Tuesday, April 25, 2017

I go to India to meet God

For the last 8 years, I book a flight to India every single year with the aim to come face to face with God.

Year after year without fail, I meet God in silence.

To bottle my experience, I would write down my thoughts.  This year, I found myself writing to God.  

I call God, Baba- in the same way that I don’t call my father mister or by his first name.  The term God seems so unreachable.  

Actually, I’ve been writing to Baba even before I studied meditation.  A priest told me that in Israel they call God, Abba which means father.  I made my own term of endearment and call The Divine, Baba- only to find out that those who study raja yoga call God in the same manner (Baba means father in Hindi).

I’m sharing with you my letters to Baba during my 16 days in India and 1 day back in Manila.

P.S.  Please click the video below each post so you can try meditation or raja yoga.  

meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 1: Arrival

image from innerpeaceinnerpower.org

                                                                         April 3, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          I just arrived here in Madhuban (how we fondly call the university for meditation on Mount Abu, India) today.  I’ve converse with Sister Patrice, a nurse from London on the car drive up Mount Abu.  I met my roommates- Rup from Holland, Claire from Guadeloupe (Carribean), Christine from Portugal, Priti from Australia and Neelam from Canada. I also went to Pandav Bhawan to bring things for Sister Sashi of Madhuban.  I had a chance to sit down by my favorite meditation spot, The Tower of Peace. By night time, I met Bro. William from the Philippines by the internet area.  I met so many people from different parts of the globe just on my first day here.

           What stood out for me was Brother William’s realization during his retreat in Delhi.  He felt that You told him, “Don’t be afraid.  I will take care of everything. Simply make yourself available to me.”

           This is exactly the message I need to hear right now.  In this visit, I feel that all I need to do is to build up my inner strength.



meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 2: I’m a jerk

image from redandbluecrayons.deviantart.com

                                                                    April 4, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          Today, I realized how controlling I am.  I’d been feeling tired of late.  I thought it’s because the body’s been through a long journey from the Philippines to here (18 hours including the 5 hour transit in Singapore).  As I sat in meditation today, I felt that not only are my eyes heavy but my heart’s heavy too because of the many expectations it holds:

  * I want this person to submit the video I asked for right now
  * I want another person to reply to my message
  * I want to move accommodations 
  * I want to do intense yoga for 8 hours daily
  * I want to know how the program I left back home went
  * I want to stop doing all my mundane responsibilities while               I’m here in Madhuban (but I need to check on a                               project for at least 1-2 hours daily)

          I want so many things.  I expect people to do what I asked for.  I want things to happen in the way I want it to happen.  

          I’ve been such a jerk- too rigid, too controlling.

          I took the basket of burden and placed it on top of my head and now I wonder why I feel so tired.  Sometimes, I could be too responsible to a fault.

          I forgot that I’m only the paintbrush on the Artist’s hand.  It is not my call- it’s Yours.  My only responsibility is to be available.

         I try to do too much.  I push people & projects.  I stress myself and others.  Now, that I look back at all the things I want to control, I see that I will not die if I don’t get it.  Really, it won’t be the end of me.

         I forgot to flow.  I forgot to adjust- that’s why I’m heavy.   

         I feel that I need to let go and allow You to take over.  You’re the boss and I will simply make sure that my stage is good.

         That’s the only thing I should be concerned about.  Everything else is on You now.



meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 3: Dear Mind

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                                                                April 5, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          Today, I realized that my mind likes to wander off to the future- especially during meditation.  Tonight let’s write a letter to my mind.


Dearest Mind,

          I love you!  You are a very important faculty.  You help me get things done!  Today, I realized that you don’t enjoy the present moment as much as you can.  You like to daydream and plan ahead into the future.  You enjoy coming up with scenarios and playing what-could-have-been.  

          You know, that’s not going to help us at all.  If you notice, we usually make mistakes when you wander off.  Also, we don’t get to embrace the moment.

           Please know that the future is going to be ok as long as we fully live in the present.  From now on, you have only 1 task and that is to take in all that you can in the now.

           Let’s try to follow what Victoria Moran said, 

“In this moment, there is plenty of time. In this moment, you are precisely as you should be. In this moment, there is infinite possibility.”

           This is going to be a beautiful experience, you’ll see.

                                                                                The Soul

meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 4: Discipline

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                                                                 April 6, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          Today is all about discipline. For one, I’m already in bed and journalling at 9:06pm.  

          Also, I followed through on what I said I’ll do today:

     *  eat more fruits
     *  be on time for dawn meditation
     *  come for meditation before the early morning class
     *  go to Pandav Bhawan (This is the original 
         campus & has the most powerful vibration 
         of the 3 campuses of Brahma Kumaris in Mount                                Abu) in the morning for more meditation 
     *  go to Pandav Bhawan again in the afternoon
         (a 15 minute bus ride from where I’m currently                                  staying) for more yoga
     *  give the letters of the meditation students in the                               Philippines 
     *  get my laundry from the laundry department
     *  work for 2 hours

          I felt that I was able to finished all my tasks efficiently because I focused on my yoga and the yoga gave me the power I needed to accomplish everything.

          Today, I also learned the technique on how to make You my world- I have to experience all relationships with You so I can cut all the strings which ties me to this world.  I particularly worked on making You my Purifier.  Today in meditation, I felt the hurt and burden of sorrow from many births in my heart and you helped me burn a heavy load.  However, there are still traces and I still need to stay in the fire of yoga more and more.


meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 5: Balance

image by Shaik Azharuddin

                                                                 April 7, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          I’ve been pushing myself to finish all work-related things today. This rushing rushing rushing strains my neck and my head though.

         So, I’m learning to come to terms with my fate at the moment. I just have to make sure that I go to Pandav Bhawan in the morning and afternoon for my yoga bhatti (intense yoga).

         I love staying by the Tower of Peace.  I can sit there for hours.  It takes a while to connect though because my mind pulls me to work or plans.

         “Mind loves to go to the past, future or fantasies.”, relates Nadhikala, a classmate from Sri Lanka.

          It's nice that I get to talk to her today.  This 28 year old yogi is so wise. “Don’t push yourself if you can’t wake up at at 2am for dawn meditation, 4am is fine.”, she advises.

          She hands me another practical advice, “I feel that I can have good yoga when I’m fully rested.”

          I give it a try it today and it works like magic.  I go for an afternoon nap and I am very alert during dusk meditation.

          Today is all about balance…
               *  of yoga and connecting to my family back home                          *  of yoga and work
               *  of gentleness and tough love on myself
               *  of completing tasks and letting go 
               *  of asserting myself and being flexible



meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 6: Lightness

image from www.hotel-r.net

                                                                     April 8, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          I dumped the laptop (and work) today.  What stood out for me today was how few my thoughts have become and how I can balance silence and connecting with others.  It was easier to meditate too as my head and my heart’s lighter.



meditation from Release Your Wings 

Day 7: I feel hurt

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                                                                          April 9, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          I received news that the main speaker for the big mela (meeting) tomorrow is not coming.  At first I told myself, “ I needed this. There’s a message here that’s why this is happening to me again."  It took me a while to connect in yoga though.  I forgot to check in how I feel.  I felt hurt.  There was a tinge in my heart when the news was confirmed.  I took it personally.  “Did I do something wrong?  Was I not prepared for the meeting”, I asked myself.  

         On the other hand, everyone I talked to seemed unfazed. Claire from the Carribean in her French accent said, “Sister drama is perfect.  Everything is perfect.” She was waving both her hands up while talking as though dismissing the severity of the situation.  Rup, a 60 year old yogi from Holland tried to comfort me by saying, “You know a yogi remains in equanimity in happy or sad situation”.  Brother Ojie from the Philippines said, “This is the sign of the times.  We really have to be ready no matter what.”

          I guess I wasn’t ready.  I was too busy finishing my affairs even while in Madhuban.  I was so caught with work back home, my preparation for this trip fell short.

         I think there lies the sadness- in the guilt that I may have caused it.  I want to make up.



meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 8: Everything is good

image from weneedfun.com

                                                                     April 10, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          I’m ok now.  The tinge of hurt which I felt yesterday is now gone.  I saw how full Shantivan (the biggest campus by the foot of Mount Abu) is today, how calm the crowd of 23,000 is about the sudden change in the program and the celebratory vibe right after the meeting. I’m convinced that this is the crowd I want to be part of.

          Dadi Janki the head of the organization only has good things to say:

“Wonderful drama! The knowledge of drama makes us so peaceful because all days are not alike.  Today is also wonderful… Baba has taught us such a great lesson. ”May you always be happy and may you continue to move forward.”.



meditation by Release Your Wings 

Day 9: Allowing

image from deviantart.net

                                                                April 11, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          Today is about allowing things to happen.  

          I didn’t push as much but I made the necessary effort.  I learned to cut ties which bind, too. 

          I am also finishing lokik (worldly) responsibilities to prepare for my much needed silence.

          I feel lighter now.  I am learning that, that’s when things happen.  



meditation from Release Your Wings 

Day 10: Contentment

image from thoughtsonlifeandlove.com

                                                                    April 12, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          Today, I have decided to be content wherever I am.  In fact, I don’t feel like moving anymore ( I've been asking to be billeted in Pandav Bhawan every other day.  I know, I'm not yet a yogi cause I still have desires. Tsk. Tsk. ).  

          After dinner, Sister Kastouri from accommodations looked for me in the dining hall and said that I can transfer tomorrow.  Yay!

          Thank you, Baba.  Today, I learned that I have to renounce first to get what I want.

                                                                       Love,                                                                                                   Karen

meditation from Release Your Wings 

Day 11: Surrender

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                                                            April 13, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          Today, in meditation class this statement hit me- “Surrender everything you have.”  I feel that it is easy to surrender the body and wealth.  My mind is quite mischievous and stubborn.  It keeps on planning for the future and thinking of unimportant things.  Baba, can you please help me tame the mind.

          I have moved to Pandav Bhawan today.  I am increasing my hours in yoga.  I feel that I really need to clean the heart and the soul of deep seated negative sanskars (patterns) and hurts from the past.


meditation by Release Your Wings

Day 12: How not to sleep while in yoga

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                                                          April 14, 2017

Dearest Baba,

     I was able to do the following today:

        *  wake up at 2:45am
        *  sit down for yoga from 3am to 4:45am
        *  come for meditation before the early morning class
        *  sit down for yoga in the afternoon from 6-8pm
        *  be in karma yoga (yoga while in action) the rest of the time

     So far, I’m happy with my effort but there are still areas I want to improve on.


P.S.  I figured out how not to sleep during yoga- think of benefitting the world while I serve the self.

P.P.S. I felt that drama is moving faster and faster.  Recognizing time, I must speed along and transform myself.

meditation from Release Your Wings

Day 13: Oh happy day!

image from bookyogaretreats.com

                                                            April 15, 2017  

Dearest Baba,

          I’m finally happy with my chart today!  It’s also easier to connect during yoga now- less than 5 minutes! And, I can stay connected for hours without interruption.  It took a long while to get here though- 13 days to be exact.  It took me more than an hour to connect before and I had to wrestle with the mind.  Staying here in the Pandav Bhawan helped me a lot.  Letting go of the mundane gave me a big boost too. Thank you!


meditation from Release Your Wings

Day 14: Unmasking a monster

image from www.buzzfeed.com

                                                                       April 16, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          Today, I’ve unmasked a new monster lurking inside me- desire.

          In today’s mediation class I heard, 

“Some children know in which powers they are weak…but they do not reach the seed.  Therefore, what is the result?  They prune the branches of that weakness and thereby feel for a short time as though that weakness has finished.  However, because the seed is still there, because it receives the water of various situations, the branches of that weakness start to grow again…Finish the weakness by knowing the seed.”

          I felt that I have simplified my life to a hilt but today I realized that my carelessness, laziness, love for comfort, lack of discipline (at times) and not being economical are the branches of the seed of desire.

          I’ve been fighting my weaknesses for a long time and they kept on sprouting again and again.  Thank you for showing me the way to end this.


Day 15: Ready to Serve

                                                                April 17, 2017

Dearest Baba,

          I’m ready to go and serve.  I feel full and clean.  I am happy and content.  My mind still wanders at times but it’s easier to call it back to refocus. I still need to completely burn all the traces of desire but I feel that the seed has already died. I will continue to make consistent effort back in my service place. Thank you, Baba.  I love you!

                                                                      Love,                                                                                     Karen

video from EasyMeditation