I’ve just returned from a great trip to India. The reason I went there was to learn from Swami-ji who is an extremely rare gem. I’ve been around a lot of spiritual teachers and I’ve learned to distinguish the good beginners from the more advanced.
Swami-ji is not like other teachers – he really knows what he is talking about. Many teachers are well-versed in some aspect, but their knowledge stops there. His authority comes from wide experience on many levels (he’s about 80 can walk faster than me). He says that being a spiritual teacher is risky because there is a lot of responsibility. If things go wrong, as they often do, then a teacher has to know how to fix it.
For example, many people met Swami Muktananda and received Shaktipat and gained all kinds of sidhis and awakenings, but if they ever became unstable, which was common, then they were referred to a psychiatrist(!!!) or told to get lost. Swami-ji did not consider this to be responsible conduct.
On our way out we stopped at new temple in Delhi for Swami Narayana – a 18th century saint. It is a massive, clean, high security development. We did a log-flume ride that show-cased India and its history. Our group included Swami-ji, Joan (his successor in the lineage), three Americans in white and me.
We went to a number of important sites including Swami Sivananda’s hut where he meditated and also Anandamayi Ma’s house where she lived. She is one of India’s most respected modern saints. She dropped the body in 1981. In India a saint is determined by their experience of higher states of consciousness (ie direct realisation of God) and not simply by political activism or good deeds.
Swami-ji was very helpful in unravelling the complicated energetics in my body. He has the ability to see better with his mind than with his eyes. So we would meditate together and then he would tell me what Kundalini was doing in my body. He said that I had a “hole in my bucket,” amongst other things, that was causing me to lose energy.
The hole is a consequence of having had a Kundalini rising in my Saraswati nadi because it disturbed the functioning of manipura chakra. He has given me some practices to retrain the flow of prana in my subtle body. In particular samana vayu was out of balance affecting my digestion and assimilation and creating a chain reaction of negative effects in my mind, emotions and body.