On the Sangreal with Brother Donkey

Thursday, March 7, 2019. 8:44 am

I haven’t logged in here for over a week, largely because I was so busy with my work on the cruise. So much has transpired in the time that’s passed. I’ll see what I can recall, going backward.

This morning I got out of bed around 6:45 for preparation to participate in a live, online meditation from India with Amma and Bhagavan, which was scheduled for 7:30am. The strange thing was, I was unable to sleep last night. This was unusual, as I was considerably tired when I went to bed around 11:45 pm last night. I found myself spending the night, lying in bed and watching my thoughts. My mind wouldn’t stop. It didn’t disturb me, though, as I found it more curious than anything. 

I’ve had this experience now and then through the years, and quite frequently when I lived in Muktananda’s ashram. I pondered whether some unseen force or a connection on a higher level had kept me awake intentionally to serve a deeper meditation in the morning. I’ve been experiencing lately a conscious force that seems to be supporting me from deep within myself. It’s as if, as I continue to gradually merge with my higher self, that my body is cajoled like a respected, subservient beast. That is, after all, what the human form is – a soul vehicle. I think I mentioned this before, that our bodies are the beasts over which we’ve been given domain. They are our pack mules, are loyal assistants and companions on the path. Saint Francis, I was recently reminded, referred to his body as ‘Brother Donkey.’ He had it. He knew it. Saint Francis was surely awakened if not most certainly enlightened. He was one with his soul and one with Christ. This is what enabled him to stand courageously before the pope of his era, and challenge the imposing church orthodoxy. He’s a study in human oneness with the divine. 

At 7:30, as the meditation began, I was outside with my dogs, calling them in from their morning romp. I brought them in, gave them each a biscuit, and then ascended to the upstairs office in our home where I’ve meditated, written, and have had countless deep experiences for more than 20 years. Almost immediately as I sat down to meditate and closed my eyes, my pineal gland began to calmly throb in a soothing cadence. I could feel a blessing – diksha – being bestowed from participating. My awareness went deep fairly fast as I was drawn deeper and deeper. 

After about 7 minutes had passed, I opened my eyes to find that the video connection to India had been lost. I smiled over this, and concluded that watching the Youtube link didn’t matter, because the real participation was within me. I wondered if this was an intentional lesson. It was one I got nonetheless. I did later learn that the meditation only lasted for 7 minutes. 

Bhagavan has been advocating assorted sadhana practices in 7 minute increments. “Always 7 minutes” he said on one video I recently watched. For example, the daily sadhana contemplation given in our December class suggested a 7 minute contemplation on one aspect of the Self. We were given 7 aspects of the Self – one for each day of the week. And to inaugurate a meditation or another skill, it was advised to inwardly or outwardly recite the Moola Mantra 7 times. For another practice, recite it 21 times. Everything is offered in multiples of 7. 

While I awaited the start of the meditation before letting my dogs out, I happened upon a Youtube video of someone’s trek to the meditation cave of the famed Babaji. Babaji, of course, is the ageless avatar referenced in Paramahansa Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi. It was Babaji who initiated Lahiri Mahasaya into the ageless, once secretive practice of Kriya Yoga in 1861 from that very cave. Mahasaya then taught this practice to Sri Yukteshwar, the guru of Yogananda, who in turn brought it to the west in the 1920’s and opened the door for the western hemisphere’s favor for yoga and meditation that prevails to this day. 

I thought it a curious coincidence that I should stumble across this video prior to my transcontinental meditation session. When I was first learning to meditate as a teenager, it was the photo of Babaji in Yogananda’s book on which I focused, meditated, and quite frankly used to summon as a deity. I have felt Babaji’s presence in my life ever since.  I have been wondering if my more recent experiences of an unseen guide are him. In fact, I’ve had countless experiences of an unseen, benevolent guide throughout my 40 years of sadhana practice. Whether or not I was fully engaged in yoga practice or goofing off and partying more, always there was some gentle hand guiding me through my navigation of this world. But that is the magic that is available in yoga practice. There is a reason so many have practiced it for ages, for thousands of years. It is the true path, the Sangreal. The Grail is the inner Self.

My mind is quiet now. The combination of no sleep and an hour of deep meditation has left me in a nice state. I’m going to relish it for a while before heading to work in a few hours. More on my adventures later. 

Peace.