Conference held by Jaya Yogācārya on June 28th, 2019 during meditation class
In the last conference, we reflected on what makes a life successful or not.
The only person who can answer this is you and only you.
What matters is not "what the others think about it", but what "we" think about it.
However, some people believe that in order to think that their lives are successful, they need others to think so too.
They need the others’ approval in order to truly feel satisfied.
A master doesn’t need any approval in order to be.
If he has eradicated ego and worries, he will not play the role of a father or a mother with their expectations, projections, worries toward their children.
He is there to guide those who want to be guided and doesn’t impose anything.
If you follow a guide, it is because you need his help, as serenity, peace of heart, physical and mental health don’t come easily to you in your lives without his teaching.
Life has imposed your parents upon you, and as a child, you were compelled to go to school.
The orders and constraints of your parents and teachers may have provoked some resistance in you, but when you follow a guide, you do it freely. You are willing to accept the teaching.
In today’s society, more than ever, we consume, we take what interests us and leave what seems less important to us.
The consumption of spiritual knowledge is fragmented.
This is because the mind thinks that it is the master and commander of you and that it will be able to synthesize everything at a later time.
The beginning aspirant often regards certain aspects of the teaching condescendingly, even though he doesn’t yet know what is important and what is not.
Some maintain the body and poses, without seeing the necessity of working on their mental mechanisms through meditation.
Some maintain their relaxation without challenging the body and its inertia.
Some awaken subtle energies while neglecting their mental and physical weaknesses.
Some only see the metaphysics and the intellectual reasoning without opening their heart to the ritual and to the Bhakti भक्ति, or conversely...
It sometimes seems that the teaching gives you simple truths, the kind of truths that are given to children during their education.
These truths are in fact highly important and make you discover the sacred knowledge they contain.
Simple, basic pieces of advice consciously put into practice for years will in the end show how important they were. What seems to be behavioral pieces of advice can become habits and be the key to your evolution.
– Some simple advice:
"Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today".
– Some seemingly simple, but more subtle and metaphysical advice (yet based on the same principle):
"Going back from Two to ONE". See conf. "The Inner Adjustment"
Many aspects of your life can be put in order this way.
Before starting practicing, you were easily tired, alternating between dynamic and depressive periods. Now, you notice that your spiritual practice brings you a very high energy level which you know how to not waste anymore. In this pursuit of awakening, you are less swept away by the world’s stream and you understand that many aspects of your life have been, and can still be, transformed.
This is the conscious life, a life one decides upon, a life one leads deliberately in each detail.
This is the awakening of this luminous buddhi बुद्धि which enables to rise above the constraints of human mind.
Today’s society, with all its possibilities paradoxically, often blocks any aspiration to the subtle. Overstimulation of the senses, all-out experimentation, hyperactivity, overworking always boycott your small hour of meditation, your reading, your class, your workshop, in a word, your introspection work.
It is not enough to meditate one hour per day. All hours of the day must be filled with the teaching and become this purified existence where any useless action is eliminated.
Such is the Path.
You have to take off inside.
Don’t waste your life and think about Dharma धर्म. See "Knowing Who One Is".
In your life, you should put coherence and order where there is incoherence and disorder, or even anarchy.
If you are in order with the cosmos, then you will be in order inside.
This is not a moral law. This is a natural law.
Order does not mean an active attitude which constantly maintains the mind busy, it does not mean working without a break.
Self-realization certainly requires work, but right action also requires you to give yourself some rest times.
Recreation is a "re-creation" or reset of yourself.
If you want to watch a movie, do it fully, being present to yourself, in the moment, fully, with your body, your emotions, without thinking about the open files piling up on your desk.
Don’t go to the beach with your laptop!
If you want to dance, dance freely, fully, as long as you need it, without feeling guilty.
What is important is to do it consciously.
Know how to party, party like a god.
This doesn’t mean being out of control and losing your integrity. The point is to be happy and free.
Action remains action and any action is important.
There is no small or big action.
The tea ceremony in the Zen tradition is a good example thereof.
Constantly in life, you act, you open a door, you peel fruit, you drive, you talk.
In every action, you have to be there, present to yourself.
In every action, you have to commit.
This doesn’t mean caricaturing the perfect gestures or words of such or such master.
Be yourself, authentic.
If you become present to yourself in every moment, your gestures and words will naturally take on the nobility of consciousness. You will express your own nobility.
Your life requires an accomplishment from you.
Work, relationships, acquisition of goods, maintaining health but also distractions, all are involved in this accomplishment.
Your distractions are not unrelated to what you are doing here at the center.
Each and every situation of your daily life are opportunities to understand the way your mind works, with its attractions, repulsions, faults, weaknesses and strengths.
No action should be done without reflection, but once you have started this action, do it freely, and "stop thinking while acting" if you are sure to be on the right path that will take you to the goal.
Because a free and luminous buddhi will enable you to see and not to "think" anymore. This luminous buddhi sees the relativity of the world but in a non-illusory way. It enables you to access the depths of reality behind the surface.
Day-to-day activities of life enabling us to ensure our means of subsistence require right actions, right words, right acquisitions.
Upaniṣad उपनिषद् say right action leads to a purified life and purified functions, and so to right vision and liberation.
Right actions are not based on a moral order but on the quality of being present and fully aware of yourself.
We can only access the absolute through the relativity of our manifested life. Without these right actions, that is without this full presence to oneself, there cannot be a non-illusory perception of the relative world. We cannot awaken this luminous intelligence.
However, you will still make mistakes in your actions.
This is part of learning about the world.
Making mistakes is also part of the path and of the teaching.
Accept in advance that you will make mistakes again, that you will again accomplish actions that will not fully satisfy you. Questioning your habits, being vigilant, making efforts in the spiritual work, feeling that you have done your best, will bring peace to you.
It is now time for vacation, for re-creation.
Put in your suitcase a little bit of this spiritual knowledge which will enable you to dance like a god under a starry sky, without ever forgetting to remain centered on the absolute of your being.
Hari Om Tat Sat
– "Le Vedanta et l’inconscient" by Arnaud Desjardins, La Table ronde Editions
– "Contemplez ces vérités" (Ponder these Truths) by Swami Chidananda, Terre du Ciel Editions
– Adaptation and comment by Jaya Yogācārya
Translated by Stepanie BOSCO
©Centre Jaya de Yoga Vedanta, Réunion Island