Yoga Mail

By A Seeker

Finding the truth about oneself and the existence within this creation has become a road less travelled because we become so lost in living “life” rather than understanding it. If we do take that journey, we realise that we travel with a sheath of darkness until the darkness is dispelled and clarity appears in its absolute.

Once we go on a search for the meaning of life and death, and the reason for creation, with the deepest intensity, I believe we will start to experience life in a way that is difficult to understand and comprehend. However, we find nature has its own way of taking us into Her arms and guiding us to the truth – the Absolute Truth.

With the grace of the Universe, which I see as the Divine Mother, I am writing this article to share a humbling experience. I believe my journey in finding the truth began several years ago – meeting a few ‘Gurus’ along the way. However, the journey found the root when I started Kriya Yoga under the guidance of my beloved Master – Kriya Yogi Manisekaran – for whom I would always have my gratitude and reverence for his continuous blessings and guidance.

Fear replaced by joy

My curiosity this year intensified and I started the journey in many different ways to understand the meaning of my being here in this dimension. Raja Yoga and Bhakti Yoga are my main paths in trying to understand the meaning of life and to understand the “Spirit” that I am. Some call it becoming spiritual, but attach a very great meaning to it… so much so it has become superficial rather than keeping it simple and becoming naturally woven with nature. When this understanding of being simple and “extraordinary” (a state of being more and more ordinary rather than a thought of greatness for which the word “extraordinary” is often used) seeped into my mind, a simple experience happened, slowly but surely changing the way I take the journey in understanding myself.

I was blessed to be at the foothill of the Velliangiri Hills, India, a few months ago and I was deeply thinking about the meaning of life. This happened after going through a turmoil of thoughts in the few weeks preceding my journey. I was walking along the sacred place contemplating on what I thought I already knew about life and its existence. As I went back to my simple room and lied back on the bed… just watching the ceiling fan doing its existential duties… I pondered on what life is all about. The thoughts of what I thought “already knew” came about.

In a sudden moment, I felt all the knowledge I seemingly had about life disappear. I couldn’t remember anything, but I know I am just here.

First, fear came into me. I thought I had lost my mind. Other than my being here, I couldn’t remember anything. I just knew I was here. I felt that all the supposed knowledge I had, had been completely wiped out. A voice inside me said “I don’t know anything about life. I have not experienced it.” Then the feeling of fear disappeared and was replaced by joy, calmness and total bliss. In fact, I was happy that all the existing knowledge had disappeared.

Total bliss for no apparent reason

Now I realise that this is what Master Manisekaran once mentioned in class about being happy and in a state of total bliss for no apparent reason. A short moment of bliss felt like a lifetime. But longing for such feeling again continues.

This is where I believe I got the greatest lesson of my life. It is a lesson for me to understand that I don’t know anything about life. What I know is only the pieces of knowledge gathered that made me a believer. But none experienced. I learnt that in the journey of understanding the self, one has to let go of everything that one believes in and start afresh. This may be extremely difficult because our current knowledge, including from the spiritual texts, would have been deeply rooted in us and would have provided us the feeling of “Significant Self”. I learnt that one has to become insignificant first, in order to experience existence.

This teaching has now become the very basis of my life and the way I approach the study of spirituality. This very experience turned me into a “Seeker” rather than a “Believer”. In me, I asked. “How can I go through a lifetime without knowing what creation is, but exist in this dimension by merely being enveloped in beliefs?” Would the beliefs gathered from books (even from the sacred spiritual books), teaching from Gurus and all other channels of information, which are mere information, be sufficient when my last “Prana” leaves the physical body? I told myself that if even all I can do in this lifetime is to scratch the surface of the truth, it is sufficient in anticipation of continuous learning in the next dimension, if it exists.

I see seekers of truth quoting the Gita, Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas and other religious sacred books as absolute truth. Their joy seems to stem from the fact that they have read these sacred books and they have become learned and know the whole truth of life. Here, I must say unequivocally that I am not arguing the truth of the sacred texts; I am merely asking myself how I know it is the truth for me. All these texts provide me a guide, but to understand life, I need to experience it.

As one Spiritual Master said, “I teach you what I know, but it is not the truth for you unless you have experienced it.”

After I wrote the above paragraph, I came across a book while cleaning my study room. It was surprising that I went into a page that Swami Rama of the Himalayas was told by his Guru that indirect knowledge of life is no knowledge at all, but only experience of life is true. He mentioned that one can gather knowledge from the text, but go and find out whether what is mentioned in the sacred books is true, by experiencing it. This is true learning.

The experience in the Velliangiri Hills taught one of the most fundamental things to me. It truly changed my perspective in taking this journey of lifelong learning… that is to become a seeker rather than a believer and start anew without having the fear to let go of all previous knowledge.

What I am hoping from writing this article is to share the understanding that knowledge comes in many forms. It dispels the darkness from us. They are great guides for us. While we continue to learn, consider becoming a “Seeker” rather than a “Believer” and do not be afraid to let go of all that we have learnt, that would have created the “Significant Self”.

I leave this article with a short note to thank the Universe, of which I see as the Great Divine Mother – The Preserver of Creation:

Salutation to You, My Dear Divine Mother
Humbled By Your Love and Compassion
Which You Bless Me without Any Contemplation
Your Love for Your Son Sees No Boundaries

I Feel Your Illumination
As Your Shadow’s Warmth Graces My Being
A Feeling of Immortality Senses Me
As I Am With You, At All Times and Dimension

-A Seeker of Life