11/18/2017

Weary

World-weary?
Perhaps what wearies you
is not the world
but your own mind.
It's time to make
a pilgrimage
from the furrow
in your brow
to the temple
in your chest.
The distance isn't far,
merely an exhalation,
yet many lose their way
and turn back.
No voice will lead you.
Voices come from the past.
You're not going there.
You're moving
into the ancient now.
Just follow the song
of the next bird.
Travel light.
Abandon names.
Always choose the path
that leads downward
into deeper green,
the valley, not the mountain.
Rooted in loss,
find the place
where there is no ground.
return to your first breath.
Take it again
and again.

11/16/2017

The Forgotten Truth About Kali Yuga

It's popular to talk about Kali Yuga these days in the West. Yes, according to the ancient Vedic teachings, this is the age of increasing injustice, chaos, and political corruption: the dregs of time, when impurities rise to the surface of creation, so that they can be emptied in the trash.
Most Western authors get off on identifying with the trauma, outrage, and chaos of this age, but they are only embracing a half-truth. Kali Yuga is also the age when the secrets are open, the temple veil is rent, and the "highest" teachings are given away in the street. The age of Kali makes spiritual liberation easier, not more difficult, because it is not granted through human effort, but through surrender to the grace of the Divine. Grace is the operative word in this age, not achievement.

And grace becomes concrete, substantial in the human nervous system, through the vibration of the divine Name, the mantra. This is why we find that we tend toward liberation when we hear beautiful music, whe we chant together in satsang, and especially when we merge our heart of devotion with the bija mantra, infused with the Shakti of the Goddess - She who is the very vibration of the supreme Lord's silence.

Harer nama harer nama
harer namaiva kevalam
kalau nasty eva nasty eva
nasty eva gatir anyatha
“In this age of quarrel and hypocrisy, Kali Yuga, the only means of liberation is the divine Name. There is no other way. There is no other way. There is no other way.” ~Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, 15th C.
Kaler doṣa-nidhe rājann
asti hy eko mahān guṇaḥ
kīrtanād eva kṛṣṇasya
mukta-sańgaḥ paraḿ vrajet
"Dear King, although Kali-yuga is an ocean of faults, there is still one good quality about this age: Simply by delighting in Krishna's name, one can enter the communion of the free, the divine kingdom. ~Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 12.3.51

"Though the evil is thickest in this Kali Age, the remedy is the simplest... This Kali Yuga is praised in the scriptures as incomparably conducive to the salvation of humanity, for we can now attain the Highest through the mere remembrance of God's Name. So of all the Yugas, this Yuga is described as the most holy, the most beneficent.

"Concentration and contemplation were prescribed as the means of liberation for Kritha Yuga, Ascetism as the means for Tretha Yuga, and ritual worship for Dwapara Yuga. But for people of this age, the simple remedy prescribed is just Namasmarana, constant awareness of the Name. In spite of this, it is a pity that men do not care for this path and so render their lives barren wastes." ~Satya Sai Baba