THE KRIYA YOGA BLOG
Nurturing Your Mind, Body, and Spirit on the Path of Yoga and Self-Discovery
About a week ago, I read the next chapter from the book I've re-explored since March, "A Systematic Course in the Ancient Tantric Techniques of Yoga and Kriya." The topic's title was "The Root Cause of Tension," and the chapter offered readers an opportunity to relieve the body and mind of tension.
I can't think of a better time for this chapter to reenter my life and perhaps enter yours for the first time. As protests against injustice and racism occur worldwide in response to the death of George Floyd (and so many others), physical and emotional pain emanates from the hearts and faces of the people I view on the news. This most recent rise of global confusion, frustration, and understandable anger also seems exacerbated by the not-so-positive impacts of our global pandemic: fear, impatience, and anxiety. Not to mention the other worries that pile up as a result of global warming, climate change, and dirty politicians. It doesn't seem like such a surprise then that our world appears so tense, right? That so much in our world can result in tension in our bodies and minds?
What if I told you that by taking the time to read the 10 Codes for Mental Reprogramming as specified in our Kriya yoga book, your outlook on life would improve immediately? It's true. I promise! However, the choice is yours: you can take steps to make this world and your life a veritable heaven on earth, or you can remain as you are.
In this blog I’ve included the following gifts:
The Root Cause of Tension
The codes that Swami Satyananda Saraswati formulated are not intended to be moralistic. They are a means to an end. To reiterate, they are suggestions by which you can start to consciously alter your attitude towards life's situations. They are intended to relax you sufficiently, so that you can eventually delve into your mind through meditation practices and thereby root out the deeper negative aspects of your mental nature.
These codes are not supposed to change your lifestyle, and we don't advise you to force them on yourself at all times. Only remember them as you go about your daily routine and their presence will help you from within, from your subconsious 'attitude centres'. (61)
Codes for Mental Reprogramming
Make the effort to begin to accept other people fully. Try not to see them merely as objects to be used for your own gratification. Try to accept others as also acting in accordance with their mental conditioning. What you see in them is only an external manifestation of their mental program. In this way they are no different from you, except their program may be a little different. You are now aware of your dependence on your mental conditioning; perhaps they don’t realize it yet. If you can accept others more they in turn will start to accept you. Laugh at yourself, at your behavior and at your antics.
Accept yourself. Know that your actions are the result of your mental makeup. For this reason, don’t worry about your deficiencies and problems. Accept your limitations. But at the same time feel the need to clean the mind of its conflicts. It is our inability to accept ourselves that causes so much anguish in life.
Watch your habituated reactions to people around you and to your environment. Watch how your attachment to the external can result in so much discontentment. Try to reduce your need to find happiness in outside things. This does not mean that you should not follow external attractions for this would result in suppression, which causes more harm than good. It means that you should carry on your life as it is now, but if you don’t get what you want then accept it with a shrug of the shoulders, with a sense of detachment.
Find out your greatest needs, attachments, desires, etc. Be as critical as you can. A good method of discovering your attachments is to trace the cause of your present anger or your present unhappiness back to its source and there you will find the emotional and mental attitude that caused the disturbance. Particularly notice how you react with people whom you distinctively dislike or don’t get on with. These persons will help you to recognize and to eventually remove your emotional hang-ups. View the whole word and everyone in it as being your teacher.
Try to live in the now. Don’t live in the past by worrying about what has already happened or by reliving pleasurable past experiences. Don’t anticipate the future. Plans can be made, but see the planning as being part of the now, not as really being for the future. Try to live each moment, each present moment as fully as possible by giving your attention to the now. In this way you will start to live life to the fullest. When you do anything, from taking a bath to eating food, or sweeping the floor to earning your living, try not to think of when it will be finished. Enjoy every action that you do at the time that you do it. Try to enjoy the fact that you exist and that an expression of your existence is in your every action.
Don’t identify yourself completely with your actions, your body or your mind. Though you are trying to change your mind, it is only part of you. It is not your consciousness – the witness that sees all events that occur in your life.
Try to be more opens towards other people. Express your true feelings as much as possible. When we try to be what we are not, when we try to impress people and when we hide our inner feelings from others, we immediately experience mental tension and alienation. This tends to intensify our feelings of ‘me against the world’.
Remember that everyone has the potential to attain higher levels of awareness. A mans present attitude toward his environment or toward you is caused by mental programming. His present mode of living is temporary and will change and become more harmonious if and when he starts to understand himself and his mind. All of us have unrealized potential just waiting to be tapped. Try to see this potential in all people, no matter how different it may be.
Don’t avoid difficult situations. Normally we shape our lives so that we interact with people we dislike as little as possible. We continually try to associate ourselves with people and situations that tune in with our motional programming. As such we continue to live in a way that reinforces and satisfies our individual prejudices. Treat difficult situations and enemies as the greatest teachers. It is they who can show us most clearly the way in which our mental program works. It is our enemies who bring to the surface our emotional conflicts and prejudices. Very few of us are aware of programming and conditioning. When we recognize it then we can start to deal with it.
Try to put yourself in other people’s shoes. Instead of blindly reacting in ways that you are programmed, try to see the other person’s point of view. Remember your reaction is purely automatic. Try to change your response so that the current situation doesn’t cause you emotional upsets.
Lesson 2.6: Pages from the Book
The Root Cause of Tension
"Most people today are physically very stiff. You can test this for yourself: from a standing position, keep your legs straight and bending forwards try to touch your toes with your hands. If you can't (please do not force or strain), then this shows that your body is stiff. Because of this stiffness most people cannot sit in one position for a very long time, as is necessary in higher yogic practices, without feeling the urge to move their limbs in response to discomfort. The following simple exercises are designed to generally loosen up your body and prepare you for eventual mastery of meditation asanas. There are many possible loosening up exercises, far too many for daily practice. The following exercises are selected ones which we feel give optimum results, especially when performed systematically in the order that we have described them" (19).
Love is the essence of our life. I have written this blog with love, and I offer it to you, dear reader, with the hope that the suggestions offered here will become a vital part of your self-healing and continued well-being. ~ Ashley
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