Monday, November 19, 2012

THE PROCESS OF DEVELOPMENT in spirituality - Atman Nityananda

by Nityananda Atman

First of all if we want to have real progress in spirituality we have to practice with regularity and punctuality. A daily sadhana with certain practices and goals is necessary to free ourselves from the ego and abide effortlessly in our essence (consciousness).

By practice gradually we learn how to do all the practices until we can apply them effortlessly and with great effectiveness. We have to learn step by step how to concentrate, how to do japa-mantra, pranayama etc. 

One important thing to know is that the learning happens gradually by practice and repetition but the actual results of this learning do not appear gradually. They appear suddenly.  The results of our practices never appear linearly but with gaps.

The subconscious mind without a brake elaborates what we practice and learn every day. This is an unseen process impossible to know and understand. After some time we can see only the results  of this process. For example we can see after some time that we are more skilled in pranayama or in our meditative asana, concentration, etc.  Is important to know that we cannot every day recognize what our progress in meditation is. A higher meditative state will appear ‘suddenly’ after some time. Of course this state does not appear by accident but due to our own efforts. This state in the beginning can appear occasionally later more frequent and of course after some time if we continue regularly our practises we will be established in that state.

If we are very skilled in discrimination and self-observation we can realize or notice more easily the changes that happen to us due to practice.

In every thing we learn before we achieve a higher state, this state usually appears by itself occasionally and for a short time. So we can have some taste of this higher state. Gradually this higher state appears more often and finally if we continue our practice regularly we conquer this state. We can achieve this state voluntary by conscious efforts. In the beginning with some difficulty but gradually with less and less effort.

This process is the same to all kind of practices and all physical and mental skills .

The quickness of this process of learning and development depends on the maturity of the aspirant, the capacities, the qualities that has already and how diligently does daily the practices. 

Qualities such as a pure, one-pointed, discriminative and flexible mind together with steady determination, self-confidence, faith, iron will, perseverance, earnestness, and a fiery aspiration to realize the truth are necessary for real progress in spirituality. 

Moderation is the best rule to follow in our daily sadhana but it is difficult to measure what are our limits in every stage and what exactly is the amount of practice to do. 

We have to enquire always how much to do, what is better to do and how to do it. Occasionally excess is inevitable in order to find what moderation for us is.

If we want to achieve a higher spiritual state it is necessary to increase gradually our practices in quantity and quality.

If we want accelerate the process of learning it is necessary to put some capsules between the regular practices. A capsule is very intense practice for some period of time. In that period we do much more practice than we do daily. We can take a capsule for a weekend, a week or a month. It is very important also to spent some time for sadhana in places with high spiritual or sattvic vibrations, like ashrams of great spiritual masters* or in pure nature.

* I had the grace to do sadhana in the ashrams of Swami Sivananda in Rishikesh, of Haidakhan Babaji Ashram near Haldwani, of Sri Ramana Maharshi in Tiruvanamallai. The results were just wonderful.

 We must always enquire what we do and how we do it, in order to find our defects and make the necessary corrections, adjusts and changes. 

We have to be alert always and do practice without a brake until all desires, vasanas, samskaras and ego be burned in toto and the realization of our divine Self be firm and steady.

May God bless you and give you all strength and power to achieve the highest realization in this very life.

Peace love harmony