Good morning everyone. A few thoughts from today’s Master Course Lesson from Gurudeva.
“Sutra 308. Remolding the Subconscious.
“My devotees succeed by remolding subconscious magnetic forces. They purge the dross through vasana daha tantra — writing and burning past transgressions and current problems — then use positive affirmations.”
The idea is that the subconscious mind is very impressionable, very moldable by what happens. And the contents of the subconscious mind attract to us our future. In other words the subconscious mind relates to karma. So as we change the contents, the shape of the subconscious mind we change our future.
There’s a statement something like: The future is created by the impressions placed into the subconscious mind. That’s Gurudeva’s statement.
So, life as such is a mixture of positive and negative and so the impressions that have gone into our subconscious mind are a mixture of positive and negative. And unless we’ve done something to get rid of the negative impressions they’re still there, vibrating with emotional content. When we think about them they still upset us. That’s how we know something has emotional content. We think about it; if its a negative happening and then we think about it and it still upsets us in a significant way, we haven’t taken the emotional content out of the experience. So, that’s the goal of writing down — in English it’s called journaling, that idea. Vasana daha tantra: writing down the hurt feelings about the past, the different difficult experiences about the past, writing them down and burning them up. And when we do so we can take the emotion out of them. And Gurudeva says, you know: “Watch it burn and imagine it leaving the mind.”
So, it’s not that we’re going to forget the experience, it’s that we take the emotion out of it. So when we think about it it doesn’t upset us. That’s how we know we’re successful. Before doing it, when we think about that particular experience is it upsets us. Cause we’re very unpleasant. Now, after doing vasana daha tantra, we think about the experience and we don’t get upset. That means we’ve done enough vasana daha tantra on that practice.
Well, the subconscious mind has its own intelligence built into it which we can utilize or ignore. So, it works in a way, such as, when experience goes into our mind which we haven’t fully resolved and which has an emotional component to it, the subconscious will keep reminding us of that. We’ll remember that for maybe a week or so. We’ll regularly remember this experience. What’s the subconscious mind telling the conscious mind? That this is unresolved. You’re about to place an unresolved experience in the subconscious mind. Are you sure you want to do that? I thought we were trying to get rid of it. You’re about to add one more. It keeps reminding us but after a certain point it’ll stop reminding us. It’ll just suppress it. Cause, you know, it doesn’t want us bothered by too many things at once. We’ll be terribly distracted; be dangerous to drive. Thinking about all these things from past 6 years all popping up, you don’t know. So, it has a time limit and then it starts suppressing it. And then only events that have happened since then, that are unresolved, would pop up into the mind. So, its a very interesting process.
Well, when we watch that we can decide if we want to resolve it and if so write it down, burn it up. We talk to the person that’s involved if that’ll work. In some way resolve the experience and get the emotion out of it; get the frustration, the anger or the disappointment in our self out of it so that it’s just neutral.
So, that’s only have the process. “They purge the dross through vasana daha tantra — writing and burning past transgressions and current problems — then use positive affirmations.”
So, affirmations work best when the subconscious mind has been cleaned up to a certain degree. It’s not that they won’t work at all without doing that but if we go through that trouble then they work better. There’s less, what would you say, competition. More of the subconscious mind is available to help it happen in a positive way.
Well, as the expression goes: “Careful what you think about.” You know, if we think about something enough we can create it. So that’s the idea of affirmations it can create something in the future of a positive nature.
We went to Texas, Northern Texas. It’s a very generous state. It gave us an unsolicited gift called a cold. [laughs] It was very cold there, where we were was a low of 18 and high of, what was it? 24 or 32, one of the two. I think, I guess it was 32. 18 low, 32 high. Cold for Hawaiians.
When it comes to affirmation you’ll recall that there’s three keys. One word, Keys: Think, feel, know. Think, feel, know, right? Know, think and feel. Nope, that’s not quite it. Visualize, there we go. Visualize, feel and think. Those are the three keys. What’s a sample of that? I’m going to get a high paying job as salesman. Say we’re in sales and we’re out of work. So, we’re trying to use affirmation to get a job. I’m going to get a high paying job as a salesman. So, when we start repeating that affirmation in morning and nighttime for a few minutes each.
So “think” means we have to keep the mind on the meaning. We can’t let the mind think about: What am I going to have for breakfast while we’re doing it. That wouldn’t be thinking. So, thinking is keeping the mind concentrated on the meaning of the affirmation. And it’s challenging; if you’ve been repeating it for a few months you tend to drift off. The habit mind. So, the longer you’ve been repeating it the more you have to be careful of actually be thinking about the meaning.
And then visualize, you choose a visualization. Whatever kind of object you’re selling you can see yourself going into people’s offices and selling them successfully. That would be a visualization. But we need to involve the visual capacity of the mind as well as the thinking capacity of the mind. It’s two different aspects of the mind need to be involved.
And then the third one is to feel. We need to feel, right now, how it will feel in the future to have a high paying job as a salesman. To feel that right now, experience that feeling. And that’s the part that sometimes gets left out. We do the other two but we don’t feel as it would feel to have achieved that. So when we do all three, think about the meaning, have a specific visualization in mind and feel how it will feel to obtain that. Then affirmation will manifest more readily, more successfully when we involve all of that. That’s what Gurudeva explains in that small booklet on affirmation as well as in the, the a chapter on it in, is it Merging With Siva I think, has a chapter on it? So that’s where that information is if any of you are interested in pursuing affirmation more and it’s a wonderful practice. And it’s right there. The subconscious is, is creating our future anyway. But why not, you know, take a more active part in what it’s doing? Be more proactive in, in which future you’re creating for yourself by cleaning up the past and affirming what we want for the future. We actually change what’s happens to us.
OK. Lets see here. This is on Monistic Theism. Freedom and Responsibility.
“The human being has a dual and non-dual component.” (We’ll come back and explain that if it doesn’t get adequately explained because that is important to understand.) “He has belief. He has faith. He has love. But all of these fine qualities can be taken away through discouragement. His faith is faith in the unseen. His belief is belief in things that are not always intellectually rational. His love is love of all that is tender and beautiful. All of these fine qualities and many more work together in lifting up consciousness toward the ultimate reality of timelessness, causelessness and spacelessness. There is not one human being on the planet who will not eventually understand the monistic theist approach. This is because it is an intrinsic part of the human psyche. Everyone is a monistic theist in one way or another.
“Historically, there have always been monists on one side and theists on the other. The one path that is made up of these two camps is monistic theism. It encompasses both. And, yes, it is the solution to many of the problems people face today. Saiva Siddhanta is the final conclusion of the adepts, and it includes the true precepts of Vedanta. There can only be one final conclusion, and that is monistic theism. ”
OK, it looks like we better explain the human being has a dual and non-dual component. It’s not really explained.
Well, many traditions have one or the other. A monistic or a theistic view of that. So, the monist sees the identity of the soul in God. They’re absolutely the same. There’s no difference. Siva is Siva; the soul is God. Theist sees the personal aspect of God and sees a separation. Whereas the monist is looking, be not looking at the personal aspect of God. Looking at God as consciousness or looking at God as consciousness and the transcendent reality.
So the idea is that our tradition combines both. It’s very simply said in the morning when you look at the monastic schedule. What do we do? Well first we have a half an hour Siva Puja, that’s our theism. Then we go into the Guru Peedam and have an hour meditation. That’s our monism. In our theism God is separate from us. We’re expressing our love and devotion to God in homa and in puja; that’s theism. In our monism we’re claiming our identity with God. And there’s no personal aspect of God involved. We’re looking at God as secular not in Parasiva. We’re looking at God as the essence of the soul.
So we have both approaches: A monistic pursued by meditation and a theistic pursued by worship. And Gurudeva’s point here — we don’t have time to read it all — is that, that’s a pretty good combination. And because the monistic approach works better if you’ve perfected your theism first.
In other words, for example, you take a story: I was talking to a bharata natyam teacher teacher from the U.S.A and she was telling me about her students and somehow we got into the idea of devotion. And she said there’s two emotions — rasas — that her students have trouble with. One is devotion and the other is humility. They can do all the other emotions. Dance courses. But they have trouble expressing humility and trouble expressing devotion. So, why is that? Well, they grew up in America. They didn’t grow up in India. It’s not a, America’s not a country where you necessarily learn humility and devotion. But these are qualities you need to go deeply into one’s self spiritually. So that’s why the theism is particularly useful in a place like America where, through the practice of theism, devotion and humility are cultivated and increased. Otherwise, when you sit down to meditate on the identity of the soul and God you end up in the intellect. Can’t get beyond the intellect. And so it’s not a deep practice.
As Gurudeva says:
“The problem is that Vedanta as taught today gives privilege without the disciplines, creating jnanis of intellect rather than realization.”
Though even, I was talking to Swami Ishwarananda in Chinmaya Mission in Los Angeles, first Chinmaya mission swami I’d talked to. I’d been to Chinmaya missions and given talks before, never visited one with a swami present. So we were talking about what they were teaching and he, and I was saying: “Teaching jnana yoga?”
“Yes.” (Which is monism.)
And then his assistant, family person, explained they had this problem. New problem coming up regularly but a lot of the college age students were very argumentative and kind of had this strong intellectual pride. So, they couldn’t get beyond the intellect. They were just kind of approaching jnana Yoga and Vedanta as an intellectual study. Though showed the problem. And there’s a number of schools of Vedanta that try and avoid that by performing karma yoga and bhakti yoga first. Bhakti yoga and karma yoga are necessary foundation in some schools of Vedanta before you try and become a monist. So, that’s Saiva Siddhanta, that’s our theism really. We’re practicing our bhakti yoga in our, in the temple and our karma yoga as service in the temple and other places before we expect a lot out of our meditation. And then, eventually, our bhakti yoga and karma yoga in the temple our theism becomes strong and that’s a nice foundation for meditation or for monism.
Well that’s the idea. Monistic Theism. Both paths. The temple and meditation as part of a one tradition.
Thank you very much.
[End of transcript.]