Harmonious Married Life
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami , 2009-05-03
Positive discipline principles apply between adults as well as between parents and children. Healing differences between adults and in marriage. Adjust where awareness is flowing into actinic energy and have peace and harmony. Harmony an absolute must in spiritual work.
Good morning everyone.
Today is the Ganesha homa in Mauritius, first Sunday of the month. We got in a report already because the time difference.
"Ganesha Homa started at 9:30. Final Arati was at 11:00. Clear blue sky. Some four thousand devotees of Lord Ganesha attended the Ganesha Homa today. (Not bad. Imagine hosting four thousand people. Oh! How do they do it?). Thousands of the nicest roses and other flowers, garlands, considerable sweets and fruits were offered to Lord Panchamuka Ganapathi by the public. Talk was from Chapter 27 of Living With Siva on "Positive Discipline." The public was invited to get a copy of the booklet on Positive Discipline. The merits and excellence of Hinduism Today were explained. The Mini Mela sold more than 600 booklets of the French version of Parenting with Love. (Six hundred copies in one morning, that's pretty good.) All of the last issues of Hinduism Today were sold out. Mini Mela has an urgent need for more Hinduism Today. plenty of traffic policemen were present which allowed a smooth flow of vehicles."
So that's a nice aspect of Mauritius is the police will come for the Hindu event and control traffic. They won't do that here. We have to hire a security person. Anyway that sounded very positive. When the weather isn't rainy it helps get more people. Because there's not a covered space for everybody.
So, as I mentioned last phase, in Mauritius the message I was stressing was the use of calm, intelligent communication as the essence of positive discipline approach for raising children and that this also applies to parents handling their disagreements as well. Manon who gives the talk asked for some material on adults. Because we have the children is all in the, what we reprinted, but what do we have regarding adults. So I was looking on the, searching on the web and found a 1991 Publisher's Desk from Gurudeva which relates to parents handling disagreements. So, I thought I'd read that.
"Abuse in the home is a difficult issue, but one we must confront openly. Our page one article and other features begin to define the problem. I urge you all to stand up and say it is no longer acceptable for a man to abuse his wife or children. It must stop.
"In order to heal the differences that arise within a marriage from time to time, both partners have to give in. The best place to do this is at the feet of the Gods in their shrine room. There is often no other solution. This is the only way. The method of 'giving in' is to talk it over. A major emphasis is to see the other's point of view - finding points in the disturbance they can agree with. Agreement is the key word. The relationship between the husband and wife who are also a mother and a father, or potential mother and father, has lasting influence beyond their opposing. Some relationships are easy and some are hard. But here is a good practice for resolving disagreements. (All know what it is.)
"Heal your differences before sleep, even if it takes all night. Don't go to sleep holding on to anger, fear, confusion or ill feelings. By doing this repeatedly, a new habit will be created. The inconvenience of this wisdom (Isn't that a beautiful phrase? The inconvenience, meaning you have to stay up all night. ) The inconvenience of this wisdom will cause each one to be careful of his or her words, thoughts and actions. (Cause the instinctive mind likes to sleep, so, it works.)
"Professional people do not argue long before reconciliation in large corporations, nor do they undermine each other, lest they be looking for another place of employment. Divorce in this modern time is like being dismissed, fired, and then the search is on for another partner with whom the same unresolved karmas will finally mature.
"To build solid marriages, some Hindu institutions provide a weekly family home evening for fellowship and discussion. For young couples just starting a marriage, it can be helpful to write down mutual ideals and expectations in a three-part marriage contract written by the couple themselves before the wedding. Part one defines the overall purpose of the marriage and the aspirations and goals that the union intends to fulfill. Parts two and three are a statement of duties and responsibilities by each of the partners. This semi-corporate approach has proven successful in stabilizing many marriages, as each one clearly understands his or her role. Like a ship's chart, this more detailed vow can be referred to if the relationship gets off course.
"Marriage reconciliation occurs annually in December, during the holy time of Pancha Ganapati. The couple takes out their marriage agreement and together they study where they have been lax or derelict. They trace back in their minds to incidents that are still vibrating as negative samskaras, and apologize humbly and seek forgiveness and resolution. They renew their commitment to each other.
"This is a wonderful key for setting the tone for the coming year - of harmony and peace, which leads to abundance and happiness. We call this anahatha yoga, cleansing the heart chakra, bringing up that true love for one another. It is the process of bringing up all those things that were not settled before going to sleep, to retrieve those seeds before they get plowed under again and produce another crop of sorrow in the coming years. (In other words we only remember something for so long and then we forget it. So if we clear everything up every year we haven't forgotten something before we cleared it up. But, if we wait two, three, four years we may have forgotten it. Well, we're putting something in the subconscious without realizing it.) Bring up little things that each one said or did that hurt the other and were not resolved. Bring up anger that occurred, any physical violence, which should never be, but may have been. Make promises and new-year resolutions to set the course of the future on the path of dharma, which is based on ahimsa."
Nothing out of date in that is there? Fifteen years old but still applies.
Gurudeva, on many occasions gave this advice to newly married couples. They would come and ask, you know: "What Gurudeva, would you suggest?" And he'd always go through this point and I do the same thing; and it works out something like this. You have a young couple there, big eyed, recently married, full of hope and expectation and naive as to, you know, what the reality is, what marriage is. And they ask this: "Swami, do you have any advice for us?" There it is, that's the question. And it happens regularly, same words. And so, I always give Gurudeva's response and goes something like this.
It is natural for husband and wife to disagree --it's not realistic to say we should never disagree. You know, just being a man and being a woman we have two different ways of looking at things and there's bound to be disagreement but what we can do is resolve the disagreement. That's where we have choice. And Gurudeva's wisdom is to always resolve disagreements before going to sleep. After I say that we give them the shawl, take the photo. Dozens of TAKA photos with that scenario.
So I was mentioning that in Mauritius at one of the satsangs and it was at Sivakumar and Kavita's house so they started smiling when I said that and chatting back and forth a little bit because they were in the back of the room. And afterwards they explained to me was that the shawl I was sitting on at the moment was the one Gurudeva had given them eighteen years ago and said those very words. So it was really sweet and so was the continuity here.
So, we have another suggestion as to handling disagreements that I found in the Master Course, has to do with actinic and odic force.
"When we are in actinic force and we are aware of it, we have harmony, we have peace in all of our external life. Everything goes right and everyone sees eye to eye and finds points of agreement, one with another. There's no argument, and there's no confusion. However, when we become conscious in and awareness is flowing through the odic force realms, awareness actually thinks it is odic force. Then we have inharmonious conditions to live in. No one sees eye to eye, one with another. There's argument, and there is contention.
Actinic, for anyone who doesn't recall, means the pure spiritual energies or superconscious energies. Odic is the conscious and subconscious energies. So, we can get into actinic energy through religious practice such as attending or performing puja or performing meditation and put us into actinic energy. So likewise, if there is, if we are sensing we're out of harmony with someone and there's a problem, one way to adjust is to simply adjust where our awareness is flowing. Another way of doing it. We just get our awareness out of being externalized, get it internalized through religious practice and then we can find a point of agreement.
So the Publisher's Desk was on advice for married couples. Gurudeva also gives advice for monastics. There's a short statement in the vows, in the vow of obedience. It says: "The monastic must always seek agreement and a merging of minds with his fellow monastics, never supporting or sustaining contention or disagreement, or stubbornly clinging to an opposite point of view."
And there's a longer version for monks in Merging with Siva, it says: "Having stepped out of his ego shell, the sannyasin is a free soul. Nothing binds him. Nothing claims him. Nothing involves him. Without exclusive territory, without limiting relationships, he is free to be himself totally. If he has problems within himself, he keeps them silently within and works them out there. If he speaks, it is only to say what is true, kind, helpful or necessary. He never argues, debates, complains. His words and his life always affirm, never negate. (That's leading up to the next point here.) He finds points of agreement, forsaking contention and difference. No man is his enemy. No man is his friend. All men are his teachers. Some teach him what to do; others teach him what not to do. He has no one to rely upon except God, Gods, guru and the power within his own spine. He is strong, yet gentle. He is aloof, yet present. He is enlightened, yet ordinary. He teaches the basic philosophy of monistic theism, or non dual Reality. He speaks wisely of the Vedic scriptures and ancient shastras and lives them in his own example. Yet, he consciously remains inconspicuous, transparent."
That's a good one.
One last thought. Have you noticed on TAKA the quote changes every time you access it. So you can access it now and come back in two minutes and there's a different quote? Have you ever wondered: Is that quote just for me? Am I the only one who got that quote? But it's random where it goes and gets it. So this is the one I ran into yesterday. It relates to everything we're talking about.
"Harmony is the first and foremost rule of all living in all spheres, but particularly in spiritual work, where it is an absolute must."
Thank you very much.
[End of transcript.]