The Guru Came As Ramu – Part I: By Michael Bowes

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Michael Bowes is well known to us as an authentic and genuine and a very experienced yogi and a devotee of Sri Bhagavan Ramana. Internationally, he is well travelled and has been to India. He has visited various Ashrams and Gurus and Swamis in both the U.S. and abroad.

Michael has an uncanny ability to see to the heart of the matter and his spiritual insights pierce through the veils of sentimentality and conceptual baggage. Michael is a long term member of the HarshaSatsangh community and his presence has been a gift.

Given below is a three part story from Michael about his visit to a Swami in India. This is Part I.

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By Sri Michael Bowes

In the spring of 1992 I met a Swami who was making his first trip to the United States. By the time I met him he had been in the States for…

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Meeting Nisargadatta Maharaj: By Dr. Lakshyan Schanzer

A classic and original article about meeting Nisargadatta Maharaj in 1978 by Dr. Lakshyan Schanzer. All the pictures of Nisargadatta Maharaj were taken by Dr. Schanzer. At the end, the author is shown sitting with Maharaj.

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By Dr. Lakshyan Schanzer

My name is Lakshyan Schanzer. I have been practicing and teaching yoga and meditation since 1971. I am also a psychologist and practice a meditative approach to psychotherapy. This is my first writing about my experiences with Nisargadatta Maharaj.

By 1978 I had been practicing and teaching for about 7 years (primarily Integral Yoga) and had reached a ‘wall’ in my practice. I was having wonderful experiences/results on a daily basis. Yet, for me, these experiences were just that; only experiences. Yes, they were important and healing ones, bringing revelations and insights into my history, release of deep feelings, or guidance about the coming day or accurate premonitions about the future.

However, as I became accustomed to ‘pushing the buttons’ that generated these experiences, I began to ask myself: “Was there any value beyond these temporary conditioning effects of regular practice? That is, if we experience…

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My Visit to Arunachala: By Alan Jacobs

Letter From Alan Jacobs after returning from Arunachala

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My dear Friends,

My whole recent visit to Arunachala was filled with Bhagavan’s boundless Grace from beginning to end. Continue reading

Eternal Heart: By Christine Wushke

The people in your life are on a unique and sacred path; each and every one a work of art, a Divine mystery.  We can’t always know why people do what they do, or why things are playing out the way they are. But we can always honor their path, respecting its uniqueness, and trust that it is the way it is for a reason. Everyone in your life right now, is in your life for a reason; each relationship here is an opportunity to soften our hearts, change our lives, and inspire us to grow. Continue reading

Darkness and Light: by Christine Wushke

Being willing to sit honestly with yourself in the darkest of dark nights is a gift to the world. When we can sit in our own deepest pain with a willingness to accept it as it is, to forgive it, or even to just be with the experience; we begin to break down the cycle of authorship, projection and blame. Continue reading

Diary of A Mystic Yogi: By Christine Wushke

Three Day Mountain Isolation Retreat: Journal Entry #3:

Day Three: Sunday morning I was sitting in my little cabin and the sun was shining through the window. I wanted to sit in the sun for a while so I closed my eyes and was just enjoying the warmth. Just like the previous day i began to notice a strong buzzing underneath me, as if the floor and chair were vibrating. At some point I became aware of an inner expansion, which I just allowed to unfold in front of me. Continue reading

Restorative Bridge Pose: By Christine Wushke

This is a wonderful restorative yoga pose for times when energy feels low, or sluggish.  This pose is very relaxing, and yet leaves you feeling refreshed and rested after just a few moments.

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1. Stack 2 or 3 blankets, and place them about 2 feet from the wall. (or closer of your legs are shorter) Place 2 blocks, or a few books against the wall.

bridge sized 2. Sit in the center of the blankets, and place your feet on the blocks. Lie down so that your shoulder blades are on the floor, your heels are on the blocks, and the soles of your feet are on the wall. You may need to adjust the distance from the wall a few times to get yourself in the right position. The neck should feel very comfortable, with no pressure on it at all. Continue reading

Healing Poses for the Abdominal Organs: By Christine Wushke

This sequence of poses is great for when you feel sluggish, run down, heavy, or are just needing some over all healing for the abdominal organs. If you have a serious medical condition, these poses may not be for you, when in doubt check with your doctor.

Reclining Bound Angle Pose

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Lie on two or three staggered blankets, checking that your body is totally comfortable. Support your head with a blanket, and support your thighs with blocks or pillows. Breathe evenly and relax into the pose. Enjoy for 3 or more minutes, and then roll to your right side. Continue reading

The Freedom of Being: Tails of a Loving Dolphin Encounter by Christine Wushke

Ever since childhood I had dreamed of swimming with dolphins, so it was no wonder when I heard someone shout “there are dolphins in the bay!” I dropped everything and ran to the beach. This was my first up close glimpse of wild dolphins. I was on day one of my first Retreat on the magical big Island of Hawaii, and seeing wild dolphins was a life long dream finally fulfilled.

Without thinking (which turned out to be a good thing) I put on my snorkel gear and started to head out in their general direction with a friend. Having been previously advised by a few friends experienced in the area of swimming with wild dolphins, I was told to not approach the dolphins, but to swim out and “mind your own business”. Or just hang out in their general vicinity, and maybe, just maybe, they would come over and check you out.

dolphn sparkles  I was normally pretty terrified of swimming in the ocean, and phobic of sharks, but on this day I felt completely safe, as if the aura of the dolphins were saying “it’s OK we will protect you”. At some point when I was swimming out I could hear the chirps and whistles under the water, and the feeling of safety and calm strengthened. I looked up and could see the fins off in the distance, and decided I was close enough. Not wanting to disturb their personal space, I just floated where I was, waiting. My friend had asked me to stay close by, as he wasn’t a very strong swimmer, so I was keeping my eye on him. At some point we decided to float and meditate, in hopes that the dolphins would get curious and come over to see what we were doing. I started to enter a meditative state, and let my inner heart open, as if sending a message to the dolphins that I was happy to see them, and could almost immediately feel a deep love and joy come back to me. Continue reading