Wednesday, November 10, 2010


In Swamiji's morning Satsangs He is talking on Bhakti (Devotion) every day He is revealing another component. Today is was on Prema Bhakti (the highest form of love for God) it has been described as desperate longing, a person drowning and grasping for air. He says "You don't own Bhakti, Bhakti owns you." It is nothing that can be possessed it can only posses you. When we try to put words to our love and devotion we diminish it, Bhakti can only be experienced.
The best way I can describe my experience is when the Guru enters your life it's as if He moves into your house, rearranges ALL the furniture, throws out all the trash and makes Himself comfortable in the couch of your heart. He declares permanent residence and nothing can be done but pure surrender.
When everything else fails in life and we come to the conclusion that life is purposeless all we have left is our love and devotion to the Supreme we can relax in the ultimate ecstasy by letting go of what is not real and surrendering to what is Real.

When success stops impressing me
And I fall into the depression of my being
Let me feel your enveloping Presence
And heed Your call, O Arunachala! ~Paramahamsa Nithyanada

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

When the Urgency Becomes Urgent

When the Urgency becomes Urgent
How Swamiji’s blessings brought me from Canada to India

Nithyanandam! My name is Ma Ananda Sangavasini. I would like to share an amazing story with you. This story is about how Paramahamsa Nithyananda, lovingly referred to as Swamiji, came into my life and brought me to India in a miraculous way.

For the last ten years I have lived in Canada, North America. In September 2009 I went to Kalpataru, Vancouver, meeting Swamiji for the first time. I asked Swamiji to help me come to LBE (Life Bliss Engineering) as I had no money at all, only financial debts. The tuition fee was USD$8000. Swamiji blessed me and answered with “I’ll take care, Ma”.

From my own experience I would like to share how this process went. Along the way, like many others, I faced challenges, doubts and negative thoughts that could have stopped my from going. I know many of us are going through this. May this be an inspiration for you to see what I did and how many miracles happen that can happen to you too!!!

Clarifying Some Myths…
One myth is the idea that Westerners have lots of money and it’s no problem for them to pay $6000 or $8000. The other myth is that people who attend the LBE or I.A. program don’t have anything to take care of to come to the program, that it was just easy for them to just come and spend 3 weeks or 3 months in India. Sometimes people commented: “You are So Lucky.” I can tell you, these myths are both false. For one, the living standards in the West are very costly, so many people have credit cards, debts and not a lot of money. Secondly, to be able to come here, there is no “Luck” involved. In most cases it takes tremendous courage and the willingness to drop certain things to be able to come.

While in the LBE program, I was often joking with fellow participants. Most of us were either homeless, without a job, or both, in order to make it to the program. All of us agreed that we had never been happier, more blissful in our life, and would not have wanted to miss the tremendous experience and transformation for anything in the world. All I can say is: there is nothing else in life that could be more beneficial for you. Don’t miss this amazing opportunity! If it can happen for me, it can, and will, happen for you. Just be open.

If Not Now, When?
There were many times when situations came up that could have been considered obstacles, that would have prevented me from going. Nevertheless, the urge had become urgent; the intense desire to wake up from the dream was undeniable. The wish to live a blissful, amazing life had become stronger then these self limiting thoughts and depressing life I had been living. Even when negative thoughts would come, I would not buy into them. There were many times when friends told me; “Maybe you are not meant to go this time” or the thought would come “maybe this is not the right time, first I have to take care of this and that, I’ll wait until the next program.” Believing these thoughts was simply not an option for me. I strongly felt, after so many years of intense searching and longing: If not Now, When?

Blissful Sharing to Support You
The reason why I want to share my experience with you, is because sometimes we don’t have the support in our lives that we need. We might not understand what we are going through and might not have the kind of people around us to uplift us. This journey can be so confusing. My wish is that through my sharing, it might bring more clarity to you. After all, we are all in the same boat, we are all going through the same process. The question we can ask is; how badly do we want to change our lives? When we’ve had enough suffering, when the intensity and surrender to the master is there, it will simply happen. Just like it did with me. Sometimes we might think that after Swamiji blesses, the money will just fall into our lap. Through my direct experience I can say that this is not true; we have to take action and play our role too!

My challenges were:
• I had to move out of the rental home within two months after I moved in (the only way I could afford to go to India was not having to pay rent) which resulted in me having to go to the small claims court with the landlady as I had signed a one year lease.
• I had to put my belongings in storage;.
• No money: I was self employed with a very small income, no savings, no assets and a credit card that was maxed out. I had no possessions of any value that I could sell.
• I needed someone to take care of my dog for three months
• This all happened in September, which was only two months away from the start of the program. To be able to make my dream come true, the amount of USD$10.000 minimum would had to show up within this time frame. Something unheard of for someone like me.

All in all, it didn’t look very good. When Swamiji said “I’ll take care, Ma” during the Kalpataru, I knew that he meant it. I also realized my role in it - I took action. Not forcefully, but intuitively. I tried everything I could possibly think of. In this, I realized that the process had already begun, even before I arrived in India. It showed me again that Swamiji is with us, no matter how ‘far’ we think the physical distance is. For Him, there is no physical distance. When He says “I’m with you”, He is. Right here. Right now.

The actions I took:
• I continuously asked Swamiji for guidance, no matter what challenge came up;
• To get the tuition fee, I tried everything I could think of. I applied for a line of credit, a credit card, even a line of credit with a friend as a sponsor but nothing worked out;
• I had to tell my employer that I would have to quit my job for the time I was in India;
• I did fundraisers, asked for small loans and donations;
• A dear friend lend me money to buy the plane ticket, even though I had no funds to pay the tuition fee for the LBE program;
• I got my Visa to enter India, before I had the tuition fee.
• Daily I visualized myself being in India. For example, when I practiced Nithya Dhyaan, I visualized myself sitting in the meditation hall at Swamiji’s ashram with hundreds of other people. I felt intensely the joy that I “made it there”, that it had happened.
• I asked my friend if he could take care of my dog.

The miracles that happened in the process:
• I won the court case with the landlady. In the process I faced tremendous fears amongst other emotions and worked through those with the grace of Swamiji;
• I experienced deeply what Swamiji had told me at the Kalpataru: “I’ll take care”. Such tremendous trust and love started to flow in my being more and more as I went through this experience;
• Through different means, the money started to flow in: a friend sold his guitar and had done fundraiser meditations for me. He just gave me $1400 with wanting anything in return. I did fundraisers myself, the store that I work out of did fundraisers for me, I got some small loans and people just gave money to me. Even several people that just knew me only from volunteering at the Satsangs gave me $500 with not wanting anything back!
• Not only did I find a place to stay for my dog, another friend donated food for her during my stay in India!
• The amazing miracle that happened: I MADE IT TO INDIA through Swamiji’s grace only. TWO DAYS before I boarded the plane, all the funds came together! Not only $10.000, but $12.000 dollar came my way within two weeks!!! So now, not only could I go to the LBE, but, as I intensely wanted, I was even able to go to the Khumba Mela!!!
• Through this experience, I felt the deep love, care and compassion of people and the experience that people do care, that the universe supports us. So often, even when I was here at the ashram, I would break down into tears of deep love and gratitude for Swamiji and for all those who had made it possible for me to come to the ashram. If I would have just gotten the line of credit, I would have missed out on this amazing experience. I would not have wanted to miss this in the world!!

Words of Inspiration for You
• Intensity is the key! Simply be intense in your desire to come to the program.
• Visualize daily that it has already happened, and feel it in your whole being. Even as you go throughout your day, do not say anything that will contradict this. Just keep visualizing, and have fun with it. Feel the excitement.
• Watch Swamiji’s discourses daily, surround yourself with His energy as much as you can. Ask Swamiji to help and guide you. Drop expectations of how you think it should happen!! Allow the intelligence to do the job.
• Don’t listen to or mother any negativity, whether it is from your own thoughts or from other people. Anything is possible when you believe in it! Don’t suppress it, but just see that they are fish jumping out of the water. They are not real.
• Take action when action is required. This is about taking responsibility. I believe that the biggest misconception is that we think just because of Swamiji’s blessing we can be lazy and it will all happen automatically. NO! We have to play our part too.

My deep wish is that this was of some help. When I went through all this, at times I felt utterly insecure and totally desperate when things did not go as I expected. There were many times where I was not sure if it was going to happen. All I could think of, was this: Swamiji has said it, so it will happen. I surrendered it all to Him. And look at what happened! I know that like me, many people have experienced the same thing. And you can be one of them!!

If you have any questions or would like some personal feedback you can contact me in person at

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Epic of Silence

Two days ago Swamiji reinitiated us into conscious awareness again. He did it back in LEP and that lasted a whole day if that. Why is it so hard to slow down and be fully aware of our actions, thoughts and emotions? Why are we such in a hurry? What are trying to achieve? Where are we trying to go? What’s the rush? When I really stop to answer those questions. I have to honestly have to say I am exactly where I want to be! So why I am I rushing around, I’m here. There is no goal to achieve. The only goal I have cared to strive for has been self-realization and I am here to do that. What else is there? Just at that moment like a lightening bolt I came to the conclusion I am exclusively here for that right here right now. This is the time and place to do it not later. The environment has been set for me to do and come out of these samskaras (engrams).
The prior few days I was experiencing severe upper back pain which was usually related to stress. But now I have no stress, I have not had stress in over a year. So I figured I needed to apply some awareness to this situation. I came to the realization that it was due to my unawares in my body in the way I moved and the thoughts that I was entertaining. I was always moving around in rush mode totally unconscious just out of habit. I had a huge click when I was doing my morning yoga practice. I was getting ready to leave and I picked up my clock all the sudden I recognized how I aggressively I picked it up. I was shocked, then I realized there was so much tension in all of my movements, I could literally feel anxiety running like a current through my system. It was as if I was playing out an old record on repeat. Simultaneously I felt compassion for my muscles and every living organism in my body. What was I doing to it with this mind set? I could only be causing myself harm with those thoughts running through me. No wonder my shoulders hurt!
I have been blessed to experience amazing bouts of awareness lately, but I know I could take it deeper and going into silence would take me there. Swamiji says that when you stop talking on the outside you stop talking on the inside. By reducing my chatter on the outside I have more energy to monitor my thoughts and actions. Not only this the past few days we have been working on re- living the past to relieve it and needless to say my emotions have been quite volatile. I have been waking up with intense anger and irritation (again I have not experienced such strong emotions like this in over a year pre- India) for no such reason. And to make it even more interesting throw in a nice helping of depression into the mix. What the heck is going on? Anyhow, I just figured for the safety of all concerned myself included I needed to go into silence and sort this out once and for all. I want this stuff to leave me forever.
Lot’s of interesting things are coming up during this process. Today has been my 3rd day in silence and originally I thought I would see if I can make it a whole 3 days and I am here and have no desire to speak. I find that the longer I remain silent the deeper I go more layers to unravel. Being in silence has really taught me how to monitor my thoughts in my conversations. The problem is I can’t control others words as I have a conversation with them so not speaking right now is the right solution. I am trying to tame my negative chatter not contribute to it. I just know that the state I am in my ego would want to contribute and that would be self defeating.
There is a big difference between the intellectual understanding of awareness and the actual experience of awareness. When it experienced in you system it creates permanent changes within your DNA. Stubborn persistent samskaras leave your being forever.
I know this may sound crazy but it has been my true experience of only 3 days of silence. I am going to tell you a secret. I have always had a fear of not having enough food therefore I hoard it like a squirrel or worst yet stock up for the next world war. Thus which leads to overeating, which leads to guilt, shame and all sorts of gross emotions. Anyhow, a few days ago Swamiji talked about 2nd layer past life healing. He said that obesity is caused by fear and guilt from past lives. It could have either been from starving to death or stealing food from others. This is why we feel the need to store it in our current body, which turns into accumulated fat. I have always suspected I starved and drowned (I will elaborate on that revelation later) in a past life. It was something I just have known and now it makes complete sense why I do the things I do.
If you learn to bring awareness to every moment every action, everything that happens becomes lessons and transforming energy in you and these samskaras (engrams) leave you. Ok, so this is the cool part. I have actually felt and look thinner in just 3 days and that would be without me trying because I’m not going to lie I have been eating sweets (but with full awareness, whatever that means). What this means is I am digesting what is needed and releasing what is not needed and this is how we are liberated from our past and we are healed. This is the power of awareness. Stay tuned as I continue to reveal more in depth revelations regarding silence and awareness.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Experiencing Miracles First Hand

My mom’s cat was dying this weekend and she was so down and depressed she just did not think she could take one more death. Ever since my dad died 3 years ago she has been living a grief stricken life. I can’t even say life more like a slow death. It’s as if she died with him. Which explains why she has so many health problems including Multiple Sclerosis. Ever since his death she has not been able to come out of her grief. It’s as if she is paralyzed by fear and her disease is a direct reflection of her state of being. It has been very painful for me to witness this. Especially since we both experienced the loss of my dad and I have recovered better than I could ever imagine and my mom is suffering with unrelenting grief. How is this possible? Well, I had been bestowed by the grace of Swamiji (Paramahamasa Nithyananda) to buoyantly overcome the death of my beloved father whom I cherished. Before my dad died I literally thought that I was going to die with him. I never thought I would live through it; the thought was just too painful to endure. Well, to my surprise I did! I’m still standing. Not only am I still standing but also I have a clear understanding about death and all my fear has been removed. I was lucky enough to attend Nithyananda’s program called NSP (Nithyananda Spurana Program) where Swamiji literally works on your seven energy bodies which are Physical, Pranic, Etheric (Subtle), Spiritual, Casual, Cosmic and Nirvanic. By working directly with the Master you are able to release all your heavy numbing emotions like fear, sorrow, desire, guilt and pleasures. Just how the lotus blooms in the very presence of the sun, so too will your karmas burn in His presence!
Because I experienced such beautiful space of solace and peace, I wanted the same for my mother who has been not been able to come out of her grief or see any reason to continue living. She is simply existing not living.
So I have decided to ask Swamiji to please help her. She has reached a very dark place and she needs the assistance of an enlightened master to illuminate her heavy heart. I made my request to Him and the next day my mom experienced a few miracles. That morning unfortunately her cat did die and to my surprise she decided to go to work that day despite the incident. Not only did she have her cat die that morning but also she had quite a costly error at work, which could of cost her, her job. Surprisingly with out any logical explanation the error got sorted out and her boss told her “someone must be looking out for you!” Immediately she knew it was Swamiji. She was so shocked she could not believe it! And to her surprise she was gracefully accepting her cat’s death. She was so amazed in the change in her from the previous day to the present and how she was handling the death without any heaviness. She sounded so happy and joyful on the phone when I talked to her I was astonished. There was no way my mom could be so happy when her cat just died and almost got fired in one day! Through this beautiful miracle that my mom experienced I too benefited by being a witness to the whole thing. This really proved to me that there is hope for each and every individual soul out there to come out of their pain and suffering. All we need is an open heart and the intention to truly seek something larger than ourselves and allow these Divine miracles to work through us.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Practicing Seva Consciousness

“Life has no goal, it is a beautiful happening.”~Paramahamsa Nithyanada

According to Sikhi Wiki Encyclopedia of the Sikhs, Seva also Sewa, short for the word Karseva refers to ‘selfless service’, work or service performed without any thought or reward or personal benefit.
Seva is a Sanskrit word referring to volunteer work; selfless service or work offered to God.

Seva is a beautiful spiritual discipline that awakens us to the deeper truth of our beings.
It’s not about what we are doing; it’s about how we are doing it. What is our state of being as we are performing the service? What is our attitude? When we perform duties without any ideas of selfish rewards but as a contribution to the greater whole we automatically fall into a space on non-detachment. Krishna says in the Bhagavagita when our thoughts are only on ourselves, this creates bondage and this kind of attachment generates obstacles in our life. When there is attachment then there is suffering. Performing selfless acts is a way of achieving peace and harmony within ones life.
There are many benefits while practicing seva, the healing of others, our environment and ultimately us as we come to a deeper spiritual understanding.

When first presented with the project of seva I did not feel resistance towards the seva itself but resistance towards myself. I was able to recognize immediately that it was causing an internal tsunami. I had 2 choices; I could either resist it (which really I would be resisting myself) or dive in and work through my garbage. Seva has given me an opportunity to breakthrough all my stubborn little samskaras like procrastination, self-limitation and lack of self-confidence. As I sat down to do my task I found myself irresistible tempted by distractions. All the sudden I think I am hungry, thirsty or even the greatest escape trick I have to run to the bathroom. Everything else seemed more important than what I really needed to do. I realized I was doing the same thing I would do when I was in kid in school trying to do my homework. I would postpone, distract and delay as much as possible. As I was observing this I also noticed these self-defeating thoughts arising. Were they mine or were they voices of teachers, parents or society at large?

The real shift for me occurred when I decided to dedicate my seva to my guru Paramahasa Nithyanada then everything changed. My perception immediately changed and I felt a deep desire to make a difference plus I had the energy to fulfill it. The best thing I can suggest to someone who is struggling with this is to dedicate you seva to something higher than yourself. It does not have to be a guru, it could be a deity, someone you love, your cat even, heck it doesn’t matter! What this immediately does is remove ‘you’ from the equation. It’s as if instantly the biggest obstacle is removed and that is yourself. The strange that happens is when you dedicate your service to someone or something else ultimately you are offering yourself the best gift of transformation. Doing such devotional service can literally elevate you being to higher dimensions. Seva is one of those things where you are giving and receiving simultaneously which can bring fulfillment. When we are completely unattached to our actions our mind automatically falls into the state of Nithyananda (eternal bliss), which is the essence of yoga. Then the magic starts to flow!

It’s like yoga asanas. In the beginning there is so much pain and resistance going on but if I just stay focused and centered knowing that it is for my own good I will eventually breakthrough. When doing my seva it is the same uncomfortable feeling but when I look back at my yoga practice when I just stayed diligent and did it despite my negative chatter I eventually was able to perform a much difficult asana much to my surprise. In the same way I am breaking through all my limited beliefs about myself. There is no tomorrow, I will not feel more inspired later, I have been given this opportunity to breakthrough now so utilize this beautiful gift! Don’t miss this opportunity to merge with the Divine.

“When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction and you feel yourself in a new, great and wonderful world. Suddenly, dormant forces, faculties and talents within you become alive and you discover yourself to be a greater person that you ever dreamed yourself to be” ~Patanjali

Monday, September 27, 2010

Yoga As a Way To Overcome Resistance

Even as I try and write this blog I am battling with my resistance is the same way I resist my yoga asana practice. The minute I sit down to write, something else more enticing seems to be bargaining for my attention. It’s a silly game I play with myself again and again. It’s like a challenge to see who is going to win; my ego based self or my True Self. Constantly this fight is going on within.
One day when I was trying to talk myself into doing a much difficult asana I suddenly realized how much resistance I was having to it. I didn’t want to do, it was too painful, oh some day I will practice it, I don’t have enough time, etc. as the list of excuses streamed through my head. Not only was I having physical resistance but psychological resistance as well. Then almost instantly I noticed that I do the same thing in my life when I have to do something that I really would rather not do but know it is for my highest good. The same scenario plays out all the sudden I seem to be hungry, hhmm, maybe I’ll have some tea or I have to go to the bathroom (the classic escape route). Frantically my mind is thinking of things I could be doing except for what I really need to be doing. I was creating all these distractions to avoid the pain either externally or internally. I was allowing myself to be in bondage of procrastination. Putting off what could be achieved today. The beautiful thing about doing yoga asanas is, when done with complete awareness and being fully conscious of your breath it brings you directly into the moment in that space of pratyahara (withdrawal of the senses). If I just fully allow myself to be completely present and breath through the discomfort, the pain disappears then I feel as if I created space for something new. It’s as if this physical release is causing a psychological breakthrough. So if it is true that we really do hold samskaras (engraved memories) in our muscles, then when I am doing as asana with complete full awareness and releasing the physical tension I am releasing the psychological tension as well. Moving through my asana practice unconsciously is the same as moving through my life unconsciously. This is the main reason why I do yoga is to awaken my awareness in all aspects of my being. If I can achieve this in my physical body I can certainly achieve this in my external world. So the next time I am struggling with Urdvha Dhanurhasana I have to remind myself it is part of my breakthrough.

“The intention with which we do something and the awareness while we are doing something that is responsible for making us experience the stat of nithya ananda.” ~Paramahamsa Nithyananda

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Practice of Aparigraha

I am used to kind of like living like a sadhu, or like to think I was, however, sadhu’s only possession may be a kamandalam (a water pot) and I own a little bit more stuff. I used to take pride that all I pretty much owned was a car, some clothes and a cat.Now I only own a car and some clothes as my beloved cat has passed on. I have been living out of suitcases for the past couple of years and have been enjoying it, I’m weird like that. I’m not going to lie,
I have always secretly wanted to be a sadhu, well now is my chance.
I have come to India to attend a program with my Guru Paramhamsa Nithyanada called Living Enlightenment Process. I have now officially entered “Sadhu Boot Camp”. We have been given the opportunity to live like real sadhu’s in the loving energy field of the ashram in Bidadi.

Aparigraha is the fifth yama (restraints) of Asthanga yoga’s eight limbs each one representing one aspect of Living Enlightment. Yamas and Niyamas are guidelines as to how we can live a yogic lifestyle. How we relate to people and situations outside of ourselves is yamas and how we relate to ourselves inwardly is niyama. This is the core of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. The sanksrit word is translated as non-grasping, non-possesiveness. The term usually means to limit possessions to what is absolutely necessary and to maintain a non-greed mind set, non-grasping or clutching on to things. Non, non, non something I am definetly not used to. I usually satisfy all my desires without any second thoughts to whether I really need this or that. Always taking unconsciously taking without any regard to whether it is really necessary or not to have those 15 cookies. Is it really possible to be satisfied with just one? In this day in age at least in my society the mantra seems to be “If one is good then more is better”. Just look in my kitchen junk drawer there are at least 50 packets of soy sauce which I will never use! What about all my clutter and the all the extra clothes I don’t even use? When I go grocery shopping I buy way more than I can consume. Do I really need all this stuff? Where does all this hoarding come from? Greed. Which ulitimately stems from fear. Fear of not having enough, because if I don’t have enough I will die. Every fear if we really try and trace it’s root source is a fear of death. So we just keep grasping and hoarding every last thing we can. I have to admit when I do this it really doesn’t make me feel comfortable. I believe that this fear is really a fear of not trusting Existence and it’s ability to provide for me and al my needs. What is it going to take to get me to relax and trust? Activiely practicing aparigra with full awareness at every moment.
Aparigraha does not only apply physical material things it also applies to our relationships as well. This could even go as far as not monopolizing someones time or taking advantage a friends generous nature.

Lot’s of interesting things are coming up with this aprigraha process. I find that I really appreciated things more in my life that I used to take for granted. Especially food! At any time of the day could I eat anything that I wanted in any amount. Everything was within my reach, just a car drive away. I could satisfy every craving I ever had no problem.
It is taking extra awareness to control my food cravings. It would be all so easy to say ‘Oh, well, I need protein, I need sugar, I need caffeine, I need this, I need that”. What this whole process is teaching me that I really need less than I think I do. I can get by and manage with a lot less. It is true what Swamiji said when you do this exercise it really frees you up. Frees up your inner space.
In this process here at the ashram most of the time we don’t have hot water and sometime we don’t even have any water! There was one time when there was just ¼ of a bucket of water that someone left (clean of course) and I managed to take a bath. I was amazed at how little I need to get the job done. When we do have hot water it is such a joy, such a treat! I am so happy! I really can appreciate the warm water so much it’s as if every part of my body is celebrating. All these things that I so easily take for granted back home.
My greatest understanding in this exercise is there is more than enough in this abundant Universe and all I need to do is relax and trust that Existence is taking care.

When you understand the purposelessness of life, you understand the meaning of living. ~Paramahamsa Nithyananda