Today is International Peace Day. May be a bit late to write on this. Attended a demo session of Heartfulness meditation at ICC Doha (that we do every year). On and off I do the heartfulness kind of meditation wherein we say we meditate from our heart. This kind of meditation is different from other typical Hindu meditation techniques that focus on progression of the seven Chakras. Meditation is essentially Om Mantra vibration for me which is why I am unable to come to terms with Heartfulness. Also, there is always a conscious attempt by many groups, in my opinion, to delink anything basically and intrinsically Hindu and make it universal. Yoga is compromised and even in the Surya Namaskar (sun salutation) Om mantra is eliminated. But if you eliminate the Om, how can it continue to be the authentic Surya Namaskar. In any case, most Yoga stretches are patented by Americans who have had nothing to do with Yoga or Meditation. There are two kinds of existence as per Hindu Dharma: Yoga and Bhoga. Yoga is renunciation essentially for both Hindus and Buddhists (and Jains) which means detachment to prepare yourself for the ultimate Enlightenment or Nirvana (self consciousness or self awareness). Bhoga is voraciously materialistic. The American or western practice of Yoga is without a soul that way – because they have killed the Yogic aspect of the fitness regime where body and soul merge with discipline. Yogic exercises in the west are mostly bhogic that they even have beer Yoga, Yoga with goats etc – which shows how least they grasp the elements of Yoga and how ignorant and disrespectful they are about something that is too very profound and disciplined way of life. Meditation is the other branch of Yoga like the Mudras. Now we have even the Transcendental mediation and Kundalini awakening selling like hotcakes; there are crash courses on Chakra progression and on Kundalini for sale. Which is why I have developed such a distaste for any kind of meditation that disassociates itself consciously, purposely from Hindu Dharma. Is that want you need to market a philosophy to worldwide seekers?
Meditation was mentioned as a tool to achieve peace both internal and external. Someone who spoke said what gave him peace was social service to the community. To those like my husband, work is worship as a friend stated the obvious truth. Peace to this kind comes from discharging their responsibility to such an impeccable perfection and contributing to realizable productivity.
As for as I am concerned, we all have our schools of thought that we adhere to. Hindu dharma has six clear cut philosophies to achieve the internal peace and I am for pursuing one of the six folded path. Sorry, I have no appetite for meditation, and if it does have to be, it will be the Om Mantra chanting for meditation for me. Now, that is the original meditation. No harm in entertaining, contemplating the various options but I guess, Hindus must eschew meditation techniques and yogic methods that try to misinterpret the Hindu practices and try to make them non communal. It is true yoga need not have to be communal, meditation need not have to be communal, but neither then must they be sold commercial. If you have to pay for them, then they may as well be patented. Yoga is not about the mere body. It is that which unites the body with the soul and takes you to the the next step of self awareness. It gives you mind control. Indian govt missed patenting yoga through decades since independence. Too late, but won the patent for Surya namaskar finally! However in the meantime the west came out with their own Pilates that is blatant takeover from yoga. Zumba, Taekwondo, Kungfu, Karate everything is patented by the respective origin countries. But then the greatest weakness of a Hindu is, you do not want to charge for the universal goodness that you give the world. What the heck. its not a question of charges. Its about preserving the essence of the tools of our Sanathana Dharam without dilution.
We spend years on deciding which route to take to the top of the pyramid. I did. Its worth testing every tool. With trial and error we can eliminate what won’t apply to us. Heartfulness is okay but I resent the delinking of Hindu aspect from this form of meditation. I don’t think this will give me peace at all! But practitioners of Heartfulness vouch for the peace and harmony in their lives. That stillness of the heart – i guess I can still have with the quiet Om vibration from the base of the Mooladhara chakra and then go on working up.
Before I close I cannot help emphasizing on peace at home before we go seek solace in the outside world as almost all the speakers underscored. That was the takeaway for me from the evening.