While in Montréal, Québec the only individual I initially knew out here introduced me to the Brahma Kumaris Centre; a World Spiritual University teaching Raja Yoga Meditation. On Friday, February 5, 2016 I completed level one of the four level courses.
Since 2010 I’ve been on and off with my meditation practice and after an afternoon brunch with my friend, we walked pass this centre on our way home. Upon seeing the centre she immediately stopped and pulled me inside.
Instantly I felt a very calm and peaceful vibe come over me as I entered the building. Moments later, I was all registered for the level one course that was beginning the Friday coming up.
Level one is an introduction to Raja Yoga Meditation and consist of four classes ranging from 1.5 to 2 hours in length, once per week. The centres are organized and maintained by volunteers so tuition to class is free of monetary cost. They do accept donations and offer books and other tools to aid in our learning process.
The greatest cost to a student though is their discipline to devote the time to their practice; this can be as little as 10 to 20 minutes per day. A small price to pay for the benefits achieved through this daily practice. I must admit that with such an irregular schedule & sleeping at one of two locations currently, I’m still inconsistent with my practice. But what is Raja Yoga Meditation and why should we invest our time into it?
Here are my key takeaways from each class of this introduction to Raja Yoga Meditation:
Lesson One ~ Learning To Meditate
- Raja Yoga Meditation is a mental yoga that requires no physical or breathing techniques.
- Raja translate to King or Master; therefore Raja Meditation is the mastery of the mind.
- The first exercise consist of observation of thoughts & the identification of the various types of thought.
There are 4 Characteristics of Thoughts:
- Positive Thoughts
- Necessary (practical/functional) Thoughts
- Wasteful (useless/unnecessary) Thoughts
- Negative Thoughts
Again, besides whatever donations you can offer to a Brahma Kumaris Centre, your time is the only real cost. It is better to meditate for a short amount of time everyday versus long time once in awhile.
NOTE: These are simply my takeaways from the first class. If you desire to learn more or participate in a class where you’ll be taken deeper into this lesson, find a Brahma Kumaris Centre near you.
Lesson Two ~ The Soul
- I Am a soul, a non-physical being that animates this body.
- I Am an extremely powerful point of consciousness, a living being.
Characteristics of the Soul:
- Conscious point of spiritual energy.
- Position can be associated with the pineal gland however it’s distinct from the physical brain. The brain is the computer and the soul is the programmer.
- Experiences & expresses through the physical body (gives life to the body).
- Can neither be created or destroyed unlike the body.
- Original qualities are purity, peace, love, power & bliss.
Raja Yoga Meditation is more than a simple relaxation exercise as it allows the soul to remember it’s true nature and return to it’s original qualities. Therefore we must devote a little time to it each day as it will quickly become a beneficial habit and generously reward us for our efforts.
Basic meditation techniques include:
- Churning is a spiritual exercise in which the mind creates thoughts based on a theme.
- Visualization helps to make the invisible (soul & spiritual universe) “visible”; assisting in making these concepts easier to understand and experience.
NOTE: To deepen your understand of my takeaways from lesson 2, visit a Brahma Kumaris Centre near you.
Lesson Three ~ 3 Faculties of the Soul
Just as the body has arms, legs, fingers and toes with which it operates in the physical world, the soul also possesses similar faculties which allow it to function in the world of thoughts, feelings and memories.
Here are the three faculties of the soul:
- The Mind: Is the faculty which generates ideas. It thinks, imagines and feels and is influenced by various stimuli.
- The Intellect: Is the faculty of understanding, discernment and decision making.
- The Impressions: Sometimes referred to as the subconscious mind. Impressions are the results of all our past experiences and imaginations of the future that are felt as real.
Watch your thoughts
They become your words
Watch your words
They become your actions
Watch your actions
They become your habits
Watch your habits
They become your personality
Watch your personality
They become your destiny
NOTE: To deepen your understanding of my takeaways from lesson three, visit a Brahma Kumaris Centre near you.
Lesson Four ~ The 8 Spiritual Powers
This was a very deep lesson which I imagine bridges the students of An Introduction Into Raja Yoga Meditation into level two of their studies. It is my intention to begin level two in Vancouver, British Columbia starting February 25, 2016. If you’d like to be kept updated please subscribe to my blog.
In this final class of level one we covered the 8 Spiritual Powers. Spiritual power allows one to become a self-sovereign. The feeling one experiences is one of an all-pervasive force made of peace, love and wisdom. It is by maintaining a lot of love that the soul can acquire all these essential powers:
- The Power of Introversion
- The Power to Pack Up
- The Power to Tolerate
- The Power to Adapt
- The Powerf to Discern
- The Power to Make Decisions
- The Power to Face
- The Power to Cooperate
Many of these powers just mentioned have an entirely different meaning to a Raja yogi mind than it does to individuals who identify themselves as their physical body & what society at large preaches.
To get a deep understanding of these 8 Spiritual Powers and to begin to remember the truth about who you really are, I encourage you to find a Brahma Kumaris Centre near you.
As a footnote, Brahma Kumaris Centres: World Spiritual University is not a religion. It is in my opinion that their philosophy are the core teachings of all religions minus all the story-telling and “my religion is better than yours” wars.
I look forward to learning more as level two begins towards the end of February 2016.
Om Shanit = I Am Peace