30 Apr Q&A on ‘Developing Faith’ at the Satsang, 28th April 2013
The topic for the English Satsang on Sunday, 28th April, 2013 was ‘Developing Faith.’
Following is the transcript of the Q & A between the audience and Dr. Jayadeva Yogendra and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra.
Q. My friend, a strong believer in God, lost his Ram and Hanuman Bhakta wife yesterday. He is inconsolable. How can he be helped?
Dr. J: See, we can’t be calculative. This faith has to be total. There is always a test. We should have total faith, be on the right track.
Smt. H: Death is something that has to be accepted in a second. When we are born, our time of death is roughly fixed. So we can’t alter that state when the person dies. We have to accept what we can’t alter. There is an example that Shastri has given, a man lost his wife, and he told God ‘I want her back, give her to me.’ She was brought back to life. But even after that, she got paralysed, then had heart trouble and suffered. Her life was so miserable that she was better off dead. The man realized that what God had done was right. So it is better to think that whatever happens, happens for the good. Another story I had read said that a child had died and everyone in the village was crying. A saint passing from there was laughing. When asked why, he said that ‘You are burning his body here, but the child’s soul has already taken birth somewhere else and he is going to be a great person. So this is a moment of joy, not sorrow.’ So he could foresee and so didn’t see death as a matter of sorrow. So these are stories that show us that we have to just accept. We feel pain, but try and remember the person fondly. If some person goes to America, he is not physically there but we are fine. So in the same way, we should look at death. Accept and start getting back to your work.
Q. How to erase the painful memories of the past from the subconscious mind?
Dr. J: See, if we are in control ourselves, we should just tell it – Stop. And carry it out.
Smt. H: Firstly, don’t label them as painful. Nothing is wrong or right in the past. We become stronger in painful times. So convert that painful memory into a normal memory. Secondly, you can’t remove the memory, it will come in your thoughts, but the moment that thought comes, don’t think about it, say ‘I don’t have time, I have so much other work.’ So learn to be in the present, keep yourself busy, quickly involve yourself in something so that you have no time to think about the past. Memorize something good, good quotes, jokes, and see that you don’t keep yourself idle to go into the past.
Q. What should we do to develop faith?
Dr. J: See, we have to then decide that I want to believe in God and whatever He does.
Smt. H: Whatever we have shown today in the Satsang, just follow these things.
Q. What does Samkhya philosophy say about God? Does that mean that God is in us?
Dr. J: See, this is a highly technical discussion, so we don’t enter into it.
Smt. H: Samkhya philosophy in short does not use the word ‘God’ at all. It is an alternate management. It talks of Purusa and Prakriti. Purusa is pure consciousness. So it means that you have tremendous strength, you have everything within you. So understand that and see that you don’t suffer because of Prakriti and all the things which happen in Prakriti which are continuously changing. So this philosophy also makes it very clear, that instead of getting lost in pain and problems, right and wrong and all that, be with pure consciousness which is just the observer within us, a purity within us. And you will be able to live life correctly.
Q. My 17 year old son is not believing in God because of my illness of cancer. What to do?
Dr. J: Well, you wait for some more years, then he’ll believe.
Smt. H: See, talking of believing or not believing doesn’t work, you live like that. And yes, if a person is suffering from cancer, naturally a young mind is going to revolt, saying ‘Where is God to help?’ But as long as the cancer patient is living, you don’t know whether your condition will improve or not, but you go ahead strongly, positively. Don’t bring cancer in your mind Cancer is in your body. So mentally you should be doing all the right things and see to it that you live a very full life, a normal life, not a cancerous life. And once you start doing that, the difference will be there, even in the treatment. We have seen cancer getting better. So somehow, put up your case strongly, don’t argue with the child.
Q. How does one see proof of faith everyday?
Dr. J: Keep on remembering God everyday. We don’t do that.
Smt. H: All our Yogic ways – sit quietly and bring balance in the mind very often in the day.
Q. How to deal with failure, as in, when you are put down in front of your co-workers or others or when you are compared to others?
Dr. J: See, my suggestion would be to go to the bathroom and clap and laugh for 10 minutes.
Smt. H: You have to uplift yourself. The world will put you down but you have to get back up. See the whole history of all our saints and sages. Had the world said anything good about them? We call them saints today, but they had to suffer so much when they were alive. So these insults are all in the mind. Uplift yourself.
Q. Is it okay to wear expensive clothes and jewellery without feeling guilty if you like wearing them; when pursuing the path of yoga?
Dr. J: Just watch your money bag. If you can afford it, then you can spend the money.
Smt H: What do you mean by ‘Path of Yoga?’ Are you supposed to wear some orange or white robe and look very religious with Rudraksha and Tikka on the forehead? That also becomes make-up. Don’t think of yoga as dry. Yoga is a way of life. For example, Raja Janak (a spiritual man) was a king, wearing kingly clothes. Whatever is required in a situation should be done, for example in India there are customs where the woman is supposed to wear some things after marriage, etc. So follow those customs. Simplicity is more from within. You may be wearing ornaments but are you attached to them? If something goes wrong with them and you lose your balance, don’t wear them. So yoga is when you are not attached to anything.
Satsang is an open meeting held every Sunday from 9:30 to 10:30 am at The Yoga Institute, Santacruz East, Mumbai. It involves an interesting presentation to the public, made by the students of the Teacher Training Course. Each week, a new presentation of a Yogic concept is made in a simple way through skits and decoration for the general public, followed by a short speech from our Gurus, Dr. Jayadeva and Smt. Hansaji Yogendra.