Japji Sahib, Practical Experience

Mantras 1 Comment

Japji Sahib is regularly practiced as the first portion of a Kundalini Yogi’s Aquarian Sadhana.  I have a secret to admit.  For a while there, say several months, I neglected my Japji Sahib practice.  You know how that goes, the regular excuse comes up…well if I skip Japji I can still have lots of time to meditate and I don’t have to get up any earlier. 

So I skipped for a while and I came to realize that I missed it.

During Teacher Training we spent a decent amount of time learning about Japji.  I even bought and watched a CD class dedicated to it’s practice.  I’ve come to realize that a regular Kundalini Yoga practice allows a practicioner to start to move a large amount of energy within the mind, body, spirit system.  I’ve also come to realize that a regular Japji practice helps to regulate this energy.  Specifically for me it helps me to regulate the energy of my mind, which tends to have it’s way with me sometimes.  So when I had had enough of my mind having it’s way with me, I decided to pick up my practice of Japji again, for a very practical purpose.

Now then, I’ve also been keeping a journal.  It’s a daily review journal, but through additional meditation classes I’ve come to the understanding that during yoga and meditation is an excellent time to keep a personal Spiritual Journal of thoughts and impressions that come to mind.  When one is in a meditative state of mind, the thoughts and impressions tend to come from ones soul or sub-conscious mind.  These thoughts serve as clues for what one may be working through at that present point in their life.  So it turns out that during my Japji Sahib practice I keep a journal as well

This is all fine and dandy, however, I was fortunate enough that during teacher training my friend Akal Dev took the time to type up Japji in line with the effects the various pauris (stanzas) have on those who speak the Shabad.  So as I was keeping a journal of the thoughts that popped up in my head during Japji, I kept note of the pauris I was reading at the time of the thoughts, and thus their effects. 

For example, I was chanting pauri 19 when I had an idea, a great idea.  It just so happens that pauri 19 brings universal knowledge, inspiration and revelation.  Well hmmm, maybe I should act on the idea that I had while chanting pauri 19.  What was that idea, well hold tight, it’s going to take a little bit to manifest, but it will come and I’ll be sure to share.

So I’ve found my way back to Japji Sahib, and not only that I’ve found another way to bring soulful insight down into physical manifestation through practical application of Japji Sahib.

good times

Sat Nam!

I am, I am, I am

Mantras 2 Comments

I am, I am, I am

I know what you are thinking, what, I am what?

That’s just it, I am, I am.

One mantra used in Kundalini Yoga is, I am.  This week I had the fortunate experience to listen to Deepak Chopra in Madison.  His talk was fantastic, he took us through some quantum physics and provided some wonderful insights as key take aways.  One thread of discussion especially caught my attention, it dealt with karma.

Dr. Chopra said that thoughts which occur in your mind, and tend to make it challenging for one to mediate, are the result of karmas which are past memories, or desires for the future.  He then stated that by using the Mantra I am, I am, I am for 10 – 15 minutes you can counter those karmas.  Why?

Because I am is undefined.  It is a term that carries with it no karma, it’s simply a mantra of being.  How cool is that huh?  I am, I am, it’s so simple yet so powerful.  So the karma of your thought and the mantra I am cancel each other out, and then you are operating the the “gap” as he called it, which is the off time period in between the on phase of manifestation, which is a continuing cycle of on off on off.  This gap, Dr. Chopra stated, is your Soul.

I suspect Sat Nam is along a similar vibration to I am.

Anyhoot, it was an ah ha moment for me, so I thought I’d share.

I am

I am

I am

;-)

Yoga Class Chicago- Kundalini Yoga & Sacred Sound Workshop

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Ardas Bhaee

Becoming a Living Prayer

Kundalini Yoga & Sacred Sound Workshop with Guru Raj Kaur Khalsa.

Friday November 30th.  6:00 – 8:30 PM.

Sacred Sound has been used through all time to inspire a merger of spirit and form.  Cultivating the self-sensory system with Kundalini Yoga, and using sacred sound with voice and subtle listening, we will be transported into a direct experience of our sacred self.  Vibrate the cosmos and the cosmos will clear the path.

(Please bring a yoga mat, blanket, and water bottle.)

Tai Chi Center of Chicago- 4043 N Ravenswood Avenue #228.

$45 by November 26th, $55 at the door.

This sounds like an excellent workshop ;-)

Patience Pays via SikhNet and Yogi Bhajan

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I came across a great post via SikhNet.

It provides an audio file of an affirmation provided by Yogi Bhajan.  One that I truly enjoy listening to during my Kundalini Yoga practice- Patience Pays.

I look at this affirmation as a prayer, wrapped in a meditation, with the power of mantra.

It is truly inspiring and gives me goose pimples when I hear it during my practice.

For those of you not familiear with the Sikh religion, SikhNet provides a great perspective on it. 

Based on my current understanding Sikh means Disciple.  In life there are many religions that speak of Disciples, in time I suspect that all walks of Disciples will become One.

Sat Nam,

Hershel

Sat Nam Definition

Mantras, Yoga Glossary 11 Comments

The Mantra Sat Nam

Sat Nam is a mantra commonly used in Kundalini Yoga and amongst its practicioners. It is frequently repeated three times at the end of a yoga session. But what is the importance of Sat Nam, what does it mean.

I’ve heard the following interpretations for Sat Nam via my Kundalini Yoga instructors:

  • Truth is my identity
  • My identiy is Truth
  • My True Self
  • Truth is our identity

It has been called the process of naming ones self Truth. It can be used similar to Namaste, (the divine in me aknowledges and pays tribute to the divine in you.) Where the “Truth” is the divine.

Being one who likes to get to “Source” info, I decided to do some further research into the nature of Sat Nam. I made an assumption that Sanskrit is a rather root dialect and that “Sat Nam” in Sanskrit would provide supplemental information on the nature of Sat Nam.

I found this Sanskrit Dictionary, and looked up the words, Sat and Nam.

Sat

  1. being
  2. real
  3. that which really exists
  4. the real existent truth

I’ve seen it written that Sat means Be, or more apprpriately Be-ness. Which would be the essence of being. (HPB’s Secret Doctorine) I suspect some careful analysis would find an interesting correlation between Be-ness and emptiness. (For those of Buddhist faith)

but onward to Nam.

  1. To bow
  2. To submit or subject oneself

And so one is bowing to Truth, to Be-ness the essence of being.

And the active interpretation of Sat Nam emerges.

Sat Nam

H~


Mantra Definition

Mantras, Yoga Glossary 3 Comments

Mantras are words, or a series of words spoken/chanted internally or verbally.  It is said that the universe and all MANifestation is built upon sound, and thus the power of mantras vibrates forth.  In the beginning there was the WORD… 

Mantras are used in Yoga in order to invoke a specific state of mind or being.  There is actually a yogic sciene in proper expression of mantras, when a person generates a sound their tongue is placed across varying locations of their upper pallet.  These locations correspond to meridians, or energy focal points, which in turn correspond to a humans larget energetic system as a whole.  By pressing the right combination of locations on ones mouth one is able to stimulate the proper energy paths in order to bring about the desired, or specific state of being. 

(I always find it interesting to speak about “desired” states of being, when the path to enlightenment requires the relinquishment of desires.  I often question the desire to be enlightened, but I digress)

Another perspective on mantra is that they invoke a specific energy pattern to be brought upon the yogic practicioner.  The repetition of this energy pattern, let’s say devotion, or Union with God, provides the proper inertia for that state of being to be carried on throughout ones day.

The power of words is a power to be mindful of indeed.

All definitions here are based on my understanding, learning and reading of Kundalini and other Yoga related texts, classes and websites.

I invite the Kundalini Yoga experts in the community to ellaborate on what I have presented here, and thus further the learning experience for visitors.