“Find a quiet retreat for the practice of Yoga, sheltered from the wind, level and clean, free from rubbish, smouldering fires, and ugliness, and where the sound of waters and the beauty of the place help thought and contemplation.” ~ The Upanishads
As everything else in this world, success in spiritual practice depends on a certain requirements that need to be met, such as discipline, having a strong will-power and determination, right intention and goals, clear vision, asking for help etc.
When you start your spiritual practices, and particularly if you start a journey on the Gnostic Path, inwardly you will become more balanced and clean. Naturally then, you will want for your exterior to mirror what is inside you. In spontaneous manner we then arrange our practice room in a way that is inspiring and, by doing practices and preparations, are unconsciously charging it with higher energies that boost any spiritual practice.
The more inspired you are by the place, the more will you be aligned internally with the spiritual side of life, and will therefore apply more efforts into staying focused. In fact, the ability to concentrate in such environment becomes ‘effortless’, as if we are riding on a wave of a higher energy that is taking us towards our goal that we’ve set with the practice, be that achieving peacefulness in meditation, deeper Samadhi states, out of body experience, or anything else that we may want to achieve. Continue reading
‘The Two Trees’ is a poem written by an Irish poet William Butler Yeats. He was inspired by Celtic mythology, and has written the poem in the last part of the 19th century. I wasn’t aware of it until I heard the musical composition of the poem, made by Lorenna Mckennit, an interesting Canadian singer and composer of many songs with mystical themes.
The poem speaks about the two different trees, one which gives fruits of spiritual development, made grown by the ‘looking in ones own heart’, which ultimately gives ‘winged sandals’ to the person, as well as ‘eyes full of tender care’. The other tree is the opposite of development, or one could say, the development downwards, ‘drinking from the bitter glass’, resulting in ‘ravens of unresting thoughts’ and ones ‘eyes growing all unkind’. It is interesting that in both cases the eyes are mentioned as prove of how the person is doing spiritually. There is a saying that says how the eyes are the mirror of the soul, and this is very true, especially for those who can see deeper into the soul through the person’s eyes as a result of spiritual development. Continue reading
Not long ago I had a chance to read a book that was about an esoteric practice, as seen in the context of Tibetan Buddhism. One of the practices that was mentioned in this book is called Guru Yoga. It is a type of meditative practice that entails bringing in a high ideal and putting it in front of you. I heard about Guru Yoga term even before that, but in the context of invoking a spiritual teacher.
Being inspired by the description of the practice, I decided to do it but from the Gnostic approach and to see how it would affect me. Because the results were good, I decided to share here how the practice goes.
In Hinduism “guru” is a term that signifies “teacher”. It is most often referred to a physical teacher who is transmitting some kind of spiritual teachings. However, on a deeper level, in Hindi faith they say that any life-form can be a teacher, be it a plant, a rock, a mountain, a bird, a friend, a flowing water, a child, a stranger, or anyone else for that matter. Guru can also be some high principles of divinity, such as the three Logos – Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva. From the Gnostic perspective, a guru is also ones own Being (Higher Self), and based on this precise perspective I modified the practice that I’ve read in the abovementioned book. Continue reading
To worry is a common thing within the human being. We worry so much, almost all the time. Worry can be related to everything in life, but it tends to be strongest when it comes to things that are related to ones own survival. We constantly worry about so many things. For example, what others think of us occupy a strong place in the mind, and it is a worry directly related to pride. All of the worries have their roots in one ego (subconscious inner state, a defect) or another. Worry itself is an inner state/defect that pops up and manifest as an emotion, thought, or an impulse, and sadly often time it can consume the human being.
The best way to deal with it would be as with any other defect – observing it from the state of detachment. Once the defect is observed in that way, we gain an understanding of it, and can then eliminate it. This would be an ideal way to do it, a way also known as the First Key of the Path to Awakening. However, for those who are not yet ready for such technique, there are alternatives that could work.
Not long ago I’ve read a book by Annie Besant, a famous Theosophist. In it she says how a worry is a strong thought current, and if frequent enough, it digs for itself a channel by which it makes continuous impression on the mind of a person. She suggests that in order to counter it, a person should create a thought current and a channel of an opposite character. She says: Continue reading
An exercise of retrospection is a powerful tool. With it we gain self-knowledge, insights, and understanding about our behavior and subconscious defects or egos (things such as anger, fear, pride, lust etc.) that have manifested during the day but have gone unnoticed, and as they go unseen they are controlling our lives. As it is said, ‘Life is a series of events’. The flow of the day sets out various events that we go through, most of which bring about egos within us, regardless if we notice them or not. Sometimes we go through difficult or intense situations, a chaotic development of events where it is very hard to be in the present moment and detached from our egos. These types of events can easily pull us in and drag us along, which means that we act unconsciously. Even if the flow of events is ordinary, there are still emotions, thoughts, and/or impulses that manifest within us.
From an outburst of anger, to a subtle surging of envy, in the retrospective exercise we can see all of that and get knowledge about the egotistic state (ego) and how it controls us. This then can change our lives, simply because, in the exercise of retrospection, we are looking at the events from the perspective of the observer, rather than the participant. Continue reading