not all who wander are lost.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Om Shanti, Ravi Ravindra.

Dr. Ravi Ravindra

While in Ojai, CA for the Crib yoga retreat, I was lucky enough to spend a few hours listening to Dr. Ravi Ravindra. We discussed a little of this and a little of that, but mostly focused on the Bhagavad Gita. The Bhagavad Gita is the eternal message of spiritual wisdom from ancient India. The word Gita means song and the word Bhagavad means God, often the Bhagavad Gita is called the Song of God. It reveals the essence of all spiritual knowledge: accurate, fundamental knowledge about God, the ultimate truth, creation, birth and death, the results of actions, the eternal soul, liberation, and the purpose as well as the goal of human existence. It has been studied and revered by the likes of: Albert Einstein, Mahatma Gandhi, Dr.Albert Schweitzer, Herman Hesse, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Aldous Huxley, Rudolph Steiner and Nikola Tesla.

Ravi is the kind of person that radiates kindness, wisdom and compassion. He speaks softly with his Indian accent, casually discussing some of the most intense and serious subjects out there: life...and death. I scribbled notes down for three hours, and thought that I'd share them with you. I'm looking forward to catching him again in the upcoming weeks in NYC {I've listed dates/places below for those of you interested, trust won't be disappointed}.

Apologies if this is a bit scattered...the discussion was here, there and everywhere...

  1. Ravi began the lecture with the sentence "120 million will die in the next year." FUCK, I thought! Is there going to be a plague? Can this guy see the future?! Well, in reality - that is how many people in the world will die: whether it be murder, natural disaster, car accident..whatever. He continues {and please keep in mind that this intelligent serious man also has a great sense of humor} "We are on a large conveyor belt. Self-importance? HA. And you know what - 120 million will die, yes, but just as many - if not more, will be born." Freedom from myself. From the impression that I'm the center of it all. Ego. Freedom from self-occupation.

  2. DHARMA. Dharma is the main concern of Krishna. Dharma- has several meanings. Religion? No. Dharma means regards SOCIAL ORDER. Responsibility. Obligation. Duty. The FOUNDATION. Dharma is the order of the Universe - the foundation of the cosmos. Individual Dharma - maintain myself. Dharma is the maintenance of order. Myself, Family, Community, Planet. Various levels of Dharma. Dharma cannot be maintained without Yoga - otherwise its just "a good idea."

  3. "Yoke": something that connects. Connecting the body with the cosmic soul.

    • Connection with higher levels is not possible without SACRIFICE.
    • SACRIFICE - "to make SACRED" *not to get rid of something, but to make sacred.
    • Yajna = exchange of energies between different lives. Become unattached. Requires sacrificing myself - my attachment to me, me, me.
    We can be freed of self-occupation - so then the ego of yourself can become an instrument for something higher. This is YAJNA.
    • YAJNA: the navel of the cosmos, from which everything turns.

    "The problem cannot be solved from where it originates" - Albert Einstein

  4. In the Gita, Krishna defines YOGA:

    • You cannot in fact become a Yogi, until you've become free of what philosophers + scriptures have said + will say. "For one who sees directly, the scripture ceases to be of authority."
    • A Yogi is one who leaves all actions initiated by himself.
    • There are those who try to keep the tradition, and then there are those that wish to fulfill it.
    • In any action, the real shell is Yoga.
    • "Yoga is breaking the bond with suffering." -Gita
    • "One is considered the best Yogi who regards every being like oneself - who can feel the pain + pleasures of others as well as his own." - Gita

  5. Spiritual Practice:
    **When one moves from REACTION, to RESPONSE, and from RESPONSE to INACTION.

    Everything in us reacts. In general, human beings don't live the way we should, or could.

    "Non-attachment" is NOT indifference. To be indifferent is a sin against the holy spirit. Impartial as opposed to indifferent.

    One needs to acknowledge suffering - and direct the perception of that to be free.

  6. "SELF":
    • to see "the Self" is identical to see "the divine"
    • the deepest Self, is the same as the highest divinity
    • Gita, 29:Chp6 "A yogi sees the Self in everyone, and everyone in the Self."

  7. Nature of the Motive:
    • "It is not the nature of the action that makes something sacred - its the nature of the ACTOR that makes something sacred."
    • Yoga is not concerned with this action or that action- its concerned with the actor.
    • It's easy to fool oneself - so its important to have a Guru {whether that be a person or book, etc} for guidance.

"Discoveries...are not so, predictable."

"If you get too occupied with the weeds - you forget to enjoy the flowers.
If you focus so much on suffering, you miss the rest."

- Ravi Ravindra

Ravindra will give a Lecture and Two Workshops
the Open Center in New York
22 East 30th Street, New York, NY 10016
(212) 219-2527

  • “Journey Toward Oneness: The Quest for Unitive Consciousness in the Great Spiritual Traditions”, will be on Friday, November 19, 2010, at 7:30 p.m.

Two workshops will be on Saturday, November 20, 2010

  • “The Teachings of Christ in the Light of Indian Mysticism”
  • “The Yoga Sutras: An Eightfold Path to Spiritual Transformation”

1 comment:

  1. great notes! i will be posting the video of his talk any moment. xoxokira