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  ahymsin newsletter, issue - 17, april 2010  
   
   
 
         
   

Lord, Give Me the Strength

There is something that happened to me in 1998 that I'd like to tell you.

It was a very tumultuous time for me.  One day I was at my wit's end.  I did not know if I could make it through the day. Before I left for work, a little bird told me to open up Swami  Rama's book, Sadhana. I opened the book, at random, to page 69, and read this passage:

While working on the removal of weaknesses, you have to be very vigilant. Ego does not want its weaknesses exposed.  The more you hide your weaknesses, the more they grow.  Remind yourself that you are on the path of inner purification and self-discovery.  It requires great courage.

And the next sentence was like a trumpet blast:

Stand firm during this internal battle, and support your Atman, even at the cost of dismantling the ego and all its retinue.

I kept that thought in my head all that day, and it gave me strength to make it through that day and many days to follow.

During the same period of time, during an even more tumultuous day, I was driving to work for a critical meeting.  Some days before, I had put an audio tape I had been given by a friend from The Meditation Center into my tape player, but I had totally forgotten about it.  My whole being was filled with worry and fear.  As I approached work, my mind grew more and more agitated until, in a kind of trance, I turned on the radio for some distraction. . . and from the car speakers came beautiful music - chanting.

I could not figure out where the chanting was coming from. What radio station would possibly play THAT? It seemed to be coming from the sky and from deep within me.

I parked the car in the parking lot and just sat there with the chanting going on, and with all my worries melting way in a wave of forgiveness, love and exhilaration.

What was the Chanting?  (See the Hymn to Shiva, below)

 . . . and we think that we're not looked after.

************************

Then, during this very same period of time, I again looked in Sadhana and found these passages on INNER STRENGTH:

 If something does not turn favorable in life, one should learn to forget and start a fresh chapter.  Strength, strength, strength is a necessity for leading a happy life, and that strength should be inner strength. Learn to be strong from within. When you learn to live on the inner strength, you emanate that inner strength, and that will help others too.

Where is the Lord?  The Lord is within you, seated deep beyond your mind and emotions.  You should say the God-centered prayer:

I am Thine and Thou art mine.  I need strength,
please give me strength.  In any situation I'm in,
Lord, give me strength.

 One day you will have so much inner strength that you will witness the Reality, the absolute Truth within, and then you will be happy.

Please know how much I admire the strength that the Board Members have shown in facing and overcoming so many of the "hard realities" (Swami Veda's term) that TMC has faced.

I feel very strongly that a new chaper is beginning and am grateful to be sharing it with you.

Namaste!

Michael

Hymn to Shiva
by Shankara

  1. mano-buddi-ahamkara-chittani naham na ca shrota-vaktre na ca ghrana-netre; na can vyoma-bhumir na tejo na vayush cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham. cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham.
  2. na ca prana-sanjo na pancanila me na va sapta-dhatur na va panca-koshah; na vak-pani-padau na copastha-payu cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham. cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham.
  3. na me dvesha-ragau, na me lobha-mohau mado naiva me naive matsarya-bhavah; na dharmo na cartho na kamo na mokshah cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham. cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham.
  4. na punyam na papam na saukhyam na duhkam na mantro na tirtham na veda na yajnah aham bhojanam naiva bhojyam na bhokta cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham. cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham.
  5. na me mrtyu-shanka na me jati-bhedah pita naiva me naiva mata na janma; na bandhur na mitram gurur naiva shishyah cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham. cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham.
  6. aham nirvikalpo nirakara-rupo vibhur vyapya sarvatra sarvendriyani; sada me samatvam na muktir na bandhah cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham. cid-ananda-rupah shivo’ham shivo’ham.
  1. I am not manas, buddhi, or chitta nor ears, mouth, nose, eyes nor sky (space), earth, light (fire), air — cit and ananda — I am Shiva, I am Shiva. cit and ananda — I am Shiva, I am Shiva.
  2. I am not called the prana, nor are the 5 winds mine. nor 7 dhatus (bone, blood etc.), nor the 5 sheaths nor speech, hands, feet, organs of generation or elimination — cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva. cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva.
  3. Attraction & aversions are not mine, nor greed & confusion nor pride, nor petty malice no dharma, no artha, no kama, no moksa — cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva. cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva.
  4. Neither virtue nor sin, no pleasure, no pain; no mantra, no pilgrimage, no Vedas, nor sacrifices I am not “food,” an object to be enjoyed, nor the enjoyer cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva. cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva.
  5. To me there is no fear of death, nor caste distinctions, no father, no mother, nor even a birth, no kinsman, no friend, no guru, no disciple — cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva. cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva.
  6. I am free of all vikalpas, without name, shape or form I, pervading all, remain master over the senses, To me: ever equinimity, no freedom and no bondage, cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva. cit and ananda, I am Shiva, I am Shiva.

 

   
       
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