When One meets an Enlightened Master

KA2_092-7167011-52055_650x250The inquiry that is held for a spiritual aspirant is one that is dealt with in complete honesty and based on the truth alone. This inquiry deepens as the insight settles and a new door to Existence is discovered, opened and one walks through it.

There comes a time when one has to truly evaluate on the progress one has made. If I am not going to evaluate, if I carry on blindly in the darkness, will Light every really enter my heart? The evaluation must also occur on a regular basis.

The path begins when one meets an Enlightened Master. In the East, we call them ‘Satguru’ which means the Teacher of Truth. It is in this very meeting that one realizes that the ego has been running the show and that now it is time to realize who the True Self is – it is an entity, an energy that is without form, without image, without an other. It is eternal and infinite. It is birthless and deathless. It is upon this discovery that the seeker finds themselves grateful for what the Enlightened Master has shown and begins to refine their being with this realization of their True Self.

There comes a time when one has to leave the Enlightened Master and in fact, it would be encouraged by the Enlightened Master that you should now walk alone as everything that could be given, every pointing that has been pointed to, every teaching that has been taught now rests in the space of your own self.

It is the moment of surrender when one leaves the Enlightened Master, grateful and with great respect, the seeker leaves and starts to unleash the potential of the Self within. This is the grace of the Enlightened Master. This is truly the purpose of the Enlightened Master.

If an Enlightened Master has accumulated followers that begin to feel they know everything, that they have the Truth then things stagnate. The birth of a new religion is there instead of a movement. Arrogance and dependency is born, along with it fear and anxiety.

Questions arise of life without the Enlightened Master. In fact, even to ask this question will create much dread. This brings about blind faith. The Enlightened Master has shown the way, now the apparent ‘seekers’ close the door, they build a gate, they build a wall so that you can’t escape.

In this moment, there is little the Enlightened Master can do. Escaping is an option, and the seekers that are true, that know that their wings are to be used, they understand that it is not the Messenger that is important, it is the Message. Once they realize this, they fly and along with it, the Enlightened Message follows.

The followers adore the Messenger, they do so out of their own ego. They build up an ‘us vs. them’ attitude, they begin to feel that the world doesn’t know the truth because they have got the Messenger. Little do they realize, that without the Message, the Messenger can do very little.

The Message lives in those that move beyond the convention of Master-Disciple and merge into the Oneness of Seeker-Enlightened Master-Formless Energy. This is the Holy Trinity. This is the Ultimate Peak in the spiritual process.

When the Enlightened Master leaves their body, do not fear. Do not lose hope. Go back to the Message. Go back to the Truth that was unveiled to you in the very first meeting. Begin to practice again. Re-awaken the drive to do the best you can in your spiritual journey.

One thing has to be understand, neither is the seeker perfect nor is the Enlightened Master perfect. Both are human and to be human is to have ‘flaws’. People term it as flaws but it is actually the personality of the individual. The inherent Spirit remains untouched and is fully embraced by the Message. The embodiment of the Message remains perfect.

The ego of a follower can do anything, it can turn the Greatest Being into a breathing Statue and begins to worship the body alone. The relationship between a true seeker and the Enlightened Master has to be based on development and personal tutelage. Without these two, can real spiritual growth occur?

Maybe an Enlightened Master has hundreds of thousands of followers but really they are only available for a few? An organization may be created out of this but it is those few that remain beyond the organization and their hearts become the beating heart of the Enlightened Master.

There are problems with having a Guru and there are benefits in having a Guru. Who knows if your Guru is a SatGuru. Many claim this title of ‘Satguru’ in the spiritual community. Maybe, it is a matter of faith. The way I see it, a Teacher of Truth (Satguru) shows you, your true being. They show you that you are the embodiment of God in the simplest way possible. Anyone that teaches you that there is a difference, even if it is subtle between you and God, or you and the Guru – then that Teacher is enforcing duality.

The fundamental question that I am posing here is whether it is good or bad to have a Guru or an Enlightened Master (Satguru)? I will say it is better to have one, grab the Message and FLY with it.

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Remembrance – the key to being who You really are.

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Some of us learn to meditate, we have done it for many years but there always comes a point when we feel that something is blocking any further progress. The thing with meditation, apart from its scientific and medicinal value, it is a spiritual practice that is about reaching a state beyond the body and mind.

I have always used the image of my Guru – Nirankari Baba Hardev Singh ji when I begin the remembrance of the Formless Truth. Remembrance is the next stage after meditation. Meditation clears the mind, remembrance goes beyond the mind. Meditation takes you to the boundless, formless state whilst remembrance allows you to become the boundless, formless state. Remembrance is simply knowing who you are and being who you are. When we seek to know our true nature that is meditation, when we seek and become that becomes remembrance.

The power of remembrance is moving beyond words and entering silence. When you know you are focussing on the Formless, you recognise you are in This and you are blessed. This is the blissful state that is only felt with remembrance. When you become that very thing that is always stable and still – when you remember that this is your nature then stability and stillness is your state whilst in movement.

Meditation comes in waves and you reach peaks and valleys. However, with remembrance you are able to be in this one state of rising above, you are the witness and observer. You are neither moved by pleasure or pain, happiness or sadness, differences of forms, by the nature of thought, by action or inaction.

What I am saying here is not about comparing. If you think this is comparing then it is ego. Many compare the difference and then drop one of them. If you want to enter the state of remembrance, meditation surely does help and can help you get to focus quicker. Use meditation to help you if remembrance is proving to be difficult. Whilst meditation needs to move to remembrance eventually as this is the next stage.

I still sit with my back straight, tilt my head back a little and allow my eyes to focus on the third eye area, sit cross-legged with my palm facing upwards whilst my forearm rests on my knees and this is something I learned during my meditation days. I carry this forward because it reminds me of the sacred space I am about to enter completely. Then I begin to enter the state of remembrance and lose all essence of myself and enter this formless state and be in complete being.

Remembrance is being both in movement – sitting, sleeping, eating, waking, walking, talking etc and at the same state be in the same state of the formless – still, free, boundless, love, compassion, blissful etc. This is the tricky aspect of remembrance. You have to live normally and do all the normal things but be still and blissful like a Sage, a Buddha or your Guru. This is the essence of spirituality that not many can grasp or understand. They cannot balance this because they have not become the formless state. They fear it because somewhere they have fear for something. If you want to enter the Formless and be the Formless then you have to be as mighty as a lion, fearless and determined to be completely free.

In this state of balanced remembrance, you will be able to fully function in your daily activities and be in bliss at the same time. This has to be the goal for anyone seeking enlightenment. There is no two ways about it. This whole process is made easier with the grace of a Master, a Buddha, a Sage. I was lucky enough to have a Master, who gave His kind grace and showed me how to meditate and be in remembrance of His true nature. The Spiritual Master is a mirror and reflects Your true nature and this is the beauty. Unless, we clear our vision so we can see this true reality, we will be stuck in just praising the Master but doing nothing about it. We have to be as the Master wants us to be. The disciple has to end the relationship between the Master and Disciple because their relationship has to go beyond all titles and labels into a state of unconditional love. This has to be the aspiration of the disciple.

The Grace of the Master with practice on remembrance makes the whole process towards enlightenment easier and we need to learn to be this Formless at all times. Settling for anything less isn’t good enough. Go beyond everything so you can be Everything.

Be in remembrance – when you know you are focussing on the Formless, you can observe and witness the Formless and converse with it. Then you recognise you are in this Formless and are protected by this Formless. Finally you are blessed because you are one with this Formless – the bliss and ecstasy you are witnessing and have become is the biggest blessing. And in this process, you may see your Master and seeing the Beloved Master is just another sign that the blessing has begun. And it surely has for me!

Try out being in remembrance and feel and become the presence of That which you seek.

Thank you for reading. Please like, share and comment.

His blessings
Rahul

Enlightenment – Time is Now

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Postponement
The whole journey of being enlightened is something that we like to postpone. Let us get a good job first, let the children grow up, let me retire and then I can look at enlightenment. However, if we look at what the Sages said, the message is simple and that is that only this moment matters. Who knows when our life will end?

Why should I strive for enlightenment?
The need for enlightenment is a personal step one should take. It is up to me, up to you if you want to reach the highest state of being a human. Enlightenment has always been the next step for evolution. If we are to evolve then enlightenment is said to be the answer. It may be that we are cynical and we can say that it is all words but not a reality, however, the question is have we even attempted to go towards enlightenment before we just sweep it under the carpet? Have we even taken a single step towards knowing the Truth? The choice is ours to test it and experiment with it to reach a result and conclusion.

Enlightenment is exciting
The one single factor that makes enlightenment exciting and worth pursuing are that you get to see the whole world, the whole universe as One. In a world where people want to divide us in the name of religion, nationality, colour of our skin, our caste or class within society, the hierarchy in the workplace etc. isn’t it better to strive and see everyone and everything with the same non-discriminatory approach? It makes perfect sense to my mind. The mind that has itself created all these concepts, ideas and divisions would want to end its current paradigm for a vast , indefinable and formless paradigm. When labels were meant for recognition, we have instead taken a darker turn and it has taken the form of definitions . Once we have started to define them and keep them in a box then that is all we can think of – the box. It is like a frog in a well, the little he sees of the sky is what he perceives to be the whole universe. Until the water rises to the top and he is able to leave the well can he discover that there are infinite life-forms and therefore his vision is expanded. This is the true aim of having enlightened-thinking.

Fragility of life and time
Life is fragile and it can escape from our hands just like we hold sand in our hands, we watch it slide through with great ease. Life will leave this body with great ease but what remains is our soul. Some may believe or not believe in a soul and again it is just another word to recognise that awareness that has been the same throughout our life, that has watched us grow up yet has remained untouched by all the changes. I call that witness the soul. It is a subtle energy and it is part of the greater formless expanse. Once we know our soul and we realise we are not just this body and mind then we attain a unity with this Formless Energy. We only have this moment to realise it. No doctor will guarantee that you will live tomorrow. Nobody can say this for certain so it is best that the most important task as the Sages say must be done now. Once, we have attained this oneness with God or the Formless then we see the whole universe as our own.

Going beyond Darkness and Light
Enlightenment is all about leaving the darkness and entering into the Light. This does not mean that darkness will not exist. It will and that will be the battle between your ego and realisation. If we are in darkness then the Light will try to enter into our lives in many ways. One way and this is the quicker way is to find someone who is enlightened and receive wisdom or True Knowledge from this person. It is said in many scriptures that by staying in the company of those in the Truth is the quickest way to realise God and be enlightened. You see there is no difference between the darkness and the Light. The only reason we see a difference is because we are not united with either of them. When we are in darkness, we need the Light. When we are in the Light, we want to be in darkness as it looks an easier way to live. Such is our nature towards ignorance. However, once someone has become enlightened they see no difference between the Light and Darkness. They rise above and live a life beyond all descriptions. That is the nature of God – unaffected and unmarked and enlightenment can give us that way of life.

Enlightenment is now!
The journey is ours to take and all I can say is that for me – enlightenment is my number one goal or target. It is the purpose of my life and this is because my Guru (Spiritual Teacher) has given me a gift in which enlightenment can happen in this moment itself. All it requires is the audacity to think beyond my ego. Some say that you need many lives in order to be awakened or to know God but who knows if this is the very life in order for you to achieve it. If we are to take full advantage of being a human being, to reach the highest potential then enlightenment is the only way! Enlightenment is a happening in the now.

Taking Responsibility of Yourself

keep-calm-and-take-the-responsibilitySometimes I sit alone, this can be when I am in a crowded place too with people I know and I am conversing with them. Imagine that?! Feeling alone is the best feeling ever. When you see yourself disconnected from everything yet so connected that even nuances and subtleties are observed.

Sometimes sitting down alone, actually alone with just me is the greatest form of liberation. Why? I don’t like giving attention to those things that do not need it. I am not over-sensitive to the way people react to me aslong as I remember that it is not ‘me’ who they are speaking to but simply a projection of their own brilliant imagination. This all changes when you see Reality as it is, it becomes second nature to know that the projection is hiding the real face. This is what Truth brings to you. It gives you Reality. It gives you what feels and is experienced as Real.

Sensitivity is a must but not at the expense of your own emotions or taking offence to tiny matters. Being sensitive to life is very different to being sensitive to the whole drama that we seem to believe is life. Being sensitive to life means that you are in totality with it, you enjoy every bit of life. Every information is decoded into the Reality that is to be seen and you feel that connection to the One that created it all. However, being sensitive to drama simply means that a situation occurs and you make it a massive deal. Instead of trying to understand, you fall straight into the emotional turbulence and you are rocking to and fro creating havoc not only in your mind but definitely in others.

If you realised that you are responsible for how you feel. If you can accept that everything you feel is because of you then you will enforce a transformation. But who is willing to take this responsibility? Who really wants to take the blame for the idiocy and stupidity? It has to be a stroke of madness added with a sprinkle of genius to say ‘I am responsible for how I feel and for what thoughts I allow to run wild in my mind.’ When you accept this then transformation is waiting for you. Not mere change. Change is temporary and transformation is permanent. If you want the solution to be everlasting then choose transformation. But if you love putting unnecessary drama in your life and in the life of others then choose change because that way your idiocy and stupidity can be hidden very well.

We all have a choice and I must say that when I took responsibility for what I felt – solutions appeared without me having to do any background work. It is easier to accept that one was wrong. It is not a moment to feel guilty. Again, feeling guilty is just another way of attention seeking! Move on. Once you accept that you are in charge then that will be the last time you will ever recognise ‘you’ as the personality. You will become something larger than life and that is really what life is all about.

His Love and Blessings

Rahul

Past

shadows-of-past-bwEveryday can feel like a test. Anything you do, you may find peace in it and then suddenly something has to disturb it. Or a situation occurs and you question whether it is to throw you two steps back or brings things forward.

Recently, I have found that I am being tested a lot. You feel that you are about to enter a comfortable few moments of your life and things seem to be working your way and then a blast from the past arrives and it weaves it’s sacred way into your present. You realise that this situation has arisen because there is a lesson to be learned but what is the lesson? What am I suppose to do? What is the best thing to do?

Inner turmoil appears and disappears, appears and disappears and finally you come to a nice sanctuary – your inner Self. Away from the hustle bustle of thought, the unnecessary chat, the falsifying expressions of emotion and feelings and the sanctuary feels like the best place to be…until it chucks you out.

You know that the best thing that happened to you was in the past and now that it makes your way into the present, you are a little confused. I say ‘you’ but I mean ‘I’! Here is my reflection and therefore I continue. You feel that the best thing wants you, it desires you abut there is a problem! The future is knocking and the present moment will not let it in. The future is shouting and expressing so much to lure you into giving up so that the present can feature the future. But neither the past nor future is real but only your present. Now, is your present worthy to keep the past or is it worthy to continue into the future.

Very rarely but it happens, you are chatting to someone whom you care about deeply, you feel high like as if you have taken a drug whenever you speak to this person. And although this person doesn’t admit it, they feel high after speaking to you. It’s amazing, it’s everything you want but whatever makes you high will result either in a crash landing or a safe landing.

Crash!

The landing is always rough and uncontrollable. The future that looked stable has a new dimension added into it. The past wants a piece of it. And me, the present wants the past. No matter how many times it has let me down, disappointed me, distracted me, disturbed me, I find an incredible urge, desire, need to allow this past take charge of my present.

I am being really cryptic at the moment, using different styles because this is what happens when you become more intune with yourself. Nothing is ever linear. Nothing can occur in successive linear movement, life is full of waves, it travels in waves and it is best to surf on the tide!

People want answers and you can’t give any. Is there an answer? Do I need to give an answer? I don’t know. Do I need answers? Definitely. Maybe it is time to take a step back and see what I want. I need to take some time for myself and allow the limitations of my mind explore the vastness of what is occurring. Let life flow with absolute ease and beauty. Maybe the past can build in the present to create a wonderful future.

His love and blessings,
Rahul

Radical Change through Compassion

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We need radical change and it is needed NOW.

I have spoken to many people, introspected and dived deep into my own thoughts and the processes behind it and the whole machinery outright rejects the verdict that the nation has given in giving the Conservatives an overall majority vote.

Every morning, I wake up with a sense of deep sadness that millions are in or about to face suffering. I feel as if I am young Siddharta, who later became the Buddha, in the sense of feeling the deepest core of your being watching the suffering, feeling that suffering and then taken to plight to discover compassion.

I have some very close friends and we were discussing the difference between empathy and compassion. In a very quick analysis, one would assume they are about the same, however the deeper you enter compassion, the bigger the difference is, even if it is a subtle one. Empathy is when you can understand the pain the other person feels. You do not experience it but you have the intention to help. The main aspects of empathy are understanding and intention. Compassion is when you feel the pain the other person feels. You experience it deeply and your intention turns into action to find the remedy. The main aspects of compassion are deep feeling and action. Now, I may never understand what it is like to go to a food bank, however I feel the pain if someone had to go. To look at themselves in the mirror or at their loved ones without any sense of hope but a deep acceptance to carry on, I understand the pain, I feel the pain, I can actually experience the pain and damn, I need to do something about this.

When I say doing something about it, it isn’t in the pseudo sense of ‘I am going to achieve success, get a job, get a wife, buy a house, have kids’ type of delusional fantasy. I will be protesting against the system that has created these walls, these parameters that mean success. Why should success be individual? Why does it have to always depend on me or the idea of ‘me’? What about working as a collective, so the collective aspire together and achieve success they can share.

It is hilarious when I think of the cycle of life and I wonder if I will be the same. When we are given values from our parents, we are told to share and do things together because together we are happy as our own happiness radiates to everyone. Later on, as we get older, the story changes and it is all about my grades, my university has to be better than my siblings and competition breeds the individual and sharing becomes a distant dream. Being in the community will be a waste of time. Even concentrating on the true sense of the individual like meditation will be seen as time that could be used for studying or profit-making. Then we have kids and we instil the same values as our parents did to us. Finally, we come face to face with the hypocrisy.

Damn, the flashbacks begin. What happened to us? When did we become so distant from others and our own values? When do we turn back on the idealistic world we have created around wealth and come back to a reality of sharing with others, having that sense of community and living moment to moment? When do we transform into that child again? People tell me that if we all became children again there would be chaos. My reply is looking at the poverty in the world, the all-encompassing suffering, the attack on the vulnerable and those who need our love the most, can you tell me this isn’t chaos? The only reason it exists is because we think we are ‘mature adults’. The fact is we remained adolescents, growing with the enticing nature of competition and individuality, only that when we grow older, we have a few lines and wrinkles to state we are adults.

Today, the politics that I believe we should aim for is a holistic one. Not one just based on economics but one based on happiness. Without happiness, even wealth becomes a poison. We have to understand that we have to close the gap between the rich and poor, we have to get rid of food banks and source our food locally, we have to stop the privatisation of our health service and make it accessible and free to all, we have to embrace the elements we have to create renewable energy. The time to make the change is now. Life will always be awesome, whatever the situation but that doesn’t mean we can’t evolve the awesomeness to new heights. We can do this, if we are all together.

Join me on the 20th June, outside the Bank of England and let’s begin the revolution of happiness!

His love and blessings,
Rahul

Devotion – An Underrated Practice.

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The intense longing for the Truth, the strongest desire for the perception of Reality, the heartbreaking moments of losing everything and everyone even your own self for the sake of enlightenment is the beauty of devotion. Dancing like there is nobody watching, dancing by yourself without the need of music because the sound of the universe vibrates around you. Singing like there is nobody listening, singing by yourself without the need of the audience because the only spectator is the Formless One. Speaking like there is nobody listening, speaking with yourself without the need of appreciation, speaking just because you are sharing your heartfelt experiences with the Divinity that is within you, that surrounds you and that permeates within every aspect of creation and yet at the same time is beyond creation.

It is a shame that the western audience for Hinduism, specifically for Advaita Vedanta or nonduality or even neo-advaita is shunning devotion because they feel the intellect can reach the highest state of knowledge. Frankly, it cannot and it never will. They praise Kabir, Shiva, Rumi and yet, the miss the fundamental practice they had and that is bhakti or devotion. They had a strong passion for the Formless and the one who revealed the Formless to them. They praised their Gurus and today, we have become sceptics, albeit not for the wrong reasons, we have not opened our hearts to the Guru.

Self-realisation or God-realisation is impossible without the grace of the Guru. The disciple feels that the Guru is absolutely needed and the Guru will feel equally as dedicated and passionate towards his disciple. I know for a fact that the Satguru or True Teacher is out there, literally in love with his devotees and sacrifices everything he has for them. Devotion is impossible without a Guru.

Here is a poem by Rumi:

Once again my beloved sought me and found
Joyously in the marketplace sought me and found.
I hid myself, at my feet that drunken rose, rose from the ground
I escaped the House of Wine, sought me and found.
How wondrous that so doggedly would hound
What luck that such swindling lock sought me and found.
Who would find me if with crowds myself surround?
Knower of crowded secrets sought me and found.
I have left a bloody trail; just look around
And the one on my trail sought me and found.
Run away to what avail, deathward bound
Why hide, a thousand times sought me and found.
I pulled the thorn from my side, yet one more round
That oak towering flowerbeds sought me and found.
Like a pearl at the bottom of ocean, drowned
Pearl diver, with a string sought me and found.
Shams-e Tabriz with piercing eyes and no sound
In the light of insight sought me and found.

Kabir also says:

Even if the whole earth is transformed into paper,
with all the big trees made into pens,
And if the entire water in the seven oceans are transformed into writing ink,
Even then the glories of the Guru cannot be written.
So much is the greatness of the Guru.

Today, devotion needs to be celebrated and observed correctly. It is not just about passionate love and affection but it is the route to grow within spiritually. Knowledge transforms into wisdom by the act of devotion. Having the intense love to be there with the Beloved, the Formless One. Without the Formless, there is no love for even the forms around us. With Advaita Vedanta and other paths, you may negate until you reach the Formless, but to stay with the Formless, you have to learn to love the Formless unconditionally. Only then does the realisation stay with you. Only then does wonder and awe become an everyday part of your life. Only then do you become an explorer of Reality and Wisdom. This is only when the intense longing of the Formless is within us. To truly be wise, is to truly long for the Formless. The Formless is Reality. The Formless created consciousness. You can only understand the nature of consciousness, if you understand the nature of the Formless.

The Formless is shapeless, ceaseless, boundless, birthless, deathless, self-existent, colourless, endless, without a beginning, full of love, compassion, radiating with peace and harmony, celebrating the oneness of all things. The Formless can be yours but can you let go and surrender to the Formless.

Surrender is not letting go of you, it is letting go of who you think you are. When you surrender then you truly find yourself. Then you truly discover who you are and this Reality will stay with you. Surrender is only possible in duality, once you enter the nondual state then who will it be that surrenders. In the grand scheme of it, it is the Formless surrendering to the Formless. Surrender removes any aspect of the ego that can disturb the process of enlightenment. The chances of surrender become higher with keeping in the company of like-minded people, serving others selflessly and constantly remembering the Formless is within you and around you. Remembering the Formless not as a form of repetition but as a form of daily practice. Every feeling, every intention, every emotion and every thought must be done with the remembrance of the nature of the Formless.

Devotion is the key to spiritual enlightenment. It can be done instantly and it all depends on how much you really want to be enlightened by the Formless One. The path of devotion is simple and it is simple because the Formless is simple. It doesn’t need to be complicated by massive words which mean nothing. The less you want the Formless then frankly the longer it will take you to be enlightened. It is not if you become enlightened either, you already are but the ego will always make a goal or a meaning out of it. Being on the path of devotion, you have to let go of meaning, of concept and context. You simple have to be in this moment. This moment reveals the eternal. Give time to the Timeless and you will see a moment transform into eternity. Devotion adds juice to your journey. Without it, your faith, your practice will stand like a wilted tree, bored and secluded in the desert. However, devotion will be like an oasis in the desert. Not only does the oasis enjoy itself but others feel blessed by the presence of the oasis. They also drink the nectar that leads them into immortality.

The path of devotion is extremely important. I would go far to say that it is the best way to God, to the Formless, to Reality or whatever you would like to call it. You can even curse This, and if you do it out of love and passion then it will reveal itself unto you. It is not partial to words. You think God is so sad that He analyses each word. He knows you analyse it yourself and you yourself provide your own punishment. God neither punishes nor congratulates. He has left that to You!

His Love and Blessings,
Rahul N Singh