January 28, 2023 - Lesson 291

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Sloka 136 from Dancing with Siva

What Is the Holy Namah Sivaya Mantra?

Namah Sivaya is among the foremost Vedic mantras. It means "adoration to Siva," and is called the Panchakshara, or "five-letters." Within its celestial tones and hues resides all of the intuitive knowledge of Saivism. Aum.


Namah Sivaya is the most holy name of God Siva, recorded at the very center of the Vedas and elaborated in the Saiva Agamas. Na is the Lord's concealing grace, Ma is the world, Shi stands for Siva, Va is His revealing grace, Ya is the soul. The five elements, too, are embodied in this ancient formula for invocation. Na is earth, Ma is water, Shi is fire, Va is air, and Ya is ether, or akasha. Many are its meanings. Namah Sivaya has such power, the mere intonation of these syllables reaps its own reward in salvaging the soul from bondages of the treacherous instinctive mind and the steel bands of a perfected externalized intellect. Namah Sivaya quells the instinct, cuts through the steel bands and turns this intellect within and on itself, to face itself and see its ignorance. Sages declare that mantra is life, that mantra is action, that mantra is love and that the repetition of mantra, japa, bursts forth wisdom from within. The holy Natchintanai proclaims, "Namah Sivaya is in truth both Agama and Veda. Namah Sivaya represents all mantras and tantras. Namah Sivaya is our souls, our bodies and possessions. Namah Sivaya has become our sure protection." Aum Namah Sivaya.

Lesson 291 from Living with Siva

How to Be Happy

Look in the mirror. You have created your face through your many thoughts that have accumulated through this lifetime. Ask yourself, "Am I happy, or am I looking for others to make me happy?" Allow yourself to be kind; allow yourself to express the qualities, the beautiful qualities, of your soul. Your happiness then will come from within yourself, along with a deep contentment and inner peace and joy. Only a moment of thinking kindly about someone, and making a plan that will enable you to help your fellow man, even just a little bit, will awaken from your soul that deep, inner satisfaction, that depth of security you are really seeking. On the other hand, if you allow your mind to dwell in the realm of critical thinking, in the realm of gossiping, without the thought of helping others, you will feel insecure, unhappy. Nothing that could happen will bring you an inner satisfaction. You will be constantly desirous of acquiring, and that which you do acquire will not be satisfying to you. Why? Because there will be no love in your heart. If you find yourself in that state of mind, turn the energies around and find the quietness within you through being kind, being generous, being helpful. The doing brings its own reward. Only in the accomplishment of being big enough to understand the experiences of life that others go through, being tall enough to overlook the many, many things that you could take issue with and perhaps retaliate for, only in acquiring that depth which comes from your soul, can you truly find inner happiness and peace.

Go out into the world this week and let your light shine through your kind thoughts, but let each thought manifest itself in a physical deed of doing something for someone else. Lift their burdens just a little bit and, unknowingly perhaps, you may lift something that is burdening your mind. You erase and wipe clean the mirror of your own mind through helping another. We call this karma yoga, the deep practice of unwinding, through service, the selfish, self-centered, egotistical vasanas of the lower nature that have been generated for many, many lives and which bind the soul in darkness. Through service and kindness, you can unwind the subconscious mind and gain a clear understanding of all laws of life. Your soul will shine forth. You will be that peace. You will radiate that inner happiness and be truly secure, simply by practicing being kind in thought, word and deed.

A sure indication of the manifestation of the soul nature on the physical plane is consideration for other people's feelings, consideration for other people's state of mind, which means appreciating their good qualities and overlooking their qualities that need improvement. Someone who is considerate is understanding. Those who are not considerate don't understand and don't understand that they don't understand. They don't understand, and they are not considerate and not appreciative, because they are wrapped up in their individual ego. Yet they expect everyone to be considerate of them.

Sutra 291 of the Nandinatha Sutras

The Dedicated Home Shrine Room

All my devotees must have an absolutely breathtaking home shrine, used solely for meditation and worship of Sivalinga, Nataraja, Murugan, Ganesha and the satguru's tiruvadi. This is the home's most beautiful room. Aum.

Lesson 291 from Merging with Siva

Striving and One's Dharma

Many seekers want a future of wealth, family and friends and they want the very highest spiritual illumination, too. This is their spiritual pride setting an unrealistic pattern. We must remember that after one renounces the world, with his entering the higher chakras--vishuddha, ajna and sahasrara--the world renounces the individual. If married, he no longer can fulfill his purusha dharma, his family duties. He can no longer hold employment that offers benefits for longevity. His perspective of the world and advancement in it has been changed forever. As a ship floats aimlessly on the ocean without a rudder, so does the unprepared soul meander who has forced his way, uninvited through initiation, into the realm of the saints and sages of Sanatana Dharma. This is why householders and all who have not properly prepared themselves, been well schooled and tested by a competent preceptor, should not go too deeply into raja or kundalini yoga practices.

If they are prone to anger, jealousy, contempt and retaliation, they should abstain from any of the yogas of japa or exploratory meditation. These will only intensify and prananize the lower chakras that give rise to demonic forces. Rather, they should perform the always healing vasana daha tantra and confine themselves to karma yoga, such as cleaning in and around the temple and picking flowers for the pujas. These simple acts of charya are recommended, but should be not extended to intense worship.

Then, and only then, their life will be in perspective with the philosophy of Sanatana Dharma and begin to become one with Siva's perfect universe. Brahmadvara, the door to the seven chakras below the muladhara, will then be sealed off as their experiential patterns settle into the traditional perspective of how life should be and each individual should behave within it.

The use of drugs is another foreboding danger, for certain stimulants set in motion the kundalini simultaneously into higher and lower regions. For instance, when the user of drugs, like an intruder, forces his way into the experience of the oneness of the universe, the totality of now-ness and all-being, by touching into the fourth chakra, anahata, simultaneously every other center below the anahata is stimulated, meaning svadhishthana and the first, third, fifth and seventh below the base of the spine--the centers of reason, fear, jealousy, selfishness and malice. Noticeable mood swings of those who rely on drugs hamper the person throughout life. Only severe prayashchitta, penance, can set the course toward spiritual healing.