Sunday, August 28, 2016

"Live each day in reverent accord with God's laws,
and He who guides the destiny of the world — including your own destiny —
will plan your tomorrow for you according to your acts of today."

Paramahansa Yogananda


Paramahansa Yogananda
Welcome To
Richmond Meditation Circle

This group is composed of devoted members and friends of the Self-Realization Fellowship (SRF).

For more than 85 years, SRF has been dedicated to carrying on the spiritual and humanitarian work of its founder, Paramahansa Yogananda, widely revered as the father of Yoga in the West.

SRF is a worldwide religious organization with international headquarters in Los Angeles. As expressed in the Aims and Ideals formulated by Paramahansa Yogananda, the society seeks to foster a spirit of greater understanding and goodwill among the diverse peoples and religions of our global family, and to help those of all cultures and nationalities to realize and express more fully in their lives the beauty, nobility, and divinity of the human spirit.

Guidance from Ma

Compilation of talks given by Sri Daya Mata that
were originally printed in Self-Realization magazine.


Someone asked me how we can best deal with the negation and darkness that are so prevalent in the world today. I prayed very deeply about that, and my mind went back to the divine experience that I had in India thirty years ago during a pilgrimage to Mahavatar Babaji's cave.

My companions and I were spending the night in a little hut on the way to the cave. In the middle of the night, I had a superconscious vision in which I saw that the world was going to face a very difficult time, a period of great turmoil and unrest and confusion. I cried out, and the others asked me what was wrong. I didn't want to talk about the experience then; but I knew it had deep meaning, not merely for Daya Ma but for the world. In this vision there was a huge dark cloud spreading out over the universe; its ominous darkness was horrifying to see. But in the next instant, I saw the great, divinely loving, all-blissful light of God pushing back the black waves of that cloud. And I knew then that all would eventually turn out well.

We are now passing through the troubled times foretold in that experience. It is happening in every nation — wars, famine, incurable diseases, economic crises, catastrophic disasters, religious and civil strife. Worst of all, there is a growing sense of fear and helplessness in the face of advancing chaos.

Why are these afflictions upon us? Our situation is not unlike that of the ancient Egyptians, who were stricken by plagues and calamities for having defied the Divine Will, as is recorded in the scriptures. We tend to think that such occurrences happened only in biblical times, but this is not so. We have plagues today, many of them. We blindly think, "Oh, these can't be the result of our having transgressed. It's just a coincidence." It is not a coincidence.


Ask yourselves: "How far have we wandered from truth?" "Thou shalt not kill; thou shalt not commit adultery; thou shalt not steal...." These laws of truth have been expounded in the Ten Commandments, in the teachings of Christ, and, much earlier, in the Eightfold Path of Yoga — the first two steps of Patanjali's Yoga are yama and niyama, the principles of right behavior we should embrace and the principles of wrong behavior we should shun.

These are divine laws, a part of the universal absolutes, which have been set before mankind by our beloved God. He created this world in the most scientific and mathematically precise manner; every aspect of it is governed by law. He makes His laws clear to us through revelation to great souls such as Jesus and the rishis of ancient India. He put forth these laws that we might have guidelines to help us learn how to behave in order to put our lives in tune with God.

Down through the ages have come great lovers of God with their divine messages. In early times we had the principles expounded by Moses; for example, "An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth." He pointed out the inexorability of the divine law that what you sow, you must reap. Centuries later came Jesus Christ, bringing a teaching of great compassion. At that time humanity needed to learn something of forgiveness and mercy; there had been too many years of vengeance in "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth." Christ sought to balance the exacting, uncompromising emphasis on law by teaching forgiveness, sharing, divine love. His influence has continued down to the present time.

Now we have entered another era — a time, Paramahansaji has told us, when Mahavatar Babaji in communion with Jesus Christ has sent that which will enable humanity to go beyond merely hearing and talking about the teachings of Christ, or merely reading or reciting from India's great scripture, the Bhagavad Gita, for mankind is hungering for something deeper.

That "something" is direct communion with the Divine Beloved. Not one of us is outside of that Divine Awareness. We are all made in His image. Regardless of our color, our creed, our beliefs, we are all a part of Him; each one of us has within us that spark of the Divine. Scripture tells us: "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?"

What is that spirit of God within us? It is the soul, the atman; the very essence of what we are. But how many of us know ourselves as divine souls? Most people have wandered so far away from that realization that they have no remembrance of the Divine for even one minute out of the day. Their consciousness has become jaded through abuse of the senses. The sense of taste has become jaded by alcohol, greed, wrong eating habits. The eyes have become jaded by the sensuality we behold in our daily lives. The ears have become jaded by all of the evil things we hear. And tongues have become jaded because they spew foul words reflecting dark thoughts.

gold lotus rule

(To Be Continued)

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The Richmond Meditation Circle Service location is:

8401 Patterson Avenue
Suite 204
Richmond, VA 23229-6430

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Contact Dr. Raval at (804) 305-1415 if you have any questions.


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