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SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8A PRESENTATION BY UPASANA HINDU DHARMOTTHAN SANSTHAN (Upasana Society For Hindu Resurgence )TOPICS OF MAIN ARTICLES: 1. Suvachan (Words of wisdom) 2. Basic principles of spiritual practice 3. Practical guidance on implementation of spirituality 4. Anubhutis (spiritual experiences) of seekers 5. Clarification of doubts 6. Spiritual healing vis-a-vis negative energies 7. Efforts made by seekers for spiritual progress 8. Guru Poornima special 9. Activites of Upasana 10. Why is it so in Vedic Sanatan Dharma?

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SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8Weekly newsletter for sincere Spiritual SeekersEmail: [email protected] | www.vedicupasana.com Blog www.tanujathakur.com

SOHAM

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A PRESENTATION BY UPASANA HINDU DHARMOTTHAN SANSTHAN(Upasana Society For Hindu Resurgence ) TOPICS OF MAIN ARTICLES: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Suvachan (Words of wisdom) Basic principles of spiritual practice Practical guidance on implementation of spirituality Anubhutis (spiritual experiences) of seekers Clarification of doubts Spiritual healing vis-a-vis negative energies Efforts made by seekers for spiritual progress Guru Poornima special Activites of Upasana

10. Why is it so in Vedic Sanatan Dharma?

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SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8

1. Suvachan (Words of Wisdom) a. Shree Guru Uvaach (Quote from the Master): Real education is that which guides us towards achieving unison with God. Various streams of modern science and education take us closer to Maya (illusion) and are means to possess mere luxuries and comforts. Since these drive us away and alienate us from God, their significance in our life is zero. - His Holiness Dr. Jayant Balaji Athavale

His Holiness Dr. Jayant Balaji Athavale

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SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8

Implied meaning: The definition of vidya(real knowledge) is, , Sa Vidya Ya Muktaye, meaning it guides us to the path where we can attain God. Modern science and the existing education system dont have an iota on this subject. Therefore, a person is able to possess and get material comforts, but unable to experience the intangible bliss and make spiritual progress, one of the foremost objectives of human birth. Hence, it has zero value. Today, despite an abundance of material comforts, several afflictions are increasing, there is decrease in values both at the individual and social level. A situation of chaos now exists around us. Remember that our Vasundhara (Mother Earth) is not a Bhog Bhoomi (land for mirth), but Sadhana Bhoomi (land for spiritual practice). But modern science and secular education have converted it into a Bhog Bhoomi. Thus, rather than education, everyone will have to engage in Vidya-Arjan (gaining knowledge about self realisaton) once again.

(b) Quotations from Shaastras (scriptures): -

naahaaraM chintayet praaj~no dharmamekaM hi chintayet aahaaro hi manuShyaaNaaM janmanaa saha jaayate - Chaanakya NIti Meaning: The wise do not think about food, but reflect on Dharma alone, (For) food for beings is born along with them!

(c) Dharma Dhaara3

SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8

In the present times, seekers who worship the warrior form of Lord Krushna(the Sudarshan Chakra-wielding form) are required instead of the devotees adoring the saviour form ie. the flute-playing character of Bhagwan Shri Krushna for the sake of nation building and resurgence of Hindu Dharma - Tanuja Thakur (d) Essence of gita :

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(: ) vasaansI jeernaa~nI yathaa vihaay navaa~nI gruhyaa~tI naro~paraa~nI tathaa shareeranI sanyaa~tI navaanI dehee - Shrimad Bhagwad Gita (2.22)

Meaning: Just as a person discard worn out clothes and wears new clothes, in the same way Jivatma (subtle soul) gives up an old body and acquires new bodies. Implied meaning: The human body is mortal and the soul is eternal and immortal. The reality is when the mortal old body which is not capable of performing the Sadhana (spiritual practice) perishes, its a kind of a divine blessing and being born again in a new body (with new clothes) is an excellent medium to do Sadhana. Just as we naturally discard old clothes without any attachment towards them, similarly it is not appropriate to mourn anyones demise. Thus, Dnyani (wise ones) do not mourn death, for the soul in the body is immortal and till the time the dissolution of mind, intellect, desires and ego doesnt happen , it has to remain trapped in the vicious cycle of life and death. To attain liberation from this cycle, performing Sadhana (spiritual practice) is a must.4

SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8

2. Basic principles of spiritual practice :The correct pronunciation of Vedas and Mantras is essential as the incorrect pronunciation can cause serious troubles for us. But Naamjap (chanting of Gods name) can be done in any manner. Why is it so? Paninis grammar says:

anaksharaM hatayushyaM viswaraM vyaadhipeeditaM akshataa shastrashrupen vajraM patati mastake It means incorrect pronunciation of consonants destroys age and faulty pronunciation of vowels causes diseases. If the Akshat (unbroken rice ) is energised with faulty pronunciation of mantras and offered on someones head, it falls as a thunderbolt. However, in the context of Naamjap, it has been mentioned in a scripture titled Panchratragam thus: |

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murkho vadati vishnaaya buddho vadati vishnave naM ityeva arthaM cha dwayorapi samaM phalaM It means that through an ignorant fool wrongly pronounces the Lords name as Vishnaaya Namah instead of the correct Vishnave Namah as pronounced by the literate Seeker, yet both get the same result as the motive of both is to venerate.5

SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8

That is why there is a saying Ram naam tedho bhala, meaning Lords name can give bliss even if it is pronounced in an incorrect manner. I will narrate a spiritual experience in this context. It was October 1999. I used to conduct weekly Satsang (discourses) in a temple in Bokaro district of Jharkhand. One day, an illiterate woman stopped me when I was going out and in a highly emotional tone, said that about three months ago while cleaning utensils at someones house located next to the temple, she had heard my discourse on chanting. Pointing towards her body, she said, Due to some skin disease, my entire body had almost become rotten, but the chanting prescribed by you cured my disease. Her body still bore faint marks. I felt very happy upon hearing this. I had never met her, and yet she had been chanting. I casually asked her, What have you been chanting? She replied, Guru Deve Datte Namah. Seeing me break into a smile, she asked, Why? Have I made a mistake? I told her, Yes, you are not doing the chanting correctly, and asked her to chant Shree Guru Dev Dutt instead. Then I made her repeat it five times. Blissfully, she corrected her chanting, greeted me and left. I stood there smiling as I recollected the above-mentioned Shloka (Sanskrut couplet). The woman was illiterate. Hence, she could not pick or do the chant correctly, but since her objective was pure and she had faith, she got the desired positive experience. This woman had been troubled by Pitru Dosh (problems due to unsatiated ancestral souls) and had got eczema as a result. By chanting Shree Guru Dev Dutt, ie. Lord Dattatreyas chant, her ancestors got their Gati (onward movement of the embodied soul after life) and her troubles vanished. Although she did not do chanting the correct way, yet through her Bhav (spiritual emotion) she achieved the desired result. Hence, it is said, Neither can sins ruin us, nor can merits alleviate us. Only Bhav (spiritual emotion) can provide us salvation.

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SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8

3.Practical guidance on implementation of spiritualityImportance of Satsang ( holy company) The spiritual progress through the medium of Shravan Bhakti (devotion through hearing) is very slow. If one wants to make rapid spiritual progress, efforts should be made to implement everything taught at the Satsang. Hence, whenever we go for a Satsang, we must take along a pen and pad, so that notes can be made of the topics discussed at the Satsang and implemented in daily life. Spirituality is a science of experience and only when one implements the tenets of spirituality, he/she gets anubhutis. Hence merely listening does not bring about any significant change in life. Spirituality is the knowledge of the infinite and is also a science. Hence, the simplest medium of learning spirituality is attending a Satsang and that too as a student. While going for a Satsang, one must avoid taking children to the satsang if the children are naughty, as it will disturb the concentration of others. Remember that Satsang is the place where education about Dharma is being imparted. Hence, upholding the dignity is the Dharma of every seeker. In a Satsang, the importance of word is merely 2% and what is conveyed beyond words is 98%. The Seekers who have just begun their spiritual journey with spiritual levels of 30-40% must pay attention to the words and also be attentive to the Chaitanya (divine consciousness) that is being created beyond words in the satsang. Those who have progressed in Sadhana (spiritual practice), that is those who have acquired a spiritual level above 60%, must thrive to receive the divine consciousness present there and which is beyond words. If a seeker possesses Bhav, language does not become an obstacle and they experience bliss through divine consciousness which is beyond words. I will narrate an Anubhuti (spiritual experience) of a woman seeker here. In January 2011, I was conducting a three-day Satsang in English at Chennai. An old woman Seeker used to attend the Satsang;but she did not understand English. However, she used to attend the Satsang daily and would sit blissfully. One day, I asked her through another Seeker as to why she attended the Satsang and whether she understood whatever I explained during Satsang.7

SOHAM - Newsletter by Tanuja Thakur - Vol.1 Issue No 8

She told me she did not understand all that I said at the Satsang, but she could perceive (divine glimpse) of the form of Maa Durgaa in