When I first learnt to meditate, it was a wonderful experience. I was still studying pharmacology at that time. I used to sit down to meditate at dawn regularly. Every meditation was a unique experience and I would diligently write it down in my spiritual journal, afterwards. My parents observed my meditating sincerely, though never asked me much about it.
This continued for a while until one day I enquired if my father would like to try Heartfulness meditation. He was open to it, and so I took him to a Heartfulness Trainer who lived close by.
That day was life changing for him. All the rituals he had been practicing had not given him that kind of experience. He regretted the years of his life wasted, not having meditated. However, he was happy that he was there and practicing at least that day.
I had an important revelation then. We are born into various religious backgrounds, and our parents and family instill in us various doctrines and dogmas. As Hindus, Christians or any religion for that matter, we have our value systems, and beliefs. Our parents teach us what they think is important and of course that is what parents do. These rituals and traditional routines create a sense of mental discipline.
As a child, in our growing up years, learning and understanding things, satiates the curiosity. The wonder a child feels when he sees a top spinning, cannot be explained. It is reflected in the eyes, as you watch the child’s astonishment. Have you noticed what a child does when he is exposed to a top for the first time? He tries it on various surfaces to check if the top behaves in the same way. He observes, and learns, and makes a mental note. And finally decides and chooses the best surface to play with the top.
The same curiosity is exhibited by the child when he is introduced to various beliefs. He asks, “Why do we go to a temple?” or for that matter, a church. That innocent questioning leads him to answers. He understands religion. He understands culture, value system, and observes the rituals of his parents. This curiosity wanes when he is prevented from experimenting, when he is told not to question. The same child who experimented the top on various surfaces, now does not question, but rather accepts that the top spins best only on the floor when you discourage him from trying out things. He no longer entertains the innocent curiosity; he stifles his sense of awe and wonder. His astonishment at the world diminishes. He either becomes passive and non-enquiring, or becomes a rebel. These are both not desirable for an experience of the beyond.
An understanding of our doctrines and belief lie at the foundation of our next step — the experience of it. A profound experience changes us forever. After having endured an experience, we are never the same. It modifies us, evolves us, and after crossing over the experience, we can never go back to the state of what we were before the experience.
In the science of spirituality, can you consider the difference between a talk of God Realization and an experience of God Realization? Is it even comparable? What is the use of all the knowledge of doctrines if it cannot lead us to experiencing it? However at the same time, all of the knowledge is certainly an important foundation.
When we sit down in meditation with the supposition of the Source of Light in our Hearts, and allow ourselves to be attracted to it, and be enveloped by it, we are led to a state of reflective thought and action. The action being an experience of connecting within, which leads to an actualization of the knowledge.
A sustained and continued practice helps us reach a state of transformation. Such profound experiences are tools in our progress; they lead us to our true inner nature. The profoundness of these experiences removes various layers from our acquired personality to reveal the purity of the soul.
And as ego begins to wane, and we move towards the nothingness in the beyond, what more is left to experience or actualize?
All the best,
Please tune in to http://en.heartfulness.org/international-yoga-day/ on the International Day of Yoga, 21 June 2017 to watch the Livecast from Daaji starting from 7 AM IST on June 21st and available all day.
Originally published at medium.com