Tag Archives: Gautama Buddha

Practicing Yoga without a Guru

As seen in the previous article on “Yogic Illness”, deliberately pushing oneself into deeper Kundalini-type experiences without a Guru can be perilous to one’s health.  An authentic Guru, if you can find one, is not a suave orator or an object of worship but someone who links their consciousness with yours during initiation (Diksha) and gradually elevates you to their level by transforming you from within.  Such a Guru can also detect and purge the energy blockages which develop in the subtle body (i.e. aura) during the transformation process.  The disciples who came in physical contact with Sri Aurobindo and the Mother were fortunate to obtain this intimate guidance.  What happens to those who are called to Yoga but remain devoid of a Guru?  The Mother once provided a sagacious description of the meandering manner in which the spiritual path unfolds for such seekers.

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The Milinda-Panha

These are some excerpts from the Milinda Panha, a Pali work dating to about the 100 B.C. The Milinda Panha is a dialogue between a Buddhist monk named Nàgasena and the Greek King Milinda(Melander), who ruled over Bactria(modern-day Afghanistan).  The king raised a number of questions on the philosophy, psychology, and ethics of Buddhism, as well contradictions present in the life of the Buddha.

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Parallels between Buddha and Jesus

Dec 30, 1896.  Swami Vivekananda was fast asleep on the ship which was taking him back to India after a whirlwind tour of Europe and America when he had a vivid dream.  An old and bearded man appeared before him, saying, “Observe well this place that I show to you. You are now in the island of Crete. This is the land in which Christianity began.”  In support of this origin of Christianity, the speaker gave two words, one of which was Therapeutae, and showed both to be derived direct from Sanskrit roots.  “The proofs are all here,” added the old man, pointing to the ground, “Dig and you will find!”.  The Swami woke, feeling that he had had no common dream, and tumbled out on deck, to take the air. As he did so, he met a ship’s officer, turning in from his watch.

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The equipoise required for Yoga

Napoleon once remarked that a great general must have equilibrium:  “The object most desirable is that a man’s judgment should be in equilibrium with his physical character or courage. This is what we may call  being well squared both by base and perpendicular. If courage be in the ascendency, a general will rashly undertake that which he can not execute; on the contrary, if his character or courage be inferior to his judgment, he will not venture to carry any measure into effect”[1].

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