By Swami Shrutananda
Really! Where is God? God is inside. The One Divine Reality has chosen to become the universe and everything in it. This is described in the Pratyabhij~nahrdayam, sutra 4:
Citi-sa.mkocaatmaa cetano’pi sa.mkucita-vi”sva-maya.h.
Consciousness willingly takes on contraction, in order to become both the universe and the individuals, who have the universe as their bodies in a contracted form. – Rendered by Swami Nirmalananda
Before yoga, I looked for God outside. God was up there somewhere. My mind would imagine a white bearded guy up in the sky. Some people see God as the formless. Others see God in nature: in the sky, the trees, the majesty of the mountains, etc.
Yoga agrees that God can be experienced when you look outside. This is because the One Divine Reality manifested all things and becomes all things. Yet this sutra also says more.
The One Divine Reality, called “Consciousness” in this sutra, has chosen to become everything in this universe, including you. God has become you and me. Now, consider which is closer, God on the outside or God on the inside? This is why yoga gives you practices for looking inside — particularly meditation.
“Self” is the word yoga uses for the One Divine Reality when found inside. Meditation, especially Svaroopa® Vidya Meditation, gives you deep and profound experiences of your own Self. God has not only become me, but God is also being me. God is being you. This is a pretty radical statement.
At first, I didn’t take this teaching personally. Yet I finally got it when I heard my Guru — Gurudevi — explain it. She said, “Seeing your own inner Self is more tangible than the sky.” When I heard those words, God crystalized into being me. In my physical body, with my mind, through all the levels of my own being, I experienced that I am God. I am the One Divine Reality whether looking outside or inside. There was a joy, an aliveness, a delight in being me!
This is the foundation of all the yoga practices and teachings: God is being you. Where is God? Right here! You are a physical tangible expression of the One Divine Reality. Additionally, your mind is a contracted form of the One Divine Reality. God is being you.
To fully understand this radical statement, you have to personalize it. Say it out loud, or even whisper to yourself, “I am a physical, tangible expression of the One Divine Reality.”
God wants to be you. God, the Self, is willingly choosing to be you with all your quirks and idiosyncrasies. God delights in being you. All you ever wanted was to be more you. This is what yoga gives you. Yoga gives you the knowing and the experience that God is being you. It is time to know that you are truly Divine.
How do you come to know?
- Do more Satsangs with Gurudevi. She offers them every Sunday and Wednesday online or in person. Gurudevi’s teachings and presence propel you inward to experience yoga’s profound, mystical truth that you are the Self.
- Do more meditation. Meditate every day. For support in making your daily meditation consistent, join our online Meditation Club. Gurudevi will make meditation deep and easy for you.