61 - Experiencing Spiritual Unity | Swami Tattwamayananda
The lecture was given by Swami Tattwamayananda on November 27, 2020.
-6th chapter: verses 28, 29, 30, 31, 32
-28th verse: “Such a Yogi, free from all obstacles, experiences Atyantam Sukham – ultimate, infinite, spiritual bliss.”
-Atyantam Sukham is not the temporary absence of unhappiness. It is happiness itself. It is the feeling of permanently being settled in a state of contentment, even in the midst of obstacles and challenges.
-Antaraya means obstacles. Patanjali refers to the following obstacles, which cause the mind to wander - Disease, mental laziness, doubt, lack of interest, sloth, clinging to sense pleasures, false perception, lack of concentration, and unsteadiness in concentration.
-Spiritual life is about moving against our natural instinct, which is driven by the attraction of senses towards sense objects. In spiritual life, we turn the mind away from the pulls of nature. We turn it towards our true inner chamber, the Atman. In the process, we face obstacles.
-This Yogi, who experiences his unity with the transcendental reality in every moment and action, is Yoga-antaraya-varjitah – he has transcended all antarayas (obstacles) in his spiritual life. The Yogi gets the feeling of Atyantam Sukham, because these antarayas cannot distract his mind.
-29th verse: “Such a Yogi develops an equanimity of mind, an eye of evenness for all things, because he beholds the presence of Atman in all beings and he beholds the presence of all beings in his own Atman.”
-An ideal devotee may ready his holy books and go to the temple - but in his interactions with others, he sees all as children of the same God, whom he worships in his temple and whose instructions he reads in the holy book. Religion goes beyond the four walls of the temple – it reaches the hearts of everyone.
-In the Bhagavad Purana, there is a dialog between King Nimi and the Nava Yogis. In answer to the King’s question: “Who is an ideal devotee of God?”, one of the sages gives the following answer: “The one who sees in all beings the presence of God, and who sees the presence of all beings in God.“ The same answer is given in the Gita.
-30th verse: “One who sees God in all beings, and all beings in God – that person is never separated from God, and God is never separated from him. He is always in the company of God. “
-As we advance in spiritual life, our interpretation of the Divine Reality also changes. In the early stages, as we experience happiness and unhappiness, we attribute these opposites to God as well. The highest reach of spiritual evolution is when we realize the Divine Reality within our own hearts, and we experience its presence in everyone and everywhere. Then we live in the constant company of God.
-31st verse: “That Yogi, that spiritually illumined person, he is always established in this ideal of spiritual unity. He worships my presence everywhere. Whatever his mode of life, that devotee lives in me, and I live in him.”
-The favorite dwelling place of God is the pure heart of a devotee. Often, we do not allow him to stay there as we have other guests occupying the space such as: desires, anger, hatred, aversion, fear and doubt. When trying to enter, God withdraws, as he sees other guests occupying the space. If the heart is pure, God enters that residence.
-32nd verse: “He who judges pleasure and pain everywhere by the same standard that he applies to himself, that Yogi is regarded as the highest.”
-Whatever is desirable to us, we should assume is desirable to others also. We should treat others as we want to be treated by them. A spiritual seeker develops this attitude when he reaches the highest level of spiritual unity.
-The entire cosmic existence is one for a spiritual seeker who has reached this highest state. He feels compassion towards all beings and towards nature. To him, religion and spirituality transcend the barriers of culture and nationality.