inner Divinity that is your true identity, progressively more and more, until you live in the knowing of your own Self all the time.

You start out with an early impulse that something is missing.  You search out alternatives and read how to books.  Your desire to know is coming from a deep impulse arising within you.  What is that impulse?  It is your own Self (named Bhairava in the above sutra) which moves you forward, as well as inward, so you can discover who you really are and have always been.  Shaktipat propels you farther and faster than you can ever go on your own.  It is the gift of Grace arising within.

Exploring the Mystery Within

By Mangala Allen

Your own human body is a mysterious place full of infinite wonder. When you look deeper than merely your body, even deeper than your mind, what you discover inside is a treasure that enhances your life in every way. You discover your own Self.  Yoga is the key that unlocks the gateway that allows you to explore within.

It only takes one taste of what is inside to propel you on your journey to realizing your own Self. You get that taste in the moment your mind becomes still. You have experienced this many times in your life. Perhaps it was gazing into the vastness of a star filled sky. Something happened inside; you experienced an uprising of bliss. You experienced bliss beyond thought. This supreme bliss continually vibrates within the deepest dimensions of your own being. The problem is you are not usually aware of this treasure within.

One day my granddaughter was miserable. I asked, “Do you know what miserable is?” She told me, “It’s when I want something and I can’t have it right now!”

This is the human dilemma. You want to be joyful, but you can’t always make that happen. You become lost in your misery and don’t know what to do. Don’t wait for external circumstances to be just right, for the bliss that provides is temporary and short-lived. The inner experience of the bliss of your own Beingness is accessible through meditation on the Self. The more you have this experience of Self inside, the more delight you find in your life.

My teacher Swami Nirmalananda puts it this way:

“Bliss arises from your core, expands to fill your heart and mind, and overflows into your life and into the world. This process is happening from the inside outward.”  

I know this to be true. I have learned that looking outside is going in the wrong direction. I take time to sit, to quiet my mind and experience the treasure within. Then I take my experience into my life and delight in the experiences I encounter in the world.

OM svaroopa svasvabhava namo nama.h

To your Inherent Divinity again and again I bow.

You Are Consciousness

by Niranjan Matanich

“You are Consciousness-Itself. You are the Source and Essence of the Universe, and Beyond.” Swami Nirmalananda

I first heard this teaching in 2001. After many years of searching for the spiritual path that would answer my questions, this teaching stopped my searching. Somewhere deep inside of myself I felt like I found it, the Truth. I couldn’t explain it at the time but I knew I found what I had been looking for. I’ve been on this path ever since.

From the time when I was around 8 years old I knew there was more to life than just mundane existence, but I didn’t know what that “more” was. I was raised to be Christian. I tried hard to connect with God in the way that I was taught but, when I asked some of the harder questions, people in my church or my Mom told me, “God just doesn’t want you to know certain things.” I was never satisfied with that answer. It never made sense to me that God was “out there” somewhere.

I spent over 20 years searching for the spiritual path that would fill the void in myself that I was feeling.  Then I discovered the teachings of Kashmir Shaivism that says that I am Consciousness, that Consciousness is my own Self. I read that Consciousness manifested as this whole universe including me.  God is not separate from me. God doesn’t live in the sky somewhere.

An analogy for this is the ocean waves. You see many waves in the ocean and each wave appears to be individual. But really, it’s all the ocean. When you look around and see all the different people, animals, trees, grass, the sky, the stars, and beyond — it’s all Consciousness.  The essence of all things is the same, there is no difference. The teachings of Kashmir Shaivism explain this in detail and promise that you can know this experientially, within yourself.

The teachings are not theory.  Following the teachings and practices, given by Masters who have found this Truth within themselves, will give you the experiential knowing that you are Consciousness. You are the source of the Universe.

Swami Nirmalananda describes it this way:

It was Baba Muktananda’s presence that made the theory real for me.  He was flesh and blood, alive, tangible, undeniable.  Being in His presence propelled me into my own Self, precisely because Baba was established in Self.  He also gave me teachings and practices to do, so I could get there on my own.  And He made me able to share this with you.

By chanting, meditating, studying, and especially being in relationship with a Guru you will come to know that you are so much more than you think you are.

Swami Nirmalananda, the spiritual head of Svaroopa Vidya, is such a Guru. She is able to reveal the Truth of your own being to you, because she has found it in herself and lives in that knowing all the time.

OM svaroopa svasvabhava namo nama.h

To your inherent Divinity, again and again I bow.

Clearing the Path for Your Light to Shine

By Yogeshwari (Melissa) Fountain & Swami Nirmalananda

“This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.”  The teaching of the ancient yogic sages say there’s nothing “little” about the light of your being. Deep inside each human being radiates a light that is brighter than the sun. It is the source of the universe itself, ever pulsating, ever existent, illuminating your mind, heart and soul.

Far beyond what your mind tells you, this inner light is what’s guiding your thoughts, actions and sense of Self in the world. Yet it’s not always easy for you to recognize this.  Fortunately, the practices of yoga specialize in revealing your inner illumination, teaching you how to live everyday in the light of certainty and freedom.

“The light of your own being shines into your life, from its inner source, only when you clear the pathway – your mind.”
-Swami Nirmalananda

The source of your being is not your mind, but that which your mind is made of: Consciousness-Itself. Your inner Essence is vast, eternal, all-knowing.  You existed before you were born, and will continue to exist after your body dies. Who you are is both subtle and profound, like the silence between the roars of ocean waves or the stillness of a mountain. Swami Nirmalananda says that you will only bring this depth of being into your life when you have cleared the pathway of your mind.  And one of the most powerful ways to do this is with self-Inquiry, which we call “vichara.”

Even though I meditate daily, and repeat my mantra, my mind can still loop around itself and get tangled up! And the more I try to figure something out, the more confusing it gets. But there is an inner knowing, beyond the mind. Vichara is a way to question my own mind by opening it up into a non-judgmental spaciousness.

Whether I’m facilitated by a trained Vichara Therapist, or doing it on my on with pen and paper, vichara begins with asking, “What am I aware of?” As my thoughts unspool, the questions, “How so?” and “In what way?” shine the light of Consciousness through my mind. It’s never about finding an answer, but more about unmasking my reactions and objections. It’s like rearranging stacks of boxes in the basement, and finding a shaft of light streaming through a window I’d forgotten was there.   I am always amazed at how much lighter and happier I feel after dissolving unrecognized mental patterns.

Your inner light is always shining, it is your own Self, the Source of Life-Itself. Yoga turns your awareness inward; Shaktipat gives you the experience of your own Divinity.  But because of inner resistance, you have to meet your mind, again and again, with a question or two: “How so?” and in “in what way?”

All of yoga’s techniques are to help you quiet your mind, so you open the doorway to your own Self.  You can then learn be free from the landmines  your mind used to lay for you.  Not only do you gain greater clarity and understanding about your “small-s” self and your life, but ultimately the goal is freedom    Mantra and meditation reveal  the fullness and truth of who you really are: Consciousness-Itself.  Self-inquiry helps you bring it into the world.

Happiness — Then and Now!


By Mati Gilbert

Happiness is pleasure, as the thesaurus says.  It’s a feeling of happy satisfaction and enjoyment, something most people want more of.  But that was never much of a motivator for me.  For decades I got happy by getting feedback from external sources:  by accomplishing things, plus how my family and friends treated me, as well as how I presented myself to the world and its response to me.

My whole life used to be about using outside sources to make me happy, multiple outer sources that rarely lined up together.  Today, I know different.  Through the practice of yoga, I have found happiness on the inside.

Swami Nirmalananda, explains this process is revealed in yoga’s ancient texts:

In the moment your mind becomes still, you abide your own Divine Essence.

Yogas-chitti-nirodhah — Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras 1.3

You have certainly found the Absolute Reality of your own Divinity in everyday events, here and there along the way.  Think about when you had to have – and I mean really had to have – that piece of chocolate.  You have an experience your Divine Essence just after you bite into that chocolate, in the first moment of tasting it.  You can even remember the moment, the second that you actually taste the bite you’ve taken.  This is the experience of the Self.

Every time your mind stops, you have an experience of your own Divine Essence.  This is the inner happiness that yoga promises.   You experience “svaroopa,” as Patanjali names it, which is the bliss of your own Beingness.  This is technically “meditation-in-action.”

Sitting to meditate is actually an easier and better way to access your Self.  Yoga has tools for your mind, tools that quiet your mind, so your meditation takes you beyond your mind, where your own Self is already waiting for you.

You do so many things to keep your mind active: socializing, over-indulging and other relentless activities.  You keep doing things in order to keep your mind from being still.  Maybe stillness is a little scary.  Yet, stillness allows you to experience your Divinity, who you actually are, deep down inside yourself.  Once you attain the goal of abiding in your own essence, you take yourself with you wherever you go.  What is scary about that?

Learn how to meditate.  You need a teacher who can propel you past your mind, to experience your own Self.  Then you can easily meditate daily, and you will notice many differences in your life.  Your daily life is still there.  Your activities may not change, but how you react to them will be so different. Once you find your Self, you will no longer depend on outside sources to make you happy.  You will abide in an inner fullness that is even better than mere happiness.

I no longer depend on the approval of others or outside sources to make me happy.  While I experience happiness during meditation, it keeps me on an even keel during all my day-to-day activities.  I feel so much more grounded each day knowing that I am Divine.  Mantra and meditation provided me this security and peace of mind.  Wouldn’t you like to feel this way all the time? Mantra and mediation will give you your own Self.

OM svaroopa svasvabhavah namo namah

To your Inherent Divinity, again and again I bow.

Divine Emotions

By Mangala Allen

Riding the emotional rollercoaster can be a thrilling ride as well as a dedicated lifestyle. It is also a ride that keeps you from experiencing the greatest joy you have ever known.  It blocks your ability to live in the ever-arising bliss of your own Beingness in every moment of your life.

Your emotions are merely physical sensations, triggered by the thoughts that pass through your mind. When you think about something, your body reacts the same as if it is really happening. Your thoughts and emotions are inseparable.

This morning I woke from a dream, startled and confused. I was in a panic trying to figure out how the incidents in my dream could have happened. It was playing out in my head as if it were real. Physically, my experience was as though it all had really happened.

Your experience of your life is not based in circumstances. It is based in your thoughts about them. If you approve of how your life is going, you feel happy. If you don’t, you are not. And there is a large range of emotions to experience in between.

Your emotional condition is created by your thoughts. One researcher estimates that the average person thinks 65,000 thoughts a day. How many are positive and uplifting, and how many are negative, assuming the worst? Unfortunately, many of these thoughts are repetitive; you keep living through them over again and again.

The only way to get off the rollercoaster is to find a deeper dimension of your own being.  This changes your reactions to circumstances, as Swami Nirmalananda describes:

Like a three-year old who cries when their block tower falls, you crumble in the face of life’s difficulties.  But when the three-year old grows up, she or he takes the falling of the block tower in stride.  When you grow into your Self, the experiencing of your own Divinity, you’ll take life’s events in stride, too.

Yoga’s goal is for you to experience your own Self.  Most people focus on the external benefits of health, beauty, youth and vitality.  As wonderful as these are, there is more available to you.  To find the Self, the sages knew that you need to quiet your mind. Fortunately, every yoga practice is actually for your mind.

When I awoke from my dream, startled, confused and in a panic, my physical experience was as if it all really happened. Mentally I knew it hadn’t. I reminded myself of this and stopped the thought train from rushing on. Calmness ensued. I have learned a lot about my mind from my yoga studies. My yoga practices hone me for living a life focused on stillness and the opening it provides.  Yet yoga promises more:

“As the mind is stilled, the emotions are also stilled. Through the practices… the mind can be freed from the forces (that drive it), and it is possible to live in purity and light all the time. You will still have feelings, but they will be purified and positive; they will be divine emotions.”
– Swami Muktananda

Yoga’s practices quiet your mind. When your mind becomes still, you open to the bliss that is you; you experience your own Self. Each experience of Self enables you to be more present in your life. You become calm and steady on the inside. You experience your life from an inner fullness that affects how you react to your circumstances. See the incredible simplicity. Use yoga to still your mind and the magic will occur.

OM svaroopa svasvabhava namo namah