Sunday, November 10, 2013

2 Thoughts On Sunday

I Finally Understand Tratakam Meditation

Yesterday I spent 8 hours meditating in a ballroom at UCLA with 500 other yogis.
White Tantric Yoga is an all day meditation thing that is in the lineage of Kundalini Yoga but a little different. I can't go all into it because it is hard to explain, but it is an awesome once/year event that I was lucky enough to find a babysitter and go to. It is said that one day of white tantric yoga will elevate and purify you the same as if you had spent 10 years meditating in a cave.

So even though 8 hours might seem like a lot, it's pretty fast to get such amazing benefits. As part of the meditation/s we did, we had to look directly into our partner's eyes the whole time and then we had to talk to them and access our progress. We did this repeatedly for hours, but they flew by. It was awesome. After about 3 hours I started to see the resurrected Lord Jesus Christ in my partner's face, and in everyone's face. This was part of my intention for the day, but wow, there is nothing like experiencing it. I finally understand tratakam meditation now. Tratakam meditation is when you take a picture of someone, a saint or your teacher and you meditate by looking into their eyes unblinkingly. In my teacher manual, there is a picture of Yogi Bhajan that you can use if you want to do this, and I have always found it very bewitching photograph. Not in a bad way thought--something deeply pure in his eyes frequently called me back to it.

But I didn't feel right about meditating for a long period of time looking at him when I am supposed to be a Christian. It felt sort of like guru worship. Well now I get it. And it's not about that at all! It is about staring into the soul and seeing. The other person is really a perfect mirror. You could use any nice person's picture that you are drawn to, I suppose, and even yourself in the mirror. Of course, it would be awesome to spend time looking in the eyes of the real resurrected Lord Jesus Christ, but if you believe his teachings, He is in us and among us.

I'm not sure I am explaining this well because I don't think one can-- it is totally experiential. So if you can get someone to do this with you, just sit and look into each other's eyes for a few minutes, while breathing deeply. If you tune in first though it will be a more meditative experience. So try it and let me know!

Me and my partner for White Tantric Yoga
About Soul Mates

Sweet Kristin emailed me a question about soul mates and wanted to know what I thought. She believes in them, yet there is this little quote from the prophet Spencer W. Kimball from the 70's/80's that is conflicting to her:
"'Soul mates' are fiction and an illusion; is certain that almost any good man and any good woman can have happiness and a successful marriage."

Here is what I think about about soul mates and that quote.

I think the best definition of soul mate I have ever heard is that a soul mate is anyone you have known at a previous place and time (pre-mortal life?). So in truth we have many soul mates, both male and female. For example, all of my book collaborators are my soul mates. One of the men I married was a soul mate. Many people have enemies that are soul mates. Just because you feel that deep soul mate connection with someone does not mean that they are your marriage partner.

Yogi Bhajan said that there are no soul mates. He said the soul has many mates: the physical body is a the soul's mate, as are the mental bodies, the etheric bodies, the prana, etc. And then, like any great master, he also contradicted himself and gave us the shabd (sound current/mantra) to call the soul mate.

At the time President Kimball made that famous statement, there was a popular cultural notion going around that souls were created and then split in half and you were only half until you found your soul's mate. Many people were making interesting choices based on this notion. I think that Yogi Bhajan was speaking to a similar crowd.

The truth is, each soul is created individual and is whole on it's own. However, we do need other people and we are all here to help each other and grow together. I personally believe that some people make covenants to find each other in this life and support each other or help each other learn a specific lesson. Some patriarchal blessing speak of this. Sometimes this is why we are guided to certain people and places. But sacred contracts can play out in many ways, not always through a romantic relationship.

I would also like to point out the "almost" in SWK's above quotation. I don't believe he was suggesting that everyone just pair up with their neighbor and if everyone is righteous it will all work out (although that is so key to everything). I think his message was really to let go of the thought that 'I married the wrong person' (rampant excuse in the 70's and 80's) and to let go of the fear of choosing the wrong one, or the need to try out everyone. I think he was also hoping to get people to dispel the idea that a soul mate would be easy to get along with and they would be everything a person wanted.

In summary: if you believe in soul mates, great. Just expand or shift your understanding/definition of them if you need to so that it does not hamper your ability to live righteously and move forward with faith. And if you are looking for and praying for a soul mate, don't just pray for a any old soul mate--pray for the most compatible soul mate in the appropriate sex, to come to you, and any other detail you wish for, and then leave it in the hands of God while you work on yourself and follow personal revelation. And if you are with someone already, just commit to the fact that they are your soul mate, and stop thinking that maybe there is something better.

Sat Nam.