Developing the Habit of Meditation

By George A. Boyd © 2020

Q: How can I develop a regular meditation practice?

A: You need to identify a congruent strategy that enables you to sustain a regular meditation practice. Seven major strategies that chelas of different meditation traditions adopt include:

  1. Doing meditation under the teacher’s commandment (Agya) – Disciples meditate in obedience to their Guru and out of fear of displeasing their Master. These disciples develop strong discipline and use their will to overcome inner resistance or laziness.
  2. Asking intuition – In this strategy, you ask your intuition and Higher Self whether it is time to meditate. This inward-looking, curious, and expectant mindset invites the guidance of the Soul.
  3. Inspired reading – This strategy involves reading materials from the lineage’s teachers, or listening to audio or video recordings of their Master to inspire disciples to meditate. In the Mudrashram® tradition, this involves listening to the inspired guidance in our Light Sittings, listening to Question and Answer recordings, reading books channeled from the Swamis, studying the Mudrashram® Correspondence Course, or receiving a Soul Attunement Guidance Channeling. My third teacher, Sant Darshan Singh, encouraged his chelas to read selections from the writings of the Sant Mat Masters to evoke the desire to meditate.
  4. Spontaneous meditation – This meditation is not a voluntary, “choosing to meditate.” The spirit calls you to meditate and you are simply pulled into the slipstream of your spirit opening the Path within. I experienced this when I studied with my second teacher, Sat Guru Balyogeshwar Paramahansa: my spirit irresistibly drew my attention into the state of meditation, where I was led to open and contemplate the four channels of the Nada on the Seventh Transcendental Path.
  5. Planning meditation into your day – In this strategy, you schedule meditation every day, and you develop the habit of meditating at the same time. Going on a meditation retreat where there is a structured schedule of meditation can help you develop these habits.
  6. Strong devotion and longing for Liberation – Powerful Bhakti—love for God and a desire to be free from the bondage of the world—drives some disciples to meditate with great zeal. Those who have this gift of devotion take every unoccupied moment to meditate.
  7. Connection with the inner Master – In this variety, you do meditation when you commune with the guide form of your spiritual Master on the inner Planes. You might receive some inspired guidance and direction from your guide, and then, you do specific meditations, as the guide directs you.

You may notice that you resonate with one or more of these strategies. Whichever of these strategies you choose, it is important to do meditation daily. When you wake up in the morning, think about how you will bring meditation into your day. Ask yourself: “When will I do this?” Feel your motivation for doing meditation. Remember your goal for this session of meditation.

Those who first begin to meditate find there are many distractions that make it hard to pursue their contemplative practice. However, with further practice and deeper experience of the insight, love, and bliss of meditation, you will develop a strong desire to go deeper, to explore the next level, and to progress into your next level of spiritual growth.

Types of Bondage

By George A. Boyd © 2020

Q: What are the major issues that keep people in bondage, so they cannot awaken?

A: There are eight major types of bondage to which the aspirant and disciple is subject:

  1. Health – Certain types of physical and medical conditions make it impossible for you to meditate and to implement personality change.
  2. Addiction – When you are addicted, your entire life revolves around the object of addiction.
  3. Fear – Fear holds you back from forward movement in your life; it can also hold you back from taking your next step spiritually.
  4. False beliefs – These include conspiracy theories and paranoia, which makes it impossible for you to see the truth through these distorted perceptual filters.
  5. Cultism and religious abuse – When you are caught in this trap, you become enslaved to the group leader and it is very difficult to become free.
  6. Ring Pass Not –This makes it appear that what you see on your inner spiritual horizon is the Summum Bonum of spirituality and is the final goal of spiritual development, when it is only a stage on the Great Continuum of Consciousness.
  7. Ignorance – This affects you when you do not understand your true spiritual nature. You identify with your ego and personality, and your career and family roles become your primary focus. As a result, you forget about your spirituality.
  8. Karma – This is the substrate of desire impressions in your unconscious mind that holds your Soul back from Liberation and your spirit from salvation.

We recommend that aspirants and disciples reflect on three things:

  1. Which of these types of bondage affect your life and spiritual development?
  2. What does freedom from each of these types of bondage that affect you look like?
  3. What could you do to overcome this bondage in each area so you could be free?

We can assist you with type 2 with our Addiction Recovery Coaching Program; type 5 through our Cult Recovery Coaching Program.

You can learn to discern the Ring Pass Not of type 5 through study of the Mudrashram® Correspondence Course, which shows the beginning and the end of each Path, and what’s beyond its apparent inner horizon.

We can help you tackle ignorance, type 7, and karma, type 8, through learning to transform the Soul, activate the Soul’s intuition and discernment, and dissolve karma in our intermediate meditation classes, the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program.

Finding Clarity

By George A. Boyd © 2020

Aspirants and disciples often tell me that they seek clarity. Clarity comprises three major components:

  1. Intellectual understanding – This means you understand the terminology and you have a model to grasp the concepts as a whole. For Mudrashram®, this means understanding the Great Continuum of Consciousness, the four poles of being, the cutting edge of spirituality, balanced and imbalanced spiritual development, and the uses of the techniques we impart in Integral Meditation—e.g., how do you use them, and when do you use them. Much of our writing expounds and expands upon these core elements of our philosophy.
  2. Visioning – This is the experiential component. This means you go to an inner location or encounter a spiritual essence with your attention, your attentional principle, or your spirit. You see it, hear it, and feel it. So if we describe certain phenomena marking the top of the Abstract Mind Plane, you are able to travel to that location and experience it. Or if we say, a certain Supracosmic Master (Guru) dwells in the Guru Padam above the seventh Supracosmic chakra on one of the eight Paths on the Buddha Plane of the Supracosmic Sphere, you will be able to go there and gain union with this being and/or sit in his or her presence.
  3. Realization – This is the core experiential component. This occurs when your ensouling entity reaches the same level of development along its track as a location we might describe—e.g., the top of the Abstract Mind Plane—and it actually becomes one with that state of consciousness. In the case of our Supracosmic Guru mentioned above, in the state of realization, your Supracosmic Soul would ascend to the same level as the Guru. You would be as he or she is.

You develop intellectual understanding through study, reading our books and articles, listening to our webinars, and taking courses to extend your grasp of the teachings of the Mudrashram® Masters.

You develop visioning primarily through the practices of Raja Yoga, which aids in rehabilitating the meta-sensory faculties of your attention and attentional principle; and Nada Yoga, which awakens the heart-senses of your spirit. Those of you would would like to learn more about opening inner vision will benefit from taking our Vision Workshop, which is available on our Public Access Webinars under the Public Webinar portal.

You gain realization when your ensouling entity undergoes the process of Initiation, where your ensouling entity moves from one nodal point to another. You may actively produce this transformation through using a transformational technique, or you might passively receive this unfoldment through Light Immersion from a Master. You can receive your transformational mantra in our intermediate courses, the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program.

You really need to advance on all three levels: gain intellectual understanding, have direct experience, and undergo transformation. If you do these things, you will become clearer—you will understand, you will see, and you will know.

The Gentle Craft of Delusion and its Dénouement

By George A. Boyd © 1996

Sweet Siren Song

Oh, I have listened to sweet Siren song
Lulled into inebriation by their melody;
I have forgotten myself too long in some fond reverie
In which the substance of my dreams seems so real.

Sober reason’s insistence, now a distant voice
Can no longer deter me from my ruminations.
My revelations have now become conviction
And my faith possesses me in a waking trance.

Alas, a madman now is at the tiller of this barque
The sails unfurled, lashed helplessly by the merciless winds,
Eddies o’er, into the maelstrom she passes;
Lost the ship, my life and sanity, on the hidden reef below.

There are few people who are so highly rational that they do not entertain some personal superstitions or areas of denial. The ability to test reality is not a seamless web; it may in certain situations be more or less effective. Most of us have temporarily hallucinated when extremely tired or when we have had a high fever, or we might have been fooled by a magician’s slight-of-hand illusions.

Where this process of fooling your self becomes problematical is where your denial increases about certain aspects of your behavior, so that your no longer are aware of its consequences or its impact on your self and others.

Worse, you may begin to attribute your own motivations to others, a psychological defense called projection. When this continues, you begin to lose the ability to take responsibility for your actions. Instead, it seems you are victimized by a hostile and uncaring world. You may come to rationalize your lack of self-care, and even migrate into self-destructive behavior such as addictions.

If you do not obtain realistic feedback at this point, you may drift further into troubled waters. You may begin to weave a fantastic web of delusion, from which you find it increasingly difficult to extricate your self.

Indicators of deepening delusion are the initiation of what I call the active jamming process, mediated through “affirmation, psychological process, and visualization.” The net result of continued self-programming is the creation of a trance state in which you walk about in a state of hypnosis, believing the fabrications of your own wishful thinking.

We note there is legitimate use of these techniques to work on psychological issues and to facilitate integration. When these are misused, however, they are employed to keep you identified with an altered state of consciousness, so you never come back to the grounded state.

When reality does not rudely awaken you at this step, the delusional syndrome makes further inroads into your personality. This is a shift from actively trying to convince your self by active jamming into a state of conviction that what you experience in your fantasy life is real. Now delusion becomes incorporated into your character.

If this process is not interrupted, at some point this delusional system may fall apart, and a person becomes actively psychotic. The dénouement of following the Siren Song of delusion is insanity. We see then, a progression of delusion from innocuous symptoms to a life-consuming obsession that finally destroys the person. This progression is summarized below:

Step One – Symptoms of a deeper problem

  1. Hallucination – temporary breakdown of the filtering system of the central nervous system at the level of the midbrain, allowing stimuli normally shut out to reach consciousness. Can be temporarily stimulated by lack of sleep, sensory deprivation, fasting, too much stress, or psychoactive drug use.
  2. Misperception or illusion – faulty interpretation of sensory stimuli by incorrect completion of the perceptual gestalt, or incorrect interpretation of the sensory cues presented.
  3. Denial – the tenacious adherence to a false belief or interpretation of a situation despite significant evidence to the contrary

Step Two – The active jamming system

  1. Affirmation – the active attempts to reprogram beliefs to fit a desired outcome or state of affairs, by changing the cognitive component of belief.
  2. Process – the active attempts to defuse the emotional component of belief by returning in memory to the origin of a particular issue and releasing its affective energy.
  3. Visualization – the creation of an imaginary image of the desired outcome, in reverie, hypnosis, active imagination, or meditation.

Step Three – Delusions become incorporated into character

  1. Conviction or faith – the adherence to a belief based upon an inner assurance that it is true, based upon the testimonials of the experience of others, miraculous or un-explained personal experience or interpretation of religious doctrine based on a book or books held to be sacred or scriptural revelation.
  2. Revelation or inspiration – intuitive information received as visions, voices, or feelings believed to come from extra-terrestrials, inner guides, spirits, angels, gods or other agencies of the Divine that is believed to be unquestionably true.
  3. Archetypal identification or Gnostic conviction – at this deepest level, you become identified with the inner forms of spiritual noumena, and may come to believe that you are a messenger or child of God, or even the embodiment of the Divine.

Step Four – Unraveling

  1. Panic – great energy must be invested to keep this delusional system alive, by active jamming methods and by remaining in trance states, which confirm the delusions, which has been incorporated into character. At some point this delusional system begins to break down and the reaction is panic, overwhelming anxiety, and great desperation.
  2. Disorganization and disintegration – the systematized delusion system can no longer be maintained. The entire cognitive and affective systems are thrown into disorder, disrupting normal patterns of behavior. This is the decompensation phase, which marks the beginning of psychotic illness. At this stage, hallucination may become nearly continuous.
  3. Reorganization or further deterioration – with assistance from others through psychotherapy, the reality testing mechanism may be reconstructed, returning the individual to more normalized functioning, rational and coherent belief and consonant affect. If successful intervention is not made, the individual may deteriorate further.

It concerns me that many of the New Thought, New Age and conventional religious practices incorporate elements of the active jamming phase and characterological phase of the delusional cycle.

The question that suggests itself: is reality so painful that we must hypnotize and numb ourselves to cope with it? The more frightening question is, does entertaining deeper levels of delusion run the risk of turning our mass movements into mass insanity? Let us hope we do not make it so.

The critical thing you must determine is, are you changing self-limiting belief and unproductive behavior through these attempts at self-help, or are you trying to desperately convince your self of something that isn’t and cannot be true:

  • The first will turn you into a more effective human being.
  • The second will sink you deeper into the quick sands of delusion.

It is important that you take stock of these efforts at self-remediation, and ask your self the very difficult questions that are required by rigorous honesty. If you do not ask these questions, the Sirens will be soon at your door.

How Do You Find a Genuine Guru?

By George A. Boyd ©2016

Many seekers ask, “Can you recommend a Guru?”

One of my friends says, “No I can’t recommend a Guru. Many of them are fake…” Yes, there are fakes and pretenders, but there also are genuine Gurus.

So how do you find a genuine Guru? There are really two parts of this question. One is, “What is a Guru, anyway?” And the second part is “What is it that you are looking for?”

What is a Guru?

To answer the question — What is a Guru? — You need to think about the meaning of the word Guru. One of my spiritual teachers gave this explanation: “The word Guru means one who brings the Light into the darkness.”

So where does that Light come from? It comes from God. Just like there are different divisions in school that you have to complete to move onto the next stage of your education, there are different divisions in spirituality—and there is an anointed, empowered teacher that operates at each level. The form of God that dwells at each of these levels empowers them to minister and guide others. [To understand these references described below, it will help if you read the two articles, “The Great Continuum of Consciousness,” which locates these levels on the Continuum; and “Understanding Nodal Points and Nuclei of Identity,” which explains what are nuclei of identity and how they are different than what we call the ensouling entity.] Here’s the breakdown:

  • In the Transplanetary Realm, the Adept and Adept Master has Mastery over the entire Planetary and Subtle Realm. These teachers have the ability to awaken and transform the Soul Spark (Jivan Atma) and the Planetary Soul (Atma).
  • At the highest level of the Transplanetary Realm, whose scope of Mastery spans the entire Transplanetary Realm, the Transplanetary Adept unfolds the Monad (Paramatma) to the Pleiadean Vortex, where it becomes liberated.
  • In the First Cosmic Initiation, the Yogi Preceptor, who holds sway over the First Cosmic Initiation, transforms the Cosmic Consciousness nucleus of identity.
  • In the Second Cosmic Initiation, the Light Master, whose mantle of Mastery extends through the Second Cosmic Initiation and the 4th Path of the Nada, unfolds the Cosmic Soul Awareness nucleus of identity and the spirit upon the 4th segment of the Nada.
  • In the Cosmic Hierarchy dwells the Cosmic Master, whose aegis is over the entire Cosmic Realm, translates the Astral Soul and its vehicles of consciousness.
  • In the Supracosmic Sphere, the Supracosmic Master exhibits Mastery over one Supracosmic Path, reaching from its roots in the Cosmic to the 7th Supracosmic Chakra on that Supracosmic Path. The methods this Master imparts will activate the Supracosmic Seed Atom on that Path—and sometimes, this will unfold the Supracosmic Soul, if it dwells on this Path.
  • In the Transcendental Sphere, the Sat Guru Bhagwan demonstrates Mastery over one Transcendental Path (T1, T2, T3, T4, T5, T7). He or she liberates the spirit and the ensouling entity upon that Transcendental Path.
  • Also in the Transcendental Sphere, the Multiplane Master or Adi Sat Guru’s Mastery comprises all eight Transcendental Paths (The Bridge Path plus T1 to T7), every Path in the Supracosmic, the Entire Cosmic, Transplanetary, Planetary, and Subtle Realms. He or she can liberate all 13 ensouling entities and the spirit in all 12 segments of the Nadamic Path, starting where the individual is in their spiritual journey, which we call the Cutting Edge of Spirituality. [The Master teachers of Mudrashram® are Multiplane Masters.]

So the form of God that dwells at each of these levels empowers those intrepid individuals who have completed the requirements to function as an instrument of the Light—which may include the ability to [depending upon the tradition]:

  1. Initiate – unfold the ensouling entity, nucleus of identity, the spirit, and associated vehicles of consciousness upon their Path
  2. Guide – lead the spirit and/or the attentional principle on the inner Planes
  3. Convey Path Knowledge – teach about what is in the content of the inner vehicles and the Planes that make up their Path
  4. Facilitate Discernment – bring the attention of the aspirant into union with the spiritual essence(s) that form the core identity of their Path
  5. Inculcate Virtue and Compassion – give ethical teachings to inspire the aspirant to lead a moral and compassionate life, and to reform character
  6. Train – teach the aspirant how to meditate and pray and commune with the spiritual teacher and the Divine on the inner Planes, and show them how to carry out inner ministry
  7. Awaken Awareness, Enlighten and Empower – activate the Kundalini Shakti and raise it to the spiritual essence that is cultivated in their Path, and unite attention with that essence

So these anointed and empowered beings—who are the genuine “Gurus” at each level—are ready to serve whoever comes to them. But they don’t teach the same thing.

Like in school: if you go to a chemistry teacher, he or she will teach you chemistry; or if you go to an economics teacher, he or she will teach you economics. Each of these different orders of “Gurus” is going to teach you something else.

What is it you are looking for?

This brings us to the second question, “What is it you are looking for?”

  • If you want to learn to go to heaven after you die and live a good, moral life while you’re alive, a Christian pastor, a Catholic priest, a Jewish rabbi, a Muslim imam, or a Hindu Brahmin priest will be what you need.
  • If you want to learn how to gain psychic powers and commune with departed spirits, angels, “Ascended Masters,” and extraterrestrials, a Psychic Guide will serve you well.
  • If you want to learn about the arcane teachings of a Mystery School, you need to find a Hierophant of that Mystery School.
  • If you want to tune up your Solar Angel and ascend to higher vibrational levels, you could seek an Ascended Master to show you how.
  • If you want to just complete the Planetary Initiations and become an Adept, you could locate an Adept or Adept Master [e.g., an Adept Master is one whose Monad had ascended into the Planetary Hierarchy; an Adept is one who has united the Soul with the Monad and has become fully realized at that level—at the ground state of the Monad.]
  • If you yearn to realize the Supreme Self (Brahman) and ascend as cosmic consciousness into the Presence of the Lord of the Yogis (also called The Supreme, Yogeshwar, or Ishwara), you need to get hold of a Yogi Preceptor.
  • If you want to ascend as the spirit and unfold your Cosmic Soul Awareness through the 22 worlds of the Divine, acquire a Light Master.
  • If you want to unfold your Astral Soul through all five Initiations of the Cosmic Sphere, search for a Cosmic Master.
  • If you wish to realize one of the forms of the Divine that dwell on the Paths of the Supracosmic Sphere, you need to hunt for a Supracosmic Master who specializes in getting you to that form of the Divine [e.g., there are 64 active Paths up here, so you have quite a variety of conceptions of the Divine from which to choose].
  • If you wish to realize the Light of God from which your spirit was born on a Transcendental Path, look for a Sat Guru who has returned to the Source of the spirit on that Transcendental Path.
  • If you want to complete your spiritual work on all of these levels, then seek out an Adi Sat Guru.

What Guru you’re going to seek depends on what you want. If you want to go back to Sach Khand (the highest Plane) on the Second Transcendental Path, you’re not going to find that if you go to a Kundalini Order Yogi Preceptor. You have to look in the right place.

Criteria for selecting a Guru

So the first thing to ask yourself is, “What am I looking for in a teacher? Where do I want to go? This is going to determine what tradition you investigate.

The next thing you want to determine, “Is the tradition empowered? Is the Light of God working there? If they are just offering ancient rituals, sacred ceremonies, long pilgrimages, and sonorous prayers, having you read scriptures and holy books, and maybe having you sing some nice songs—but the ethers are as dead as a used up coal mine—you might want to go somewhere else.

Next, you need to check in with your conscience to discover, “What are your criteria for a spiritual Master?”

  • Does he or she have to be alive?
  • Does he or she have to have a sinless and spotless character? Or can he or she still have some quirks?
  • Does he or she have to talk about God that looks like [fill in the form of God you want]?
  • Does he or she have to give discourse on specific spiritual Planes [fill in the cosmology you want]?
  • Does he or she need to have reached a particular stage of spirituality [fill in what that looks like]?
  • Does he or she need to manifest a guide form to accompany you through the inner Planes?
  • Does he or she have to remain merged with a state of ecstatic consciousness 24/7, or can the teacher also be a human being?
  • Does he or she have to manifest miraculous powers [e.g., flying instead of driving]?

But it also might be that you don’t know what you want or what to look for. That’s OK. Just start with where you are… in your confusion… with all of the yearning inside… with an open mind and heart… and listen. Notice what resonates… what lights you up inside… what makes you say, “YES!!!!!!!” in the very core of your being. And go there.

Maybe you’ll find some fakes, some frauds, some people who are just out to make money on spirituality… get involved with some cults… in the process. In spite of this, resolve you are going to find that Path that is right for you… no matter how long it takes.

Because that’s what it means to be a seeker or aspirant. It’s not easy. There are genuine Masters. And yes, dear aspirant, there are fakes.

But because there are fakes, frauds, charlatans, and cults, it doesn’t mean you should slam the door on the Light… on your Soul and spirit… and just wait out in the darkness for death to come.

It means you will not let go of the hem of the garment until the Master reveals Him or Her radiant being to you, and you know you have found what you have been looking for.

And if you’ve made some detours… taken some side roads… wasted some time… it will be worth it when you have found the True One you’ve been looking for—and you see, and hear, and taste, and smell, and touch, and know that you have found the Living Light… you will know it was well worth the ordeal you have undergone.