- (Spiritual Masters)
The master disciple relationship is very well represented in Bhagavad Gita, in chapter 10, where Lord Krishna reveals the infinite manifestations of his unmanifest spirit to his disciple Arjuna, and in chapter 11, where He reveals His Cosmic form, in response to Arjuna’s prayer to see what are the many aspects and forms of the Lord Himself.
In the same way, a master reveals to his disciple, when this one is ready for it, the many manifestations of God in Creation and he guides him through all the universal forms of spirit, helping him to see beyond the veils of illusion and to understand that “massive universes and their tiniest particles, majestic gods of Nature and the most insignificant of creatures, the shadow plays of good and evil – all hold their special place in the conformation of the Cosmic Image.”
The Blessed Lord said:
(1) O Mighty-Armed (Arjuna), hear thou more of My supreme utterance. For thy highest good I will speak further to thee, who listeneth joyfully.
(2) Neither the multitude of angels nor the great sages know My Uncreated Nature, for even the devas and rishis (are created beings, and hence) have an origin in Me.
(3) But whoever realizes Me to be the Unborn and Beginning less as well as the Sovereign Lord of Creation-that man has conquered delusion and attained the sinless state even while wearing a mortal body.
(4-5) Discrimination, wisdom, lack of delusion, forgiveness, truth, control of the senses, peace of mind, joy, sorrow, birth, death, fear, courage, harmlessness, equanimity, serenity, self-discipline, charity, fame, and infamy-these diverse states of beings spring from Me alone as modifications of My nature.
(6)The seven Great Rishis, the Primeval Four, and the (fourteen) Manus are also modifications of My nature, born of My thought, and endowed with (creative) powers like Mine. From these progenitors come all living creatures on earth.
(7) He who realizes by yoga the truth of My prolific manifestations and the creative and dissolving power of My Divine Yoga is unshakably united to Me. This is beyond doubt.
(8) I am the Source of everything; from Me all creation emerges. With this realization the wise, awestricken, adore Me.
(9) Their thoughts fully on Me, their beings surrendered to Me, enlightening one another, proclaiming Me always, My devotees are contented and joyful.
(10) To those thus ever attached to Me, and who worship Me with love, I impart that discriminative wisdom (buddhi yoga) by which they attain Me utterly.
(11) From sheer compassion I, the Divine Indweller, set alight in them the radiant lamp of wisdom which banishes the darkness that is born of ignorance.
(12-13) Arjuna said:
The Supreme Spirit, the Supreme Shelter, the Supreme Purity art Thou! All the great sages, the divine seer Narada, as well as Asita, Devala, and Vyasa, have thus described Thee as the Self-Evolved Eternal Being, the Original Deity, uncaused and omnipresent. And now Thou Thyself tellest me!
(14) O Keshawa (Krishna)! I consider as eternal truth all Thou hast revealed to me. Indeed, O my Lord! neither the Devas (gods) nor the Danavas (Titans) know the infinite modes of Thine appearances.
(15) O Divine Purusha, O Origin of beings, O Lord of all creatures, O God of gods, O Sustainer of the world! verily Thou alone knowest Thyself by Thyself.
(16) Therefore, please tell me exhaustively of Thy divine powers and qualities by which Thine Omnipresence sustaineth the cosmos.
(17) O Great Yogi (Krishna)! how shall I always meditate in order to know Thee truly? In what aspects and forms, O Blessed Lord, art Thou to be conceived by me?
(18) O Janardana (Krishna)! tell me more, at great length, of Thy yoga powers and Self-manifestations; far never can I hear enough of Thy nectared speech!
The Blessed Lord said:
(19) Very well, O Best of the Princes (Arjuna), I will indeed tell thee of My phenomenal expressions - but only the most outstanding ones, for there is no end to My variety.
(20) O Conqueror of Sleep (Arjuna)! I am the Self in the heart of all creatures: I am their Origin, Existence, and Finality.
(21) Among the Adityas (twelve effulgent beings), I am Vishnu; among luminaries, I am the radiating sun; among the Maruts (forty-nine wind gods), I am Marichi; among heavenly bodies, I am the moon.
(22) Among the Vedas, I am the Sama Veda; among the gods, I am Vasava (Indra); among the senses, I am mind (manas); in creatures, I am the intelligence.
(23) Of the Rudras (eleven radiant beings) I am (their leader) Shankara ("the well-wisher"); of the Yakshas and Rakshasas (astral demi-goblins), I am Kubera (lord of riches); of the Vasus (eight vitalizing beings), I am Pavaka (the god of fire, the purifying power); and of mountain peaks I am Meru.
(24) And, O son of Pritha (Arjuna), understand Me to be the chief among priests, Brihaspati; among generals, I am Skanda; among expanses of water, I am the ocean.
(25) Of the Maharishis (mighty sages), I am Bhrigu; among words, I am the one syllable Aum; among yajnas (holy ceremonies), I am japa-ajna (silent, superconscious chanting); among stationary objects, I am the Himalaya.
(26) Among all trees, I am the Ashvattha (the holy fig tree); among the devarishis (divine sages), I am Narada; among the Gandharvas (demigods), I am Chitraratha; among the siddhas (successful liberated beings), I am the muni (saint) Kapila.
(27) Among stallions, know Me to be the nectar-born Uchchaihshravas; among elephants, Indra 's white elephant, Airavata; and among men, the emperor.
(28) Among weapons, I am the thunderbolt; of bovines, I am Kamadhuk (the celestial cow that fulfills all desires). I am Kandarpa (the personified creative consciousness), the cause of childbirths; and I am Vasuki among serpents.
(29) I am Ananta ("the eternal" one) among the Naga serpents; I am Varuna (god of the ocean) among water creatures; I am Aryama among Pitris (ancestral parents); I am Yama (god of death) among all controllers.
(30) Among the Daityas (demons and giants), I am Prahlada; among measurers, I am time; among the animals, I am the king of beasts (the lion); and among birds, I am Garuda ("lord of the skies, " vehicle of Vishnu).
(31) Among purifiers, I am the breeze; among wielders of weapons, I am Rama; among aquatic creatures, I am Makara (vehicle of the god of the ocean); among streams, I am Jahnavi (the Ganges).
(32) Of all manifestations, O Arjuna, I am the beginning, middle, and end. Among all branches of knowledge, I am the wisdom of the Self; for debaters, I am discriminative logic (vada).
(33) Among all letters, I am the letter A; of all compounds, I am the dvandva (connective element). I am Immutable Time; and I am the Omnipresent Creator (the all-pervading Dispenser of Destiny) whose face is turned on all sides.
(34) I am all-dissolving Death; and I am Birth, the origin of all that will be. Among feminine manifestations (qualities of Prakriti), I am fame, success, the illumining power of speech, memory, discriminative intelligence, the grasping faculty of intuition, and the steadfastness of divine forbearance.
(35) Among Samas (hymns), I am Brihat-Saman; among poetic meters, I am Gayatri; among the months, I am Margasirsha (an auspicious winter month); among seasons, I am Kusumakwra, the flower bearer (spring).
(36) I am the gambling of the practicers of fraud; I am the radiance of the radiant; I am victory and the striving power; I am the quality of sattva among the good.
(37) Among the Vrishnis, I am Vasudeva (Krishna); among the Pandavas, I am Dhananjaya (Arjuna); among the munis (saints), I am Vyasa; among the sages, I am the savant Ushanas.
(38) I am the rod of the discipliners; I am the art of those who seek victory; I am also the silence of all hidden things, and the wisdom of all knowers.
(39) I am, furthermore, whatsoever constitutes the reproductive seed of all beings. There is nothing, O Arjuna, moving or motionless, that can abide without Me.
(40) O Scorcher of Foes (Arjuna), limitless are the manifestations of My divine attributes; My concise declaration is a mere intimation of My proliferating glorious powers.
(41) Any being that is a worker of miracles, that is a possessor of true prosperity, that is endowed with great prowess, know all such to be manifested sparks of My radiance.
(42) But what need hast thou, O Arjuna, for the manifold details of this wisdom? (Understand simply:) I, the Unchanging and Everlasting, sustain and permeate the entire cosmos with but one fragment of My Being!
Aum, Tat, Sat.
In the Upanishad of the holy Bhagavad Gita – the discourse of Lord Krishna to Arjuna, which is the scripture of yoga and the science of God-realization – this is the tenth chapter, called "Vibhuti Yoga (Divine Manifestations). "
(1) Thou hast compassionately revealed to me the secret wisdom of the true Self, thus banishing my delusion.
(2) O Lotus-Eyed (Krishna)! Thou hast told me extensively of the beginning and end of all beings, and of Thine eternal sovereignty.
(3) O Great One! truly hast Thou thus declared Thyself. Yet, O Purushottama! I long to see Thee in Divine Embodiment (Thine Ishwara-Form).
(4) O Master, O Lord of Yogis! If Thou deemest me able to see It, show to me Thine Infinite Self!
The Blessed Lord said:
(5) Behold, O son of Pritha (Arjuna)! by hundreds and by thousands My divine forms -multicolored, omnifarious!
(6) Behold the Adityas, the Vasus, the Rudras, the twin Ashvins, the Maruts, and many wonders hitherto unknown!
(7) Here and now, O Conqueror of Sleep (Arjuna)! behold as unified in My Cosmic Body all worlds, all that moves or is motionless, and whatever else thou desirest to see.
(8) But thou canst not see Me with mortal eyes. Therefore I give thee sight divine. Behold My supreme power of yoga!
(9) Sanjaya said to King Dhritarashtra:
With these words Hari (Krishna), the exalted Lord of Yoga, revealed to Arjuna the Consummate Embodiment, the Cosmic-Bodied Ishvara-Form.
resence of the Deity - infinite in forms, shining in every direction of space, omnipotence all-pervading, adorned with countless celestial robes and garlands and ornaments, upraising heavenly weapons, fragrant with every lovely essence, His mouths and eyes everywhere!
(12) If a thousand suns appeared simultaneously in the sky, their light might dimly resemble the splendor of that Omnific Being!
(13) There, resting within the infinite Form of the God of gods, Arjuna beheld the entire universe with all its diversified manifestations.
(14) Then the Winner of Wealth (Arjuna), wonder-struck, his hair standing on end, his palms together in a prayerful gesture, bowing his head in awe before the Lord, addressed Him:
(15 – 34) Arjuna said:
Beloved Lord, Adored of gods! Behold,
Thy body holds
All fleshly tenants, seers fine,
And diverse angel-gods divine.
Dwelling deep in mystery cave,
The Serpent Nature 's forceful crave,
Though fierce and subtle, now is tame,
Forgetful of her deadly game;
And Sovran Brahma, God of gods,
On lotus seat is snug secured.
Great Cosmic-Bodied Lord of worlds,
Oh, I behold, again behold
Thee all and everywhere,
Thy countless arms, trunks, mouths, and eyes!
Yet drooping, dark, my knowledge lies
About Thy birth and reign and ending here.
O Blazing, Furious Flame, O Blinding Ray,
Thy focused power's aglow: Thy Name
To dark'st abysmal lair.
Gilded with a crown of stars
And wielding mace of sovereign power,
Thou whirlest forth, O Burning Phoebus,
Thine evolution's circling discus.
Immortal Brahma, all Supreme,
Thou Cosmic Shelter, Wisdom's Theme,
Eternal Dharma's Guardian true,
Thou diest not I ever knew!
O Birthless, Fleshless, Deathless One,
I see Thine endless, working arms,
Thine ever-watching eyes
Of suns and moons, the staring skies;
And from Thy mouth spumes throbbing flame,
As utterest Thou the Aum, Thy Cosmic Name.
Thy Self-born luster shields from harm,
And all creation, distance-flung, doth warm.
O Sovereign Soul! 'twixt earth and home of gods,
Directions all, and earthly sods,
All high abodes and all encircling spheres,
By Thee pervaded, far and near.
The worlds-triune awestruck by fear,
Thy dreadful wondrous form adore.
In Thee the gods their entry make;
With folded hands, afraid, some pray to shelter take
In Thee. The seers great, and heaven's-path successful ones,
With superb chants of "Peace!" do worship Thee and Thee alone.
Th' eleven lamps of heaven;
The twelve bright suns;
The grizzly eight,
The starry lusters great;
Aspiring hermits; patron gods,
The agents of the cosmic lords;
The twin-born princes strong,
Of valor known so long;
Two-score and nine noil breezes' force,
That binds the atom close;
The long-passed guardian spirits all;
The demigoblins, demigods, and demons tall;
And mighty ones in Spirit's path,
In wonder gaze upon Thy blazoned worth.
I Thee behold, Colossal-Armed!
With starry eyes and countless cheeks,
With endless hands, and legs adorned with lotus feet.
Thy chasmed mouth with doomsday's teeth
Doth yawn to swallow swooning worlds above, beneath,
And leaves a distilled joyous awe in me:
Thy grandeur I and all are wonder-struck to see!
To view the bowels of the void deep all filled with Thee
Thy gaping mouth and diverse hues of fiery lustrous body
O Vishnu of the flaming sight,
Thou quite o'erpowerest me, my peace dost fright.
Ferocious teeth and deadly fires do howl
In mouths of Thine that at me scowl. Directions four are lost and gone;
Com passion show! I find no peace alone; O Cosmic Guardian, Lord of gods,
Be pleased t'accept my humble pleading words.
The sons of senses swayed with kingly pride,
With ego, karmic habit, worldly lure, abide
And wait to leap upon our wisdom's chiefs;
And yet they all do ride
The race of death, to fall and hide
Fore'er in Thy devouring mouth,
Adorned with crushing cruel teeth uncouth.
The victor and the vanquished must
(Thine offspring both, the righteous and ungodly ones)
Thy love still claim; yet all some day shall kiss the dust,
And sleep on common floor of earth.
The shattered skulls of some are seen,
As caught Thy greedy teeth between.
As diverse, restless, watery waves
Of river branches all do crave
To force through crowded wavelets' way
And meet where Neptune's home long lay,
E'en so, heroic streams of life
Do Plunge to meet in maddest strife
Within Thy foaming mouth of flaming sea,
Where sparks of lives all dance in Thee.
As insects lost in beauty's game
All swiftly, thoughtless, rush to flame,
So fog-born passion's fires pretend
To glow like heavenly light of Thine,
And draw on mortals to attend
The trumpet call to deathly line.
Thy mouth ablaze
Doth bring to gaze
Its leaping tongues to lick
The angry blood of strong and weak;
Thou, Gourmand God, dost eat
With hunger infinite.
O Vishnu, Thou dost scorch
The worlds with all-pervading fiery torch.
Be Pleased, O First of gods;
I ache to know, Primeval Lord,
True who Thou art – O Fiery Mood,
Yet so benign and good.
Oh, tell to me Thy Royal Will;
For it I know not still.
The Blessed Lord then said:
In guise of Endless Doom
I come as avaricious Time to seize and room
In burning maw
Of Mine the weaklings' awe,
And all the mortal meat
Of weary worlds of deathly change, and treat
Them with My nectar-life
To new and fearless, better strife.
E'en if thou dost forbear to slay
Thy wicked foes, still they - and warriors all in brave array –
Will sure and certain timely have to fall,
Ah, in My righteous teeth-of-law, withal.
Arise, awake! Arise, awake!
Dash thou upon the foe, the flesh a captive make;
And win the victor's fame
With battle-hunted game;
Wealth of the King
Of Peace, and heaven's kingdom, bring!
I know right now the happenings all
That mystic future forth doth call;
And thus thy foes and warriors true,
Long, long ago I slew,
Ere shalt thine agent-hand
(That I would wield to land
Thy Joes on death's dim shore). Now understand!
My agent thou;
Oh, this is how
I work My plans - the universe –
Through instruments diverse;
'Tis I who slew and yet will slay the senses' train
Through thee, as through both past and future ones,
My soldiers sane!
Sanjaya said to King Dhritarashtra:
(35) After hearing the words of Keshava (the maya-transcendent Krishna), the diademed one (Arjuna, haloed with cosmic vision), trembling and awestricken, joining his palms in worshipful supplication, again made humble obeisance and addressed Krishna in a quavering voice.
(36) O Hrishikesha (Krishna)! Rightly are the worlds proud and gladdened to exude Thy glory! The demons, terrified, seek safety in distance; while the multitudes of siddhas (perfected beings) bow down to worship Thee.
(37) And why should they not pay Thee homage, O Vast Spirit? For greater art Thou than Brahma the Creator, who issued from Thee. O Infinite One, O God of gods, O Shelter of the Universe, Thou art the Imperishable-the Manifested, the Unmanifested, and That beyond (the Ultimate Mystery).
(38) The Primal God art Thou! the Pristine Spirit, the Final Refuge of the Worlds, the Knower and the Known, the Supreme Fulfillment! Thine Omnipresence shines in the universe, O Thou of Inexhaustible Form!
(39) O Flowing Life of Cosmic Currents (Vayu), O King of Death (Yama), O God of Flames (Agni), O Sovereign of Sea and Sky (Varuna), O Lord of Night (the Moon), O Divine Father of Countless Offspring (Prajapati ), O Ancestor of All! To Thee praise, praise without end! To Thee my salutations thousandfold!
(40) O Endless Might, O Invincible Omniscient Omnipresence, O All-in-All! I bow to Thee in front and behind, I bow to Thee on the left and the right, I bow to Thee above and beneath, I bow to Thee enclosing me everywhere!
(41) Unaware of this, Thy Cosmic Glory, and thinking of Thee as a familiar companion, often have I audaciously hailed Thee as "Friend" and "Krishna" and "Yadava." For all such words, whether spoken carelessly or with affection;
(42) And for any irreverence I have displayed toward Thee, O Unshakable Lord! in lighthearted mood at mealtimes or while walking or sitting or resting, alone with Thee or in others' company – for all such unintentional slights, O Thou Illimitable! I beg forgiveness.
(43) Father of All art Thou! of animate and inanimate alike. None but Thee is worthy of worship, O Guru Sublime! Unparalleled by any other in the three worlds, who may surpass Thee, O Lord of Power Incomparable?
(44) Therefore, O Adorable One, I cast myself in obeisance at Thy feet to implore Thy pardon. As a father to his son, as a friend to a close friend, as a lover to his beloved, do Thou, O Lord, forgive me!
(45) Overjoyed am I at having gazed upon a vision never seen before, yet my mind is not free from terror. Be merciful to me, O Lord of gods, O Shelter of the Worlds! Show to me only Thy Deva-form (as the benign Vishnu).
(46) I long to see Thee as before, as the Four-Armed Vishnu, diademed and holding Thy mace and discus. Reappear in that same form, O Thou who art Thousand-Armed and Universe-Bodied!
The Blessed Lord said:
(47) I have graciously exercised Mine own Yoga Power to re¬veal to thee, O Arjuna, and to none other! this Supreme Primeval Form of Mine, the Radiant and Infinite Cosmos!
(48) No mortal man, save only thyself, O Great Hero of the Kurus! is able to look upon My Universal Shape-not by sacrifices or charity or works or rigorous austerity or study of the Vedas is that vision attainable.
(49) Be not affrighted or stupefied at seeing My Terrible Aspect. With dreads removed and heart rejoicing, behold once more My familiar form!
Sanjaya said to King Dhritarashtra:
(50) After speaking thus, Vasudeva, "the Lord of the World," resumed his own shape as Krishna. He, the Great-Souled One, appearing to Arjuna in the form of grace, consoled His fear-stricken devotee.
(51) O Granter of All Wishes (Krishna)! As I gaze on Thee again in gentle human shape, my mind is quieted and I feel more like my natural self.
The Blessed Lord said:
(52) Very difficult it is to behold, as thou hast done, the Vision Universal! Even the gods ever yearn to see it.
(53-54) But it is not unveiled through one's penance or scriptural lore or gift-giving or formal worship. O Scorcher of the Sense-Foes (Arjuna)! only by undivided devotion (commingling by yoga all thoughts in One Divine Perception) may I be seen as thou hast beheld Me in My Cosmic Form and recognized in reality and finally embraced in Oneness!
(55) Re who works for Me alone, who makes Me his goal, who lovingly surrenders himself to Me, who is nonattached (to My delusive cosmic-dream worlds), who bears ill will toward none (beholding Me in all)- he enters My being, O Arjuna!
Aum, Tat, Sat.
In the Upanishad of the holy Bhagavad Gita – the discourse of Lord Krishna to Arjuna, which is the scripture of yoga and the science of God-realization – this is the eleventh chapter, called "The Vision of the Cosmic Form. "
Published by Natha.net
From "God talks with Arjuna - The Bhagavad Gita", by Sri Paramahansa Yogananda
by yoga teacher, Dan Bozaru
The type of meditation to which we refer does not involve the mental utterance of a MANTRA; it also does not involve any complex visualisations, no colours, no lights, no landscapes, no gods, no angels, no saints or other beings or entities that may guide us. We refer here exclusively to meditations which directly target our divine essential nature, which is the Supreme Self (ATMAN). We are not interested in anything else, we do not fall into reveries without a clear purpose, we are not interested at all by the experiences, no matter how complex, as all this belongs to the relative domain, i.e are part of the manifested world and, therefore, as they come, they eventually must go. In our meditation we aim to focus ourselves entirely on our deepest nature. This is a very abstract approach, Jnana yoga meditation or the corollary of this, ATMA YOGA.
However, how do we meditate? How do we do what we want to call "meditation"? What do we think about? In what way? Where do we start and what must we do during meditation?
These are natural questions, which occur mostly in the early stages of our practice. However, is good to mention from the beginning that there is no "manual" of meditation, which contains a set sequence of steps to be followed. If it were so rigid, meditation would turn quickly in an almost mechanical activity, being devoid of spontaneity and of unimaginable complexity due to the subtle nuances involved. This is why, the way meditation is done cannot be explained. The way we meditate is characteristic to every human being individually, a feature which depends on many factors, such as: personality, nature of the impurities covering the consciousness of their being, subtle trends, aspirations, etc. Therefore, we cannot draw a general rule in meditation, which is followed by all practitioners. What we can do however, is to mention a few landmarks and principal points of interest mainly involved in the process of meditation, so that they can be adjusted according to our specific needs.
In this text I will not remind you of the aspects that I am sure many of you already know, because they were probably presented in previous camps or specialised groups, such as: the position in which it is good to do meditation, the time which is most conducive for meditations, proper nutrition for successfully making long meditations, the mental state in which it is best to be when we start meditation, how to breathe during meditation etc. Also, we will not talk about the beginning stages of meditation, which aims at a particular organization and "levelling" of the mental flux, to become more focused and coherent. We believe that all these elements are well known; they are simple, easy to apply and constitute the yogi ABC in the mystery of meditation. In fact, from a certain stage of progress in the practice of meditation, they become, in a certain sense, some "automations", because the mind is already controlled to a certain extent. Thus, a whole series of factors - such as body position, breathing, moment of time etc. - are almost automatically integrated through the power of habit and the "energetic matrix" that is specific to the meditation concerned.
Let's assume that every day we meditate for a certain period of time. All the elements involved in this process (both somatic cells (i.e, the body), as well as the psycho-mental ones) are important. Generally speaking, the condition of an element influences the condition of other elements. In other words, the ensemble of the mind and physical body function as a whole: a state or action in an area of this ensemble has consequences in another area. However, if, for example, the body position is comfortable and we feel good, without moving at all, and without causing discomfort in any area of the body, this is not a guarantee that the mind is equally as motionless and focused; it can roam very successfully, even if we keep the spine perfectly straight, even if our eyes are closed and even if we do not move at all. But, if the situation is reversed, i.e the mind is very focused and vigilant, then we can be sure that the body is still, that we do not lose attention and that, in some cases, we even completely lose the sensation of the contours of the physical form.
The main "difficulty" in meditation Self revelation is that there is no "support" the mind can cling to. The Supreme Self is just a notion in the beginning, which the mind tends to immediately dismiss because it does not find an element of comparison. From this we understand that the Self and the mind seem to be two different realities. We know, theoretically, that the Self is our ultimate nature, eternal and unchanging, thus it satisfies our real requirements. But the mind? Is it also a reality? Can there be two realities? If so, what exists between them? By investigating more closely: the mind, evidently , changes almost without interruption, "the material" by which it works is thought. We say: "Thoughts come and go." That's right, but as soon as a thought goes, a new one comes in its place, so that, apparently, there is no break between thoughts. They have an ephemeral characteristic, i.e appear and then disappear. Even when we say we are focused, in reality there is a rapid succession of thoughts, some very short, in this seemingly continuous mental flux. Therefore, if the mind is actually the work of thoughts and if thoughts are ephemeral, that means the mind itself is ephemeral, in other words it is not an independent reality. If it was truly real, the mind ought to remain the same for eternity, unchanging and, in addition, not dependent on anyone or anything. Or, the mind is in continuous motion and change in almost every moment and its operation may be influenced by various factors both inside and outside the being.
Therefore we have a first fundamental conclusion: The Self is the only true existence, because, however and wherever we look for another reality outside it, we would reach the same result as in the case of the mind and that is, that everything is an emanation from the same source, which is unique (the Self). We could say that this was obvious anyway through our prior knowledge; we could say that we already knew this from lectures and from what we have heard before. This is true, but that knowledge was theoretical, when it is acquired through mental analysis during meditation, it is practical, i.e supported by personal convictions. This element is fundamental. Any step forward on the path of spiritual evolution and, implicitly, any progress in meditation occurs after a correct understanding that we obtain through an accumulation of knowledge. We will never reveal the Self based on theoretical knowledge, nor based on the accounts of others, but only as a result of an inner process of profound understanding, which takes place in our conscience.
Every conclusion, no matter how obvious it is, should be grounded inside our mind and, furthermore, it must be repeated again and again, in successive meditations, to ensure its implementation deep in the consciousness. Otherwise, the mind does not become convinced of that conclusion, even if it seems to be clear to us. Again and again, without getting tired or bored, without irritation or annoyance, without agitation or superficiality, we have to review different subjects or aspects of our meditation, from different perspectives. In this way we gradually master better and better our knowledge of this reality. For example, the Self is the only reality. Strictly speaking, this is presented to us as being taken for granted and indeed, it is an obvious fact in itself, without necessarily requiring a demonstration, just as how we say it is not necessary to prove that light shines, because this is an obvious fact to everyone.
But, even if the conscious mind has no problem (in the case of most people) to accept this concept about the Self, does not mean however that it is understood or that it allows it to establish in the existence of these beings. Let's not forget that, in principle, the mind is really the ego, i.e that false structure of ideas and concepts which man has formed about himself, with which they associate a body form and a name. If the Self was recognized as the supreme reality and that everything arises from it, the mind and implicitly the ego would no longer have any base of support, meaning that they would no longer deceive the being, making it believe that it is physical body, the name on a ID card or passport, ideas about life or the emotions it experiences and with which it identifies almost completely in every day.
From the role of authoritarian ruler of human life and destiny, the mind would then be forced to become a mere servant subject to the directives of the Supreme Consciousness, which is the Self. It is clear that the mind avoids this by all means and at first it will ignore knowledge of profound spiritual notions, only creating the impression that they are mastered. Paraphrasing a proverb, it is like "dogs bark, but the thief sees the road", without being disturbed. Now we understand better why it is important to accord careful attention to any inner analysis, which must be repeated until they are completed assimilation.
- (Past events)
Silence loves me…
Sometimes silence is much more than just the absence of sound. Sometimes silence has it’s own life, a being, a spirit, a place to be. A beloved. Sometimes you just don’t talk – but sometimes silence starts talking back to you. It speaks from your heart, tells you who you really are, beyond all the words, beyond all the thoughts, beyond all your ideas about what to do in this life – it feels like it reminds you that you are much more than you think. You are not ever what you think you are.
Before I went to silent retreat with Natha Yoga Center on Stevns Klint, I was wondering what I would experience. If I would reach exciting states, if I would have a lot to tell afterwards, if it would change me. If I would get scared when I met the silence. When I met myself – the one that I really am.
My body reacted with symptoms of illness before the camp, and I was a little nervous – but also looking forward, I felt like I was going to meet a love done after a long time, after having missed him for a long time. I felt I would start a love relation with my own soul, after having been very focused on other people’s thoughts and opinions for my whole life, and on what to do to be good enough. I felt I would finally meet my own heart – but I didn’t realise how radical the consequences would be.
The frame for the retreat was that we were in mauna, where you don’t speak or communicate, during the camp, and that we had several hours of meditation every day, and tried to be as introvert as possible. That we would do something else than we usually do. We were in Stevns Naturcenter, which is placed in the most beautiful nature, with the sea almost just outside the door, and with tall trees, lots of birds, endless skies. The nights were blessed with stars and beauty. And the days were filled with the sound of the rain, the fragrance of the wet trees, and the longing for the sea. We were a lot of people there, but the point was to give us a possibility that elsewhere we would have to go to a cave in the Himalayas to find – that we could live so introvert and be so quiet inside that we could focus on our true nature.
In the first week, we worked on understanding who we are NOT – that we are not the mind, with it´s thoughts and feelings, but also that we are not the body. Vi had fantastic lectures where we heard how some of the great spiritual masters have travelled from an ordinary life to a life in Light – an enlightened life. We meditated on the words and teachings, and in this way their experiences built a foundation in us, and settled in us.
Before the camp, I was concerned if I could take it – if I would meet a lot of inner ghosts, that would scare me, or if I would suddenly begin talking or do other unconscious actions that would ruin the retreat for me. I was also afraid to produce beautiful experiences or inner images that would be more in the category ’astral dreams’ than real experiences of something more profound, something higher than the astral realm. I was afraid to stay in a svadhisthana-spirituality (Svadhisthana is the energy center in our being, that is connected to the erotic and creative energies, and to desire and the search for pleasure), where I would have pleasant experiences, that would satisfy my ego very much – but where I wouldn’t actually open towards God.
In the first days, I was very very blissful – I was happy to put all my social insecurities aside and to be allowed just to be in my own world, and in the night time I would lie in my bed and look at the stars in the sky and just feel… happy. And we learned how to de-identify regarding to all the things, we are not – and I understood, it was so obvious to me that I have never seen reality, only my own images of it, and these images come from the one I think I am. And who is strongly attached to prejudices, judging others and myself, a closed heart, lack of surrender, and always preoccupied with thoughts of either the future or the past. I was so ecstatic to see all this! It felt like being an innocent child, that can sit by the feet of God, and just be the one I am – and in full confidence and with trust in the heart give it all to Him, without any thoughts if He can and will help me – because He is omnipotent and He is Love! I felt no desire to keep anything to myself, hide anything – I just wanted to surrender it all to Him.
We learned some fantastic techniques to see how we identify with what we are not – and I was just so happy to see that I was not and am not all the nonsense, that haunts my mind.
We also learned about some of the cosmic powers, Mahavidya (In traditional tantrism, it is understood that God manifests through ten aspects, symbolized as ten goddesses, and they are called Mahavidya or the ten cosmic powers) and their special gifts of grace to the ones seeking Atman – the ones seeking the revelation of Reality. It was a true journey in joy and mystery, and I felt so blessed.
I also felt great irritation and anger – the slightest noise or disturbance from the others could make me extremely irritated and angry – and I watched my resonance to see if it would then dissolve. And I was angry with myself for not ’just’ opening my heart – and I saw how it became more and more difficult for me to surrender to the present moment. At the same time I was very happy to see this anger – because I learned that it cannot harm me, it cannot touch my soul, or Atman. I could see that the anger came from my mind, but also that no matter how much place it took on my inner ’screen’, I was still united with endless love. That was tremendously healing for me – because normally I run away from the feelings, I don’t like, for instance anger, jealousy or envy – but at the same time, I run away from all the people or situations, that could trigger these emotions, and trigger the risk to feel them, and then I lose so much. I shut off for love. And i learned that exactly the feelings, I find the most difficult to live with, can be the most wonderful and unexpected gate to unconditional love, to unity with all human beings, and to an open heart.
In the next part of the retreat it was time to go deeper in the meditations. I was very sleepy and tired, I was not able to sleep much at night, 3 -4 hours, and some of the meditations I just spent staying awake. But at the same time I had a feeling that now I had consecrated the meditations and received an answer, then also this was integrated and a part of the divine plan – and now, after the camp, I understand that I had to fully let go of my desire for spiritual experiences, so that God could hold me in His hands.
I understand that I had to come down on my knees and feel totally lost in order for Him to be allowed to have access to my being.
And sometimes in the meditations I surrendered so much, let so much go of all my ideas of what was supposed to happen now, and I just welcomed everything, totally relaxed – that I became witness, became heart, became Mother, became love, became Present Moment, became the one I really am.
There were states with no desires or identification with the mind, there were states of eternity and unity with All, there were states of deep peace – not as feelings, but as observations.
And I experienced that a lot of new nuances were available – it was as if the silence made it possible to perceive much more subtle nuances in reality – as if eternity and unity is hidden between all the phenomena, I know from my senses and perceptions.
I had wonderful moments with Grieg, our spiritual guide. One of the things that surprised me the most was experiencing how I stopped focusing on his words, his teachings, his physical appearance – and was allowed to see him as the one, he has always been and will always be. And I remembered the first time I came to the school for tantra class, and saw his picture, and was told that he was the one who had founded the school – and I kneeled before the picture and thanked him for giving me the possibility to go to this school and learn so many wonderful things. I didn’t know anything about what else he is at that time – I just felt a deep gratitude. In these moments in the camp where I experienced him beyond all appearances, beyond body, age, teaching, expression, I felt that he had found me in the middle of the ocean of people, and called me, and led me to this moment – and I knew that since he had loved me forever, then also I was eternal. And i knew that also I will reach enlightenment in the right moment, because I am in his hands and love – it can only turn out for the best! I felt so blessed, loved and full of gratitude – and full of trust. And that it is fantastic that I am exactly where I am now – for this is my starting point for my further journey.
Sometimes I experienced how everything I think I know, dissolved in front of me – and I had moments where I said goodbye to everything, I thought I knew, everything, that I thought that I loved. I said goodbye to parents, sister and brother, family, friends, ambitions, talents, dreams, attachments, pains, identifications, self-hatred – and there were moments of deep loneliness, because nothing was as I had always thought it was. But these moments transformed into deep bliss, when I saw that the deep pains that I have always carried, and thought I could never release – dissolved in front of me. I realised that the confirmation, I have always wanted from others, was in fact impossible to have – because other people don’t exist, I only see my image of them. The person, I see as X, is not X – I only see my image of him. I realised that when I am angry or jealous, it comes from things in my own mind, because I do not see reality – and therefore there is no reason to feel bad about it. I felt so many times that I chose to feel bad about things that are not real – because since I was never born and will never die, and since I never saw reality, but live in a hall of mirrors – than the state of Witness is the only true place to be. And that it is unrealistic to feel bad about anything – because the things I feel bad about, never happened, and they are not happening now either, and they will never happen.
The present moment is always sufficient and abundant and ecstatic – it contains all.
There was a special moment that I like to return to now afterwards, with hope and longing. I realised during the camps that I long so much for loving in perfect freedom and without conditions, like God – but also that I fear it deeply. Because if I didn’t, obviously I would already love in that way. But at one point I had a very strong experience of having a glimpse of how it will be to have a totally open heart – and how I through empathy would be able to heal others with no boundaries, let go of my own low resonances and set others free – and how I would be able to release their hearts. This moment is till very clear to me, as something I desire very much and deep in my being.
To be able to let go of the fear to love unconditionally, so I can reach that state of empathy.
When the retreat ended, I wanted to get home fast – I didn’t want to start talking to the other participants about our experiences, because I didn’t want my ego to cut this silence into small appropriate pieces, that might make me happy, but that would also be so interpreted by the ego that I would not be able to transform. I wanted to contain all the things I had learned inside, and not ejaculate it. And I wanted more silence. So I left in a hurry – but happy.
In these days after the camp, I have felt a great longing for meditating, and meditating for long periods, and for getting to know my heart even more, and getting to know it so well, that it will be a gate to the one I really am.
I have also felt that is is immensely much easier for me to center in the heart – and release any desire to center anywhere else. I feel a lot more self-confidence – I guess it did my Manipura (the energycenter or chakra connected to will power, self confidence and the ability to transform your life) well to show up for all the meditations, no matter if I was tired or ill. Anyway it has become easier for me to say what I see, and say what I think.
And I have a strong feeling that I am facing big changes in my life. My mind has no plans, but I can feel that my heart is strong and that it leads me – and I don’t really think about where it is going, I fully trust it will take me to the best position for both my and the world outside. Karma yoga (which is when you offer the karmic fruits of your actions, and your actions, to God, with love) has turned into a true joy for me, and even though my mind creates stress when I see how much I am supposed to do, then I also feel full confidence in my heart, and I see that time is shaping so I manage to overcome it all in magical ways, and that I have strength to do it. It is truly amazing to see – love in action.
I am deeply grateful for the retreat – I am so grateful for having shared those days with wonderful people, and many times during the meditations I saw all the beautiful souls that surrounded me with light, and I saw the angels supporting us, surrounding us with love and kindness. I feel immensely grateful to Grieg, and I love to feel him as the other half of my heart. I am deeply grateful for the possibility to love him so much more – I could not have received any better presents for Christmas. I also feel deep gratitude towards Natha Yoga Center – and I am still really amazed that it is possible for find so profound, transforming and authentic teaching in the middle of my Januarylife in Denmark – you know, I am just an ordinary human being. That it is possible for me to find teaching that leads me to the depths of my heart and to see glimpses of the Source – reality.
Silence became my Beloved during the retreat. I have always dreamt of obtaining inner peace – as long as I didn’t have to release my attachments, and if i could be allowed to be the same, if I could be allowed to ’sleep at the steering wheel’ in my life. I dreamt that God would make it so that it didn’t hurt that I was ignorant. But silence became my Beloved during the retreat – the silence, the neutral point within – and I feel I am flirting with life, with reality, and I see how the layers of reality and illusion mix, and I get seduced and fall in love with this game – also when it hurts. I take the response, but I don’t take it so personal.
I know I was never born and that I will never die – I don’t know this because somebody told me, but because I found it in my heart. By releasing all the things, I weren’t, and releasing all the things I wanted to be – and instead I was just a little fool, who was sitting trying to stay awake in meditation – but at the same time, I was One with the Supreme – in a magical way.
I look so much forward for meditating again! And for every moment of yoga, every moment of giving myself to others, every moment of what life is really about.
And every moment of resistance – for that is exactly where I meet the one, that I am not – and then the One, that Is forever, can be revealed.
By Gregorian Bivolaru
Love is one of the fundamental realities of God. By discovering love, we discover the existence of God. Love is Its essential "substance". The infinite energy of love comes from God and creates everything that is good, divine, harmonious, true, ecstatic. All the wonderful manifestations contain in themselves the mysterious and deeply unifying energy of love. When love is in all of us, then we are all in God. The ineffable energy of love is the endless and all-powerful source of harmonious life that manifests as happiness, joy, compassion, goodness and ecstasy. Everything that is good, beautiful and true exists through the mysterious energy of love. And nothing that is truly sublime can exist and maintain itself without the energy of love.
Everything that is uplifting, God-like and enchanting contains this mysterious energy of love. The energy of love is endless and eternal and both the source and the ultimate purpose of all beings that aspire for God. The human being that is often nourished on love, evolves much faster toward perfection, enlightenment and union with God.
The human being that gives up love (due to egoism and stupidity) separates itself from one of the essential energies of God and thus takes the road toward dispersion and self-destruction since then it loses its coherence and cohesion.
Love and Freedom are inseparable, since without Freedom we cannot talk about love, but about constraint.
Love is an essential criterion and at the same time the quickest method of harmonious development of the human being. If there is great love, the Total Reality of God is reflected in the Microcosm of our being.
Whoever doesn't love at all must not be surprised that he will not be loved at all.
Whoever loves little, little will he be loved.
Whoever loves a lot, a lot will he be loved.
Whoever loves endlessly, without end will he be loved.
If you yearn to be loved much, you must remember that for this you must love much in the first place.
Sooner or later you will be offered the love that you deserve, measured on the same scale as the love that you have given. Even if somebody overwhelms you with a great love, you will not be able to receive it unless you truly deserve it. When you are truly prepared to receive endless love that is deep, overwhelming and sublime, then a person will come into your life who is able to offer this deep, overwhelming and sublime love.
If you love an ideal archetype with intensity, deeply and overwhelmingly. And if you have no lover for the time being that can return this love. In a wonderful way you are actually preparing yourself (consciously or not) for the moment when you will encounter a person that will give you the love for which you did everything to deserve.
Let's not forget that love without a solid foundation of truth is like a chaotic water flow in a river without banks.
Great love and a perfect transfiguration makes our lover ever more beautiful.
When you love enough, you discover first of all what is beautiful and wonderful in the person you love. In front of the one who loves with passion beauty unveils itself and grows through continuous transfiguration. Each human being falls in love with a person that complements and fulfill him / her. The human being that we love passionately is our beauty for us. For anyone who lacks spiritual intuition, a beautiful face and a beautiful body can hide an evil soul.
Transfiguration shows us that beauty is the child of love.
A heart that is constantly in love with everything that is beautiful, true and good, will never grow old. Beauty alone without grace, lacks attractiveness. Beauty combined with grace gives charm and makes the person almost irresistible. Beauty without goodness and intelligence is like flat beer that was opened the night before. Beautiful women are seldom wise.
Beauty lasts until ugliness starts to set in, but wisdom (once attained) lasts forever. A person that is only beautiful is good to look at, but with a person that has wisdom is easy to live, since this person can help you to awaken from ignorance and become wise and happy.
Youth has a beautiful face and body, but wisdom makes the mind and soul beautiful. A charming woman with a beautiful body is a mute recommendation of Mother Nature.
Beautiful persons must be very lucid and attentive since arrogance is easily awaken when you are beautiful, and then vanity replaces beauty.
Give up wickedness, egoism, envy, jealousy, vanity, impatience, hate, lack of tolerance, stupidity. Don't forget that when love becomes infinite, the impossible becomes easily feasible. Don't forget that, as the Romanian sculptor Brancusi said, "When we stop being like a child, we are already dead". This is why you should awaken and amplify the child within. In this way you will become and stay forever young. Being all the time like a child and staying young is a wonderful gift that every one of us can receive.
Samuel Ullman wrote in "Youth": "Youth is not a time of life, it is a state of mind" (in the Yogic language, a resonance with the beneficial subtle energies of youth). He also wrote:
"Youth means a temperamental predominance of courage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over a life of ease."
"You do not become old just because you lived a certain number of years. You become old because you turned away from your love and your high ideal. Years wrinkle your skin. Giving up your high ideal wrinkles your soul.
Petty preoccupations, doubt, suspicion, fear and desperation are our insidious enemies that slowly make us round-shouldered and transform us into dust even before we die.
Young is that person who loves always and being very curious is continuously amazed and discovers many mysteries where other people don't see anything out of the ordinary. This person always asks questions, such as 'Why?', 'What happens next?', etc. Such a person determines the events of his life through his creative thinking and always finds new happiness in the divine play of life.
You are as young as your love and faith.
You are as old as your isolation and doubt.
You are as young as the greatness of your self-confidence and hopes.
You are as old as your discouragement.
You will always stay young as long as you will be full of love and goodwill and open towards everything that is beautiful, good, true, great and divine. Receptive to the voice of love, to the people around you, to the infinite and to God.
If, in spite of all, your heart will be bitten by pessimism one day and tormented by cynicism because you did not heed this advice, may the good Lord have mercy upon your old and rigid heart!"
In the New Testament, St. Paul says the following about love (Corinthians 13): "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and I have not love, I am as sounding as brass or a tingling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge - and though I have all faith so that I could move mountains, and I have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have no love, it profiteth me nothing. Love suffereth long and is kind. Love envieth not. Love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up. Love doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own fulfillment, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil, rejoiceth not in iniquity but rejoiceth in truth. Love beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Love never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall end. Whether there be tongues, they shall cease. Whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect cometh, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child. But when I became a man, I put away children things. For now we see through a glass, darkly - but then face to face. Now I know in part - but then I shall know even as also I am known. And now there are these three left: Faith, Hope and Love. But the greatest of them is Love."
- (Past events)
By Vasile Szavo, Yoga and Tantra student
“The ego is the freedom of the mind to choose anything else than GOD”
- one of Mihai Stoian’s thoughts shared with us in this silent retreat.
I believe that only the Divine Grace was the one guiding me and making possible for me the Iceland Silent Retreat in January – February 2011.
First there was the state of longing for God after the Hiatus spiral in August in Costinesti, 2010, then, in the November Archangel’s Week, the mysterious benefic ‘obsession’ for the meditation music with Uriel Archangel and then, finally, my silent, but intensive request to God to participate in this retreat… and when I gave up on it – since it was impossible for me to imagine how could I get the money for affording this experience – and confessed this to my beloved, a miracle happened and it suddenly became possible that I, myself …could also be there… in my first silent retreat for revealing the divine essence, the immortal Self ATMAN. Indeed, if I were to follow what my mind was telling me I never have had this chance, but a simple inner request from the heart was triggering what I consider a true miracle for me.
Considering the spiritual results I have personally experienced in this retreat, I have to admit that this spiritual retreat was relatively easy: already the trip itself felt like a light vacation, my first breaths on the Icelandic shore in a state of an adolescent’s joy and happiness, the funny moments in the bus with the familiar and new faces, Mihai’s lucid enthusiasm for the Icelandic scenery, the electronic toy helicopter I took care of on the way, the taste of the rich in minerals water and of the ashram’s bread and soup and the entire atmosphere of the Icelandic yoga school reawakened something very pure and joyful inside, which reminded me of the times I was 12 and had just discovered with full enthusiasm Chopin, buying tape after tape with his crystalline music.
Neither the quite strict program of 6.5 hours meditation, nor the rule of total silence were too difficult for me and the experiences I’ve had in the third day and in the last day of the retreat have showed me very clearly that it is possible… what E.Tolle, Maharishi, Yogananda or Poonja described in their books are attainable and easier to attain then I thought, and the focus on this high goal is giving by far much more joy and ecstasy than anything else the world can give. I just couldn’t believe how - in my ten years of practicing in this yoga school - I tried almost all the types of Yoga,… except for this one… all those stories about how difficult these meditations were, now they are, in my vision, just bedtime stories for kids …
“After the Iceland Silent Retreat a very curious and cunning reporter approached a participant in the camp, asking him the first question: ‘who am I talking to?’; the student’s amazed gaze was pondering for a moment on a spot somehow behind the reporter’s microphone, then the calm answer came with the ingenuity of a revelation: ‘to me’ ”- the second spiritual joke inspired to Mihai towards the end of the camp.
The famous question ‘who am I?’ from Ramana Maharishi’s self-inquiry technique bears almost no meaning for the reader of his books unless doubled by the practice of centering in the heart. The seven steps technique in which we were gradually introduced, during the meditation program, had on me the effects of several revelations…first of all because my ideas about the heart and the soul were so abstract and far from my personal experience. From the short lectures we were presented I understood that essentially the concept of the heart as the center of everything that exists is a genuinely practical concept: I remember many years ago in my room I had a red old armchair in which I took a break sometimes, simply following a need of my being to stop for a moment in the middle of the very agitated emotional life I had in that period. There was one time, I clearly recall, when I simply felt a state of bliss – experienced as profound peace – just by stopping and relaxing with the eyes closed sitting on this armchair… Indeed, this experience of mine was an authentic centering in the heart which I did without knowing anything at that time about yoga. So, it became clear for me that I’ve already had some special moments in my life when the centering in the heart was there for short moments, but to find a simple practical method to recall and have that state at will is almost like dreaming about the Aladdin’s wonderful lamp from the One Thousand and One Nights fairy tale… still, and this was my first extraordinary revelation, with the right method, the adequate conditions created and a perseverant practice, the state of being in the heart can be attained now, by almost anyone who truly aspires to it.
Practically, the crystal clear exposure of the seven steps meditation technique had the role of protecting me from various traps, but even in these privileged conditions, the very clear guidance and the unison of aspiration with the fellow spiritual aspirants in this retreat, I still had to pass through my own tests until getting the first results.
The room bathed in blue light: “…the heart is the king … it is the secret mirror of God inside of us …it makes possible that we can really have what we have and to become what we really are…beginning with the awakened heart we can start evolving and we can reach true spiritual accomplishments…” - from the theory in the retreat
It is still just sterile theory to talk about the heart and is like in one of the short movies with Poonja we watched in the retreat, about the one who talks and doesn’t know, while the one who knows, doesn’t talk … still the very reality of the tests I had, suggests that also the seconds of awareness of my individual heart - I’ve had in the camp - were nonetheless authentic. The blockages in the neck area, unblocked after the first two days, the difficulties with finding the relaxed meditation posture and the triggered physical pain until finding it, the fights with the fluctuations of my mind during the meditations and the kind of an incapacity to believe and pessimism about my capacity to be in the heart, as if forever imprisoned in the mind’s schemes, are some of the shades imprinted in the room where I found rest between meditations and re-read Bhairavastava (the Kashmir Shivaism’s masterpiece poem about being in the heart with the divine) with more and more thirst. From my window I could see young fir trees and, in the evenings, after the blue light bathed the table and the bed, the vision of the warm-houses awakened in me the memory of Roerich’s paintings depicting in the snowy scenery realm of Shambala.
Solheimar, under the snow in the fifth day of the retreat was the magical place I had a walk to visit the green-houses and leave in the snow storm all my melancholy about the lost moments of this life in which I was not in the heart…but far from the essential nectar of the ‘king of my being’, the spiritual heart. There, behind the glass of the green-houses I found my little tree with lively remembrance of the true experience of the man who came back from clinical death - the heart awakening essential story watched in the 2010 Costinesti summer yoga camp about the voyage to God’s heavenly realm of a man who found in a room, there, in God’s heaven the small tree representing the sum of the good deeds he did during his life time. This impressive moment of his story was the subject of my identification, while looking through the windows of the green house and choosing my own little plant…’my tree’.
And yes, in the third day I also had the grace of three seconds of centering in the heart continually and profoundly and the stunning effects are still amazing me: first of all I suddenly remembered in a new light some decisions I took not from the heart in the past, I saw the moment like from above, having a complete perspective… and as if burning that karma of ignorance about the hearts’ solutions, I found myself again in the middle of the warm flow of love which showed me the right solution; simultaneously with these clarifying recollections I felt an inner state of verticality as a renewal of all my masculine essence… reconfiguring my self-transfiguration to the highest extent and giving back to me the freshness of all my purest aspirations. What was really shockingly real and incredible was the speed of few seconds in which I found a renewed inner strength which I haven’t even slightly guessed it existed inside of me. Together with this integrating perspective and refreshed virility I also felt vaguely how is that state in which one knows everything, the past and the future, being centered in the axis of the present moment. After these astonishing states I started to gain an inner happiness which was increasing gradually until the end of the retreat culminating in the last day.
Ideal conditions for the ones aiming to the highest accomplishment on the ‘fast-lane’: NOW and HERE.
It is not any more a mere juicy spiritual saying for us (those participating in this retreat) the expression ‘here and now’. It’s became as practical this expression as the asana-s for a first year yoga student. As Mihai Stoian - our guide in this inner spiritual adventure – called this type of spiritual experience we’ve had: “the perpendicular spiritual practice”, is the one aiming straightly to the highest goal, without wandering in the almost endless stages on the horizontal plane, but taking the bold turning on the vertical axis, directly aiming towards the divine. It is ”a different quality of experience” as he puts it, and it can hardly be compared with anything else in the vast domain of possible horizontal spiritual practices. If, for instance on the tantric path one might have Tantra retreat 1 followed by a new theme, or new initiations in Tantra retreat 2 and so on until Tantra retreat ‘n’, the silent retreat for revealing the Self can only be repeated and continually remembered since it brings us back to the same divine axis within us, which is immobile, unchangeable and springing from the eternity of the very origins of the universe. These camps are analogically speaking like practicing alpinism to the highest peak on the most direct path, the shortest and most efficient side of the mountain.
Also Camelia’s perceptions about the divine entities of light guiding us from the invisible realms here in the camp were significantly highlighting that - what we’ve experienced in Solheimar this year - it was authentic and highly significant for our transformation.
Here I must admit that I’ve never imagined that this kind of retreat in the same space together with others can contain so much depth and authenticity. The rules of the camp clearly stated that we are supposed to be silent at all times and not to look to the others, but live inside of our own sphere as if we were alone in an individual retreat. For me these were relatively easy to be done by imagining that I am in God’s presence; so the only presence I have to take care of is God. And this way of acting brought good results for me…. Still, while living in the same room with my room mate some clarifications and purifications also appeared and I realized that they were not by coincidence catalyzed by my roommate’s presence: the funniest example to this effect was about his wake up alarm singing a song which was hunting me until the end of the camp; until, in the last night I had a releasing dream in which he was acting in a comedy triggering my strongest laughter in this life time …in a dream…thus any melancholic tendency was like burnt away in the fire of this brotherly communion through laughter.
A key element for remembering a special spiritual state, revealed here Mihai, is to recreate the same conditions in which that special state appeared for the first time…but what were the ideal conditions offered to us by Iceland?
The cool temperature which is excellent for meditation, the pure elements of nature specific to the subtle atmosphere of Iceland, the common aspiration of the spiritual group, and mostly and firstly the warm hearted hosting of the Icelandic yogis and here the gallery of angels taking care of us is enlarged with the volunteers who offered to organize the camp, administrate all the practical details and cook for us every day out of their immense generosity of the heart: especially Magdalena, Serafim and Natha Iceland volunteers, Adam and the others deserve all our gratefulness, since without their initiative and sacrifice these ideal conditions hadn’t been possible to be met.
The Satsang in Natha Iceland Reykjavik: protect your ‘candle light’ not only while meditating and being in a protective environment, but also while walking on the street in the springtime sunshine of the joyful states or the snow storm of the hard to control karmic events, be like those who manage this on and on in all the life situations even in the most intensive ones, the rare, spiritually liberated beings – ideas from the conclusive talk of the retreat.
For me in this spiritual retreat the difference between the astonishing third day’s glimpses of awareness on my heart’s depths and the camp’s final day personal success, is between the lucky luke’s unconscious lucky strike (the third day) and the consciously built up ability to maintain continually for a longer time the focus on the divine essence within. Now only for very few minutes and then to more minutes in a row while having continuity - breaking out of the few minutes short cycles - given by the presence of the silent witness perceived by me in the source of super human perseverance and steadiness in the focus.
The closing moments of the camp, the meditation of gratitude, sharing, the last snowy images around the pond with the colored fish, the taste of the fresh and crispy bread in the hall where smiling people are talking and joking about the weather in a detached way … and the underlying state of surrendering to God’s Will in all the details of our departure. Closing the door of the meditation building, returning the keys and looking from the left side at Solheimar – the home of the Sun, the already familiar holiday houses and the green-houses always bathed with light… the growing happiness rising like the Sun on the faces and silence accompanying the pause between two words… the fragility of our souls’ refined movements, breathing in unison with the yellow bus, crossing through the Icelandic scenery towards Reykjavik.
The Natha Iceland Yogacenter is the playground of the final stage of the inner adventure I wanted to depict.
Our loving and hospitable hosts preparing the Sunday evening Satsang with Mihai; beautifully arranged living room and yoga halls. An atmosphere of warm communication naturally starts to grow while waiting for Serafim’s intro words. All is unexpectedly unfolding and everyone’s curiosity about the Icelandic yogis and about us is fulfilled in a smart and funny way during the self-introductory round. A kind of a refined magic field of sharing is spread all around like in the heart to heart spiritual sharing of the best kind. Unexpected connections are opening new subjects from the topic of least importance of which year of yoga is one, to the silent retreat which is meeting here the Icelandic school’s students; then the questions are pointing more and more towards the now and here; from the highest essence of the national souls, the exceptional value of the meditations with the national soul to which one belongs; the Icelandic soul; Mihai’s answer to this question unveiling the exceptional creativity of the Icelandic soul in its contact with the primordial natural forces; the present-day situation of the creativity and how can it be integrated in the divine perspective; all these in a curiosity and affinity awakening manner of the great spiritual feasts in the end of a triumphant spiritual accomplishment.
The earth’s mountainous ribs are reflected in me like waves on a still lake, while gazing out of the plane’s little window and even the amazement in front of the white cloud’s stony realm is more silent in me than other times. The practice of the technique starts from the airport so that the noises don’t come so hurtfully towards me. Just the wish to be alone and meditate and the thought about the example with the ‘candle light’ - given in the retreat and representing the awakened heart towards the depths of the Divine Immortal Self ATMAN – to be taken care of in the storms of the daily life with all its unexpected turning points.
I wish to all of you to always manage to maintain the centering in the heart so profoundly that its bright light awakens completely not only your candle, but also others’ heart candle light. And I Thank to God, to Grieg, my spiritual guide, to Mihai, my spiritual teacher, Magdalena and Serafim, our caring mother and father in this retreat, the Icelandic yoga students and to all of you who participated, for your love and aspiration which altogether made possible, also for me, the very valuable spiritual experience of the 2011 silent retreat in Iceland,
- (Past events)
Archangels are elevated sublime entities of light. Their predominant frequency of vibration puts them in an intermediary level between God and the created world. Angels have many roles in the creation of God.
They are the unseen force, messengers of God, the link between God and His creation who make sure that things are going the way they should. All created things have their angel of God who is responsible for them.
There are angels for birth, angels for death, angels for a star, angels for a galaxy, angels for fire, angels for space, angels for a group of trees, angels for spring…
More then this, each human being has his/her own guardian angel which has been assigned to him by God as his personal angel, who is always near the human being and has the role to help the human being in all aspect of life. One important thing about angels, is that they are always there to help us, but they can do so only if we ask for their help.
In the archangels' week we take the time to become aware of the presence of the archaengels and their beneficial influence upon our life. It is a time to deepen our awareness about the angels and their presence, and to remember to ask for their help and support during the challenges of life, and in our spiritual growth. We are offered daily meditation, supported by our spiritual guide, with different angels, so we can get to know them better and establish a true connection with them.
All are invited to come to Natha Yogacenter to take part in the meditation, or even to meditate where ever they are in the time of the supported meditation and get to know the angels better.
Sunday, October 31st - 18.40 -19.30 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with Archangel Gabriel
Monday, November 1st - 18.40 -19.30 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with Archangel Uriel
Tuesday, November 2nd - 18.40 -19.30 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with Archangel Rafael
Wednesday, November 3rd - 18.40 -19.30 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with Archangel Michael
Thursday, November 4th - 18.40 -19.30 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with Archangel Zadakiel
Friday, November 5th - 17.40 -18.30 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with Archangel Metatron
Saturday, November 6th - 15.40-16.45 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with the Guardian Angel
Sunday, November 7th - 15.40-16.30 - presentation and meditation of spiritual communion with Archangel Michael
If you cannot come to NathaYoga Center you can also participate simultaneously at home.
By resonance with all the participants throughout the world you will have an easy unison with the Angels. Make yourself a comfortable place, disconnect the phone, light a few candles or incense sticks, whatever brings you into a relaxed, happy mood. Read the description of the Angels a few times and try to make yourself an as clear as possible vision of them. Sit down for meditation in a comfortable position or on a chair, relax your body, your emotions, your feelings and finally your mind. Listen to the inner silence. Feel deep inside yourself and remain, as much as possible, in this inner silence.
If you now call the angels from deep in your heart, you will have the possibility to feel them very fast. They are already patiently waiting for us...
(More information about the angels can be found in the web page www.angelsweek.com).
- (Various Topics)
Angels connect the human being to God.
Both saints and historical descriptions of humankind mention them. They are close to our hearts whenever we fervently ask for their help. These beings of light lovingly protect us in silence.
The word “angel” comes from the Greek „angelos”, meaning „messenger” or „herald”. Therefore angels are God’s messengers lighting our way Home and offering us His love and holy guidance, as Jesus’s apostles tell us.
The Bible contains many stories about angels. However they belong to the entire humankind and not to a single religion. All we have to do is receive them in our lives and open our hearts towards them. We all need their help, although we don’t always admit it. They are meant to guide and protect us, support our efforts towards perfection, in our daily life. They also help us become aware of things that stand in the way of our evolution as well as of things that give us the strength to surpass the difficulties and obstacles we face in our lives.
Two of the greatest thinkers of modern ages, Emanuel Swedenborg and Rudolf Steiner regarded angels not only from the religious but also form the human point of view. Rudolf Steiner perceived them as divine teachers helping people to evolve spiritually. He believed that Archangel Michael for instance, was the guiding angel of our times. A large part of his works describes the manner of communication with the angelic beings. One of them is using the representation of their faces. We have to amplify our faith and intuition in this respect. Thus we will be helped to reach a high spiritual level and perceive God’s divine game at the very core of reality.
Angels’ subtle messages are received through our right brain, which synthesizes the information received and turns it into images. It is that part of the brain that is best emulated through music, colors and contemplation. Together with the yogi methods of meditation and relaxation, the aesthetic emotion is of very much help for the so necessary harmony between the two sides of our brain. Hence they help us use our potential as human beings.
The Guardian angel
God’s love and compassion for His Creation is so big that he gave to each one of us a guardian angel. These angels help us to successfully overcome the lessons of life. For each one of us they are guides, protectors, inspirers and friends. Of course, according to each human being’s aspiration, the relationship with the guardian angel can be the most profound and intimate relationship, until finding the spiritual guide.
Our guardian angels are always beside us and we can ask for their help whenever we are in trouble. They are willing to help us, we just have to ask them to. The mission of our guardian angels is to accompany us, to inspire us and to give us spiritual impulses along our entire life.
To outline even more the role and extremely important help of the guardian angle, Christian tradition shows that in certain conditions (for example, when it is called fervently) the guardian angel can intervene rapidly and profoundly in our spiritual evolution; he can even obtain God’s Grace for our mistakes to be forgiven.
An extremely simple and efficient way, accessible to anyone, to open our heart to the divine guidance and protection of our guardian angel is the prayer "My little angel":
"Angel of God, you are my guardian
Spread your light over me tonight.
Lead me, guard me and advise me.
I have been given to you through
The mercy and care of God.
Angel, my little angel,
Pray to God for my little soul
And wherever I am, be around me.
From today till night until I die.
I am small, you make me big
I am weak, you make me strong.
And be with me everywhere
And keep me away from all bad things
And take good care of me. Amen."
The Guardian Angel helps each one of us to overcome the different inferior tendencies or deviations from our spiritual path that we still face. He helps us transform our entire life into good. Therefore, becoming aware of the connection with the guardian angel can be the first step towards God that the human being makes.
- (Legal and Media Cases)
HOW AN IDEAL TURNED INTO A COURTCASE
By Sahajananda Porslund
This article serves to give the reader the background story about Bhoga. It also serves partly as an answer to the accusations against Natha yogacenter published on the site www.bhoga.dk.
Content of article
The opinions on the website www.bhoga.dk about the ownership and future plans for Bhoga, as well as the serious accusations about Mihai Stoian and other teachers from Natha Yogacenter, are not shared by the involved parts and sideline witnesses to the Bhoga story. Going through the documents and official protocols of Bhoga Ashram and of the Bhoga court case, and by interviewing people from the Bhoga community and from Natha Yogacenter, Natha.net offers here a coherent overview of the past years events and surprising development in the spiritual community, Bhoga Ashram.
It started as a minor conflict between one of the members of the community, Kim Schmock, and the community living there. The conflict scaled up and the case went to court where Kim Schmock who left the community claimed his right to throw out the other inhabitants there and sell the farm to a third part. Kim Schmock wants it to appear as if he is the rightful owner and initiator of Bhoga, who was unfairly treated by the community and who is now claiming his fair right. A crusade against "injustice" caused towards him. But the community itself and people connected to the place thinks otherwise and give us a quite different story about harassment and manipulation damaging the future of a genuine spiritual initiative.
2. A sacred space
By comparing photos taken 6 years ago before the spiritual community Bhoga Ashram bought the place and how the place looks now, it is clear that many people have worked hard to make the place what it is today. Bhoga is an ashram. An ashram can be compared to an intentional community formed primarily for spiritual upliftment of its members, ie a sacred space for those seeking to discover their inner spiritual nature in an environment which facilitates this search.
Bhoga Ashram today hosts a dynamic spiritual community of several yoga teachers from Natha Yogacenter, two professional musicians educated in Rythmic music conservatory in Copenhagen, a Swedish moviemaker graduated from the Danish Film Academy, the editorial staff of the newsmagazine Logos, the daily manager of a teahouse in Copenhagen and several other visitors working on different other creative projects in the contemplative surroundings of Bhoga Ashram. I arrive in the middle of the annual summer camps held in Bhoga Ashram by Natha yogacenter. The impression from the article “Nathas True Face” published on www.bhoga.dk of a place squattered by a mad isolated sect barricading the entire place is already dissolved in the warm summer sun, as I am welcomed by several of the members of the community with warm greetings and a wonderful vegetarian meal. Around the buildings I find yoga teachers teaching yoga to the camp participants in the garden, one is mowing the lawn around the tents on the field together with two playing kids. From the main house I hear loud laughter – ‘can savage squatters really laugh that hard’, I am catching myself thinking – and through the door to the big kitchen I find a group of younger people cutting vegetables listening to the lecture from the conference-hall next door through the speakers.
My first impression of Bhoga ashram was not at all in alignment with the information published on www.bhoga.dk. How come? I decided on further investigation within the community itself, since bhoga.dk definitely did not give a complete picture of the situation. Actually the version of the Bhoga Case ‘Nathas true face’ written and published by Kim Schmock on bhoga.dk who left the community, suddenly appeared extremely subjective and did not seem to appreciate the truth at all. In fact it was just 3 short lines claiming Bhoga to be squattered by Natha Yogacenter and a lot of serious accusations and calumnies against ‘the squatters’.
According to the members of the community Bhoga Ashram they are in these days facing a case in court against one mans clever attempt to destroy the community and its activities and gain the profit on the sale of a property which never belonged to him and never was financed by him. Bhoga was bought at a price of 2.1 million kroner. As current house prices are today, Bhoga could easily be sold for 6 million kroners. This gives Kim Schmock a profit of around 4 million kroner not to mention the amount already payed down by people living in Bhoga through the times believing that their rent money was paying down the loans of a place believed to be Natha Yogacenters. As Bhogas credit institute loans are set up at the moment there is an annual downpayment of the original loan of 2.1 million of around 100.000 a year. This means that in rent these people have payed down 600.000 kroner of the original price (subtracting Kims own rentpayment). KIM STANDS TO GAIN A POSSIBLE PROFIT OF 4.6 MILLION KRONERS based on the work of a whole community in the course of many years! As we unfolded the different chapters of the Bhoga Case, it turned out to be the story about a community where heartful trust and team spirit is the fundamental level of communication and cooperation, and how one member of the community suddenly turned his back and went from loyal and trusted over suspicious and greedy to manipulative and irresponsible.
4. Buying the ashram The intention declaration
In the summer of 2000 a dozen spiritual seekers were looking for the same thing: A spiritual community inspired by the teachings in yoga, tantra and meditation from Natha Yogacenter. Among these people were Kim Schmock and Amrita Hansen. They had met in a small yoga camp in a summerhouse on Møn, where among others Kim Schmock together with his girlfriend Helle Grønhøj and Amrita Hansen were participating. What they did not know at that time was that they only few months later were going to buy a old farm on the countryside of Vejby together in order to fulfill their apparently common dream.
Amrita Hansen and Kim Schmock took the first initiative visiting Aadyssegaard (The name of the farm before it became "Bhoga") in Vejby later the same summer. According to Amrita Hansen they were all very enthusiastic, especially Kim and Helle: “Kim presented to us, that he wanted to buy the farm for the sake of creating a place, where there would be the same spirit and the same atmosphere all year round, as the one they had experienced on Møn. Especially Helle was very enthusiastic and said: ‘One should be together like this all the time and not just in one camp once a year’. Both Kim and Helle were very open, warm and helpful people.”
In October 2000 Kim Schmock put forth the initial downpayment necessary to buy Bhoga, signed the ownership contract and started renovating the wrecked old farm together with his new friends and colleagues of the community who decided to move there immediately, determined to realize their common dream. It was clear for everybody within the community that the place was going to belong to the community, even though the first primary payment and the loan for buying the place were established by Kim Schmock. The whole project and the renovation of the place was based on the common spiritual idea of creating a community based on the teachings of Natha Yogacenter, and furthermore to offer the place once it had been built up as a cultural house organised by Natha Yogacenter full of creative and spiritual activities for the local society.
The clear agreement within the community and confirmed in the protocols of many house meetings was therefore that Bhoga was belonging to the community and that Kim Schmock was only the generous cashier for managing the financial fuel for starting up the project. Already in November 2000 all the present members of the Bhoga community signed an Intention Declaration including Kim Schmock. The original and signed declaration was archived in Kim Schmocks personal papers and was not available for our investigation, but an electronic copy of the intention declaration remained in Natha Yogacenters archive dated and last modified on 15th of November 2000. It goes as follows:
Declaration of intent of 15. november 2000
This declaration is binding
The signers of this declaration form the Ådyssegård Asramcommunity, which, until further notice, takes responsability for building the asram. At decisions related to the building, NATHAs or MISAs leader has right to veto.
The signers bind themselves to the following:
1. To transform Ådyssegården Møngevej 11, Vejby, into a spiritual development- and course-center, with ecologically sustainable facilities.
2. To leave the leading and the economical responsability concerning Ådysse-gården to NATHA or its mother-organisation MISA, after the Ådyssegård is free of debt.
3. That Ådyssegården pays back it present owner, Kim Schmock, his expense for the downpayment at the purchase of the property (kr. 130.000,-), which has to be payed back before the leaving over to NATHA/ MISA. That all economical duties and obligations are removed from Kim Schmock and Helle Grønhøj
4. To facilitate these transactions through the formal forming of a self-owning trust (”fond”) under the official leadership of NATHA or MISA, as soon as possible.
The signers understand, acknowledge and bind themselves to the following:
5. To adopt the spiritual lifestyle according to NATHAs system, and to practice yoga in the measure given in the house rules.
6. To contribute to the building of the development- and course-center with labour or amounts that equals the value of the labour, in the measure given in the house rules.
7. That an individuals moving in or out can be decided by NATHAs or finally by MISAs leader.
8. At moving in, to contribute to the center by giving it first priority in the daily life.
9. At moving in, to pay the settled rent for the next 6 months. After this there is a 3 months time limit.
On the house meeting 3rd of April 2001 Kim Schmock officially announces that: “Kim and Helle already now want to begin the make over of the farm, so Kim no longer is registered as owner and guarantor, but is free from this. Kim, Christine Maria and other interested and relevant persons will form a committee, where we investigate the possibilities.”
5. The making of the ashram
Indeed a generous attitude, which in fact just reflects the same generosity from all the people working to establish the retreat centre. Many people who either studied or sympathized with the teachings of Natha Yogacenter gathered in the weekends to help their friends to make this wonderful initiative come through. “I was part of a men’s group in Natha Yogacenter and every Saturday morning we went to Bhoga to help the initiating renovation project. It was an amazing atmosphere of doing something together and it seemed just like what the school needed in order to create a physical location where we together could develop projects connected to the school. For example yoga camps, silent retreats, music festivals et cetera. Of course I never doubted that the place belonged to Natha Yogacenter, since it was publicly expressed among all the ones in charge in that time, including Kim”, says Martin Svensson. People even came all the way from Israel in order to participate in the yearly summer camps and in the necessary preparations: “I came together with two of my friends from Israel for the camp. We worked here for more than one month 8-10 hours pr day even with hard physical work. I was sure this placed belonged to Natha Yogacenter already, and even though I am a little naive, in this case I heard Kim express it clearly like that. Now I really don’t know what to say, but I am surprised how anyone can be so blinded by money or whatever might be his motivation for trying to destroy our wonderful community,” says Veredit Zeithun who used to live in Bhoga Ashram.
It did not take long before the community on the farm together decided to host the first big yoga camp held by Natha Yogacenter. In the beginning of 2001 before the first camp it was clear that the community met their first big challenge. Organizing a summer camp for 200 people on Ådyssegaard was definitely not an easy task considering the present conditions. And at the same time the community decided on a house meeting with the support of all members, to become an official ashram in alignment with the spiritual teachings of Natha Yogacenter, and furthermore to change the official name of the place to Bhoga Ashram. Amrita Hansen who was the first ashram leader in Bhoga and who organized the first summer camp writes in her deposition about the Bhoga Case: “When we had working weekends I helped where it was needed. Often I cooked food for all the people who came. Sometimes more than 20 people came. Mikael Eriksson instructed in how to build […] Kim borrowed us all his tools and he also had his own work team fixing all the things, which he would not let anybody borrow his special tools to fix.
None of us, none of all those people coming and working voluntary in their weekends and long afternoons, ever doubted that the farm belonged to ‘us’, meaning the group of people, who were practicing yoga according to the teachings of the same spiritual school, Natha Yogacenter. None of us doubted that Natha Yogacenter was going to own the place, when the time was ripe for this – and that was why all these people came and helped with voluntary work. I would never have called all these people, or worked that hard for the place, if I have had the slightest suspicion that Kim one day would declare it all to be his private property. I would have been embarrassed to ask my friends to work for free, so that a private person could take economical advantage of it.”
The people living in Bhoga Ashram were all in their first years of their yoga/studies and therefore Amrita Hansen moved in, in order to help the community in the right direction and more urgently to help organizing the soon to come summer camp: “I moved into Bhoga Ashram, Møngevej 11, 3210 Vejby on the 1st of April 2000 after agreement with the people living there, among them Kim Schmock. I moved in as ‘ashram leader’ first having secured myself, that everybody wanted the place to become a real ashram.” Just before that on the 26th of March 2001 Kim Schmock had signed a contract, declaring that in case he resigns from the Bhoga project, he will pass over the farm to the community living there: “The undersigned hereby guarantees, that if I do not wish to live an ashram life and hand over the leadership of the ashram, to the leader chosen by Grieg (right now Christine Maria Hansen), then I will hand over the farm to the people in the Ashram (Natha) and move out in the best possible harmonious way.” Signed by Kim Schmock 26/03/01.
Signed by Kim Schmock 26/03/01
6. The ownership: Kims proposed donation
Beside the verbal confirmations I was amazed as a reporter to see a written contract in such a dispute, and I had to ask myself: What makes a single member of a community suddenly claim the rights for a place which he 5 years before obviously resigned all ownership from in a written piece of paper handed over to the official protocol of the community?
As if this should not be evidence enough to confirm the original intention of Kim Schmock, as a loyal, trustworthy and responsible member of the community, whose only official and well-known idea about the place was, that it belonged to the community and was dedicated to integrate the teachings of Natha yogacenter in a living spiritual community. Only 2 months later immediately after a successful summer camp Kim according to several witnesses publicly announced his gratitude for the teachings of the school and his intentions even ‘to donate’ his downpayment for buying the farm to Natha. The entire community managed to transform an abandoned farm into a quiet well functioning and well-facilitated camp-site, Kim Schmock send a signed letter to Gregorian Bivolaru, the founder of Natha Yogacenter and the spiritual mentor of many of the students there, explaining certain aspects about the economy of Bhoga Ashram. Again in this letter he declares that his ownership of the place is pure formality and indeed the place belongs to the community: “I am not able to finance further development of Bhoga, but I got an idea. If I received the 160.000 kr back now, I will donate the whole amount to Bhoga Ashram as a start capital for making the facilities needed.” The official process for handing over the legal property papers of Bhoga to Natha unfortunately did never happen. Because in fact Kim was himself in charged of the economy of both Bhoga and Natha and for some reason never started this process.
7. What the others did not know…
But still we have not yet seen why Kim turned his back on the community 5 years later. What happened and is there any footprints leading us back to when it actually happened?
According to Amrita Hansen, ashram leader in Bhoga at that time there was already a split in the mind of Kim Schmock from the beginning: “Kim was in this way ‘depending’ on that people from Natha Yogacenter were interested in the project for two obvious reasons: The first was that he and Helle obviously could not create a spiritual community by themselves. They needed somebody to move in and to do it together with, somebody who had more experience than themselves. The other reason was that Kim could not afford to pay for all the expenses for maintaining the place. He was all the time very careful to secure himself: To make sure enough people would move in and to make them oblige for a long enough period, in order to make sure he would not suddenly risk his initiative and go bankrupt. As a matter of fact Kim all the time showed himself as a person with a good sense for his own economy.”
So Kim Schmock not only wanted a spiritual community, but also a “place with horses for him and his girlfriend Helle”, as Amrita Hansen writes in her witness deposition about Bhoga. But what was most important: The community or his own romantic dream? In fact maybe Kim just wanted “a place with horses” where he and his girlfriend could enjoy their according to Amrita Hansen quite expensive lifestyle. But is it morally correct to pretend in front of a community of around 10 people and not to mention in front of a whole school of hundreds of people, contributing for 6 years with free labour, that you are working for their project, when in fact you are only dreaming about horses? Nonetheless many facts are showing us that this is the reality.
8. The economical set up
Already from the beginning Kim declared in several house meetings – as it is found in the house meeting summaries - and confirmed by the ashram leader at that time Amrita Hansen, that the economical responsibility belonged to the community and the members of Natha Yogacenter and not to him personally. After one year delay from the first initiative the community decided in the spring 2002 to make an Aps (Anpartsselskab) which should function as a link in the passing over of the property from Kim to Natha Yogacenter. Again Kim took the task on behalf of the community, since he was the most experienced in financial matters, to make an aps with himself as the director, in order to make the agreed transaction with monthly shares handing over the property to the members of Natha Yogacenter.
A lease was therefore signed by Kim Schmock as the owner of Bhoga Aps and Mihai Stoian as the newly chosen coordinator of Natha Yogacenter. In “The true face of Natha” published on Kim Schmocks homepage, it is mentioned that Kim did not like Mihai Stoian very much. The facts are suggesting us that they in fact had a very close connection and friendship for many years: In the same period as Mihai Stoian took over the coordination of Natha Yogacenters teaching department Kim Schmock became an important character in the administration and economy of Natha Yogacenter taking many important tasks and new initiatives having consulted the board, where Mihai Stoian also was present as manager of the yoga teachers.
According to Amrita Hansen and Celestine Andersen, Kim was member of the board of Natha Yogacenter, who was administrating all the agreed decisions on the general assemblies of Natha Yogacenter. “Kim was for a period of 8 months accountant for both Natha Yogacenter and Bhoga Ashram. After a while we trusted his reliability so much, that only later we discovered that he had made several huge transactions of many thousand kroner from the account of Natha Yogacenter to cover the expenses of Bhoga Ashram, who seemed to had run out of hand“, says Amrita Hansen who kept the protocols of the board meetings.
9. Taking personal advantage
So a lease between Bhoga Aps and Natha was made as a preliminary step in order to make the official transfer of the property. Instead Kim abused it to claim the property for his own and throw out Natha. A trusted man indeed, Kim Schmock, so trustworthy that the board of Natha Yogacenter kept their hands on the heart for almost 8 months while Kim constantly was talking about a new amazing payment system he was claiming to set up for Natha Yogacenter, while in fact instead of transferring the promised shares of Bhoga Aps to Natha Yogacenter, he was paying all the bills for maintaining and improving the facilities of the farm by drying out Natha Yogacenter’s account.
“The bills from Bhoga added a deficit to Natha Yogacenter of approximately 100.000 kr in the first 6 months of 2004. It was difficult for Natha Yogacenter to pay the house rent and since Kim did not make any budgets for Bhoga, but only passed on bills, a majority of the committee decided to renounce the engagement, and also the lease.” Says Amrita Hansen
The cancellation of the lease was done verbally at the small assembly there, since as Amrita Hansen underlines: “Verbal agreements are like written agreements. The atmosphere between us was very friendly and nobody would believe, that anybody would try to take advantage of a silly contract which was only a formality. Now we know that we were a little naïve and that one wrong signature risks destroying 6 years of efforts and great achievements, because of an irresponsible and corrupted economical set up of one man.”
Now Kim abused the contract to claim that Natha was only tenants in Bhoga and even bad tenants not paying their rent! In fact he was hiding that Natha was paying all the costs including the monthly mortgage and also veiled the official agreement about transferring the formal papers for the property to Natha. Mihai Stoian explains that the real reason for the verbal cancellation of the lease was to make Bhoga Ashram become an economical independent branch of Natha Yogacenter: “We made it clear that together with the cancellation of the contract, the members of community living there now had to administrate the place themselves financially and practically. This procedure was agreed in order to make the people there more responsible for the place and not just depend on constant economical support from the main center in Copenhagen and donations of private persons.”
10. Indications of fraud
But this did not solve all the problems for the committee of Natha Yogacenter. In fact Kim Schmock had just postponed the attainment of a proper overview of the economy and at the same time the board member who partly took over Kims tasks, discovered something even more alarming: “After looking through the papers I discovered that the promised transfer of Bhoga Aps to the members of Natha Yogacenter, which Kim was responsible for he had not even begun!”
Mihai Stoian underlines the fact that Bhoga Ashram was “even supported by Natha Yogacenter by letting all the income for the yoga courses and the economical successful yoga camps kept there, contribute to the further development of the facilities there.”
11. Opposing the community
After a while another sign occurred showing Kim Schmocks inner dilemma between supporting and being loyal to the initial foundation of Bhoga Ashram, as a spiritual community, and fulfilling his personal dreams and desires. He started to show an opposing attitude to the spiritual program of the ashram, consisting in daily common meditations. Instead talking or loud movie watching could be heard from his room. ”Kim would do a lot of things for Helle and sometimes I felt, that it was mostly for the sake of Helle, he had bought the farm and to create the community she had always dreamt about. He started to be not so happy to oblige himself for practicing yoga and meditation or participating in the common activities, which was the main purpose of the community. I have had long discussions with him about the lack of realism in his idea about taking partial responsibility for such a big project, when he did not really want to be part of it himself”, says Amrita Hansen.
According to Stine Andersen: “ Kim also started to oppose against the future plans of Bhoga Ashram as a place for a spiritual community, wanting to lead things in his own direction, which was clearly not the initial agreement nor the present opinion by the majority of the people in the community, which was tired of spiritual compromises from Kim.” [Note: According to Stine Andersen, Mihai Stoian had announced the community some suggestions for turning the place into a more harmonious ashram.]
Lets sum up the situation from here: Did Kim really plan all this on forehand, and only pretended that he would hand over the farm later, so that a large community of people was working for him? Taking the responsibility of the economy of Natha Yogacenter and financing his ’own place’ with the funds of a spiritual school, leading all the involved parts behind the light and blocking the agreed transfer of the shares of Bhoga Aps to the community? What would make a man do something like that: Was he just extremely clever and foresighted calculating all to his own economical interest as a cold hearted businessman or did it happen gradually a long the way? At least one thing is clear: While the rest of the community was arranging summer camps and renovating the facilities, Kim was keeping meetings with clever lawyers and his auditor securing his personal interest in the property.
After several disagreements where Kim was in conflict with the board decisions the final break came in July 2005. After the board had cancelled one of his personal projects in Bhoga, Kim himself realized that it could not continue like this. On the 26th of July 2005 Kim writes a letter to the people in the community announcing his resignation: “Dear Bhogaists, after considering the consequences for me accepting Mihai´s suggestion “how to turn Bhoga into an Ashram”, I have decided it is time for me to leave Bhoga.” In the same letter he also mentions a reason: That he does not feel competent enough to go through with the project: “[…] I have to move from this position, not to be an obstacle for further development of Bhoga – I would only be able to keep it ‘as a nice place to be’.“ Kim even specifies the economical conditions for the make over in the letter: “The basic fact is that someone else must take the financial responsibility for Bhoga. The price of Bhoga will be what I have invested in Bhoga. This I think is very fair, considering the price of Bhoga has increased since I bought it. I have asked my accountant to a make a statement. […] May God and all his angels be with you for now and eternity.”
13. Buying your own farm, if only you knew the price!
For sure the community needed this blessing to resist what Kim was going to pull them all through the next year. From the 26th of July 2005 starts a long series of changing offers for the passing over of Bhoga Aps owned by Kim Schmock to Natha Yogacenter alias the community in Bhoga Ashram. Kim simply seemed to be taken by one clever idea after the other completely forgetting his initial verbally and signed promises to a whole community, thus leading himself astray both juridical and morally. From the initial agreed 160.000 kr in 2001 which was his actual down payment and contribution to the place, Kim Schmock consulted by his for many years accountant Leif Munck on the 26th of July comes up with 426.000 kr being “how much money I had invested in Bhoga.”, writes Kim in an email to Mihai Stoian, adding maybe with slightly bad conscience that, “I don’t think this is correct, it must be much less”, and “you pay me back my investment, and you can sell it afterwards if you want to take the profit, or you continue the development of Bhoga.” If the situation for the community so far had been tolerable and acceptable, from now on it turned absurd: “The same day as the deadline for the down payment of 426.000 kr to Kim, he cancelled the offer exactly as we were on the way to the bank to transfer the money.” Says Stine Andersen, ashram leader in Bhoga, and adds with a smile “At least he started to be honest about his real intentions.” During the next 3 months Kim Schmock advised by his accountant Leif Munck and his lawyer Henrik Hornslet is constantly changing the consistency of the offer for the make over. The 10th of January 2006 the community Bhoga Ashram on Møngevej 11 receives a final sales offer which “is not subject for further negotiation” on 3000.000 kroner. The community of course did not agree to buy their own farm, once again, and this time for a price which was even higher because of the increased market prices and the many improvements of the facilities on the farm, which they had made themselves and which Natha Yogacenter had paid for.
Actually Kim was asking them to pay a second time for their hard efforts to build up the place, since the only reduction made in the sale-offer was for some of the materials used for the renovation-project (around 600.000 kr).
Instead of moving out within 3 months as he promised in the signed letter, Kim at the same time started a serious harassment of the community there. “He tried to throw us out several times. Putting notes on the doors and ridiculous house rules like ‘no access to the public areas after 22.00’. He put locks on our rooms and made threats of physical violence and about going to the newspapers with the story, which was even more absurd, since we were the ones being harassed! He even stole the common moneybox with 30.000 kr from the summer camps in it,” says Stine Andersen ashram leader and spokesman of Bhoga Ashram.
Also the members of the board in Natha Yogacenter was shocked by the situation: “Theoretically we have worked for Natha Yogacenter and the promotion of a genuine spiritual school. In reality it looks like all our effort will end up in the pocket of a single person with a very immoral and even criminal attitude. Considering official sale numbers plus the enormous tax advantages, which he put at his own disposition for his other company KSED, it is clear that for him this project ended up being pure business. I still hope and believe that he got tempted a long the way; but its very hard to see a person you trusted with all you stand for going so corrupted and stabbing all his old friends and colleagues in the back,” says a concerned member of the board.
The case continues and Kim apparently does not stop the harassment of the community: “Three times he called the fire department and another official faculty of Helsinge Kommune in order to stop the annual summer camps, which are going on at the moment. Thank God that the chief of the fire department recognized what this guy what up to. Last night he came again and cut our big street sign for the second time. He is without any common sense and obviously considers us as his enemy number one. What can we do, now we are guarding the new sign every night hoping that he will not go into more damaging harassments,” says Andronicus Torp, one organizer of the summer camps in Bhoga. This is the background of the Bhoga case. To read more about the different court proceedings that are currently taking place we refer to the section called "courtcases" (See link in menu).
It is a matter of principle for us not to let a cynical businessman get away with such a damaging attack on a spiritual school and its visions. We are responsible for many hundreds of students all over the country and we have a lot to live up to”, says Amrita Hansen who is administrating the case for the community and the members of Natha Yogacenter.16. Serious accusations, but no proofs
Amrita Hansen is here also referring to the very serious accusations especially against the coordinating teacher in Natha Yogacenter Mihai Stoian, who was Kim Schmocks yoga teacher for more than 4 years. Some accusations which might have very serious juridical consequences for Kim, if Natha Yogacenter starts an injury-case against him. About the accusations, Mihai Stoians first comment was: “I am amazed. It seems he did not want to learn what I was teaching him. Constantly he refused to learn from the tasks and responsibility he was offered. Of course the accusations against me and the school are absolutely without any ground in reality. Being the spiritual leader of a big school it’s natural that all the frustrations of people are projected on me. Furthermore it is improper discussing my personal life, after he has been lying for years in front of hundreds of people.”
We found it very difficult to comprehend how an article naming the truth in its title can present a story and a long list of accusation without any documentation. Not a single quotation from any involved in the case or other kinds of documentation is published and only three lines about the Bhoga Case itself. Lets take one of the more serious examples from “The true face of Natha”: After the accusations in the Romanian medias about the famous yoga teacher Gregorian Bivolaru was proven inconsistent and false and nothing but a huge media-scam by the Supreme court of Sweden in Stockholm – an important decision shaking radically the entire juridical system in Romania – Kim Schmock brings the same accusations in his article. He did this even after the Supreme court in Sweden gave asylum to Gregorian Bivolaru. Does Kim Schmock not recognize the judgment of the Supreme court? “The article on www.bhoga.dk looks more and more like a last desperate attempt to turn the case into his own favor. I am very sorry for him and that he turned so destructive. Luckily he is now trying not only to destroy his old friends, but also his own chances for having the least reliability in court,” ends Amrita, spokeswoman of Natha Yogacenter.
We sincerely hope that Kim Schmock will end this pattern of destruction and open himself to engaging in a dialogue with his old friends, so a case which has lasted for so long will find a fair conclusion.