Posted by: Lisa | May 21, 2014

Awakening

“As for me, in my justice I shall see your face
and be filled, when I awake,
with the sight of your glory.”
(Psalm 17:15)

From a yogic perspective, “in my justice” means: “when I have been established in the yamas (restraints) and the niyamas (observances) as well as all the other practices of the spiritual journey.” It’s easy to forget about the restraints and the observances. It’s easy to fool ourselves, to tell ourselves, “Oh yeah, yeah, I know all about that.” We know, perhaps, but do we really care, do we really make a sincere effort to practice?:
yamas:
— non-violence
— truthfulness
— non-stealing
— moderation in all things, especially sexuality
— non-grasping
niyamas:
— cleanliness
— contentment
— physical discipline
— self-inquiry
— surrender to God

These are prerequisites to awakening from the dream we normally see as our daily reality. Of course, we will never be perfect in these restraints and observances, but they are nevertheless part of our practice, part of our journey.

When we practice sincerely, we create a foundation for “awakening” to occur. When we awaken, we enter the kingdom of heaven in this very moment, we see the glory of God in each moment.

Psalm 17:15 gives us hope that we can indeed awaken.

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Responses

  1. Hello

    I have an understanding of at least the way society wants us to view spirituality but I must ask what drives you is it faith, belief or some type of feeling. I sometimes have a spiritual feeling when my emotions are running high or when I’m very stressed and feel like God is the only one that can help me. In your opinion what is that. In reading this post I feel you may be open-minded and can give me your honest opinion.

    • Thank you for this, Mr. Gibbons. I will reply to you a little later, since I’m getting ready to head out for work now.
      Have a blessed day!

    • Okay, Mr. Gibbons. First, these are great questions. Congratulations for even being aware of these questions and taking the time to articulate them!

      The main thing that drives us is faith. This means that we believe and trust God at all times – even in the midst of doubts, which may seem paradoxical. As we grow in our spiritual lives, we find that we want to maintain an awareness of God all day as we are going about our normal daily lives. So it’s not just when we are feeling emotional. It’s good to think of God when our emotions are high or low – but it’s even better to be aware of God with us at all times. That comes with faith. There is an old spiritual book (like 500 years old!) that you may enjoy. It’s called The Practice of the Presence of God, by Brother Lawrence. He was a Carmelite monk who worked in the kitchen of his monastery. He practiced (and taught other people to practice) maintaining a continual awareness of God at all times. This is probably the fastest and easiest way to real spiritual growth. Even the Yoga tradition recommends such a practice, calling it Ishvara pranidhana, “surrender to God.”

  2. Very interesting, I will say Thank you first of all and I would like to comment by saying I do have a certain amount of faith I’m just not sure if our faith is just an avenue for us to get through the day. Me being a strong minded person sometimes need a reason for the why’s and the what’s. I will give you an example, why are we the chosen ones who take a simple thing like Air Condition for granted because its always available and what did people in these third world countries ever do to anyone to like in poverty and destitute. I know I went a little deep but I would like to get your point of view on this.

    Thanks

    • Yes, I have heard some people claim that faith is a kind of “crutch” for getting through the difficulties of life. However, for people who believe in God and have strong faith, there is more to it than that. It’s hard to explain it in words. It’s a sense that all things are working for our good (Romans 8:28) even though we cannot always understand. We know that while we are blessed with AC, other people (including those living in poverty) are blessed with things we have not been given. Maybe loving children or a special artistic talent. We are challenged to grow in gratitude for our blessings, no matter what they may be. We always have a choice: We can take things for granted or take them with gratitude (a paraphrase of G.K. Chesterton). Sounds like you are striving to take things with gratitude. Wonderful!

      I don’t mind deep conversations. Just ask John. He and I talk like this all the time. 🙂


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