WELCOME TO TORAH-VEDA

Torah and Veda are two ancient sources of spirituality still vibrant today. Torah is conveyed through the sacred language of Hebrew and Veda is conveyed through the sacred language of Sanskrit. The focus here is on meditation, mysticism, philosophy, psychology and the underlying spirituality that has been incorporated into religions, and not as much on the religions themselves. Your comments and posts are welcome.

Torah-Veda
An Interspiritual Journey
Find Your Inspiration and Follow It



Quote of the Week 353 - Wiping the Mirror Clean


You see the reflection of the sun in clear water. In the mirror of his ‘I-consciousness’ the devotee sees the form of the Primal Energy, Brahman with attributes. But the mirror must be wiped clean. One does not see the right reflection if there is any dirt on the mirror.


As long as a man must see the Sun in the water of his ‘I-consciousness’ and has no other means of seeing It, as long as he has no means of seeing the real Sun except through Its reflection, so long is the reflected sun alone one hundred per cent real to him. As long as the ‘I’ is real, so long is the reflected sun real — one hundred per cent real. That reflected sun is nothing but the Primal Energy.


--Ramakrishna

CURRENT TEACHING SESSIONS

Torah-Veda Meditation, Self-Discovery, and self-Transformation. This series will cover the basics of the theory and practice of meditation grounded in time-honored Himalayan and Kabalistic teachings. It is suitable for beginners with an earnest interest in committing to and furthering their spiritual growth, as well as more experienced meditators who would like a refresher, re-charge, tune-up, or perhaps a different perspective.


Dates: Four successive Saturdays, Oct. 8, 15, 22, 29, 2016


Time: 11 AM to 1 PM


Location: Vedanta Center of Atlanta; 2332 Brockett Road, Tucker, GA 30084; (Corner of Adrian and Brockett, one block from LaVista.)


Cost: Free and open to the public. Donations gladly accepted.


Note: These sessions are cumulative, and there is benefit to taking all or most in the series, but drop-ins are welcome.


Questions: Contact Steve Gold, torahveda@gmail.com or 770-270-8290.


Course outline:


Session 1: The Body. After a general overview, we begin our journey within (from the small self, with a small “s” to the big Self, with a capital “S”), at the level of bodily awareness. What can we do with the body to use it as a vehicle for productive spiritual growth, and not a hindrance? Meditation postures. Lifestyles and approaches conducive to spiritual growth.


Session 2: Breath/Life Force/Prana. What is the nature of our breath and correlation with our life force/prana? Breath/Life Force/Prana as an important link between the body and the mind. Breathing/pranic exercises to assist coordination and calming of the body, breath and mind.


Session 3: Mind and Emotion. What is the mind? What are its various functions? What are emotions? How do mind and emotion interact? What can we do to harness the instrument of the mind and the powerful forces of emotions to aid in our spiritual growth in a constructive, upward spiral, instead of being caught up in a vicious cycle or even downward, destructive spiral?


Session 4: Spirit/Consciousness. How is consciousness distinct from mind? What is its relationship to Spirit? What are the various states of consciousness? How to distinguish between identifying with the small self that prevents our spiritual growth, and the large Self that aids our spiritual growth? Connecting with the still, quiet voice within, the eye of the storm.


About the Instructor: Steven J. Gold, BA Antioch College, Philosophy and Religion; JD Emory Law School, is the founder/director of the cyberspace center, Torah-Veda and the author of Yoga and Judaism, Explorations of a Jewish Yogi (2007), Ivri: The Essence of Hebrew Spirituality (2010), Torah Portion Summaries; With Insights from the Perspective of a Jewish Yogi (2010), and Basic Spiritual Principles (2011). He has been an initiate, student, practitioner and teacher in a Himalayan meditation tradition for over 35 years and a student of Kabala and Hebrew Spirituality for over 20 years. In addition to his ongoing avocation as a meditation teacher, he was a practicing attorney in the Atlanta, GA area for many years, and transitioned into his current vocation of providing professional mediation services.











Thursday, March 21, 2013

Quote of the Week 260 - The Revenge of the Spirit


Perhaps environmental pollution and the painful gap between the rich and the poor do not constitute the major challenges of our civilization. Perhaps the real challenge lies in the way humankind meets the world- that is, in human consciousness. Consciousness is what makes us unique in the history of evolution. But we have yet to embrace fully what it means to be human…

External evolution requires internal evolution. That was the dimension Abraham Maslow added to the basic Freudian needs: our search for meaning. We strive to develop our consciousness to achieve self-actualization…

The time has come for the spirit to escape from institutions, organizations, structures, strictures and systems. The development of the economy, technology and society is bringing human autonomy closer and closer. Modern individuals have infinitely more opportunities to organize their own lives than did those of previous generations We are at the threshold of a revenge of the spirit. This is the top of Maslow’s pyramid; self-realization. Consciousness separates the human being from other living creatures. We are all recognizably unique and our desire is to fulfill that uniqueness. The next phase of evolution is about becoming conscious beings that direct ourselves. That’s the way to happiness vitality intelligence and health.

The vision of the autonomous individual should not be confused with the current culture of individualism. At a higher level of awareness, the autonomous person realizes her independence relies on the respect and tolerance of others. As more and more people find their own way to spiritual development, they realize that every person, every creature, is part o a greater whole. This growing awareness is changing society. Personal development on a large scale – in sharp contrast with the collective mass hysteria of the various religious – adds a new dimension to the evolution.

If the expansion of consciousness is the mark of the future, it will have a profound effect on the way we equip and organize our world. As awareness rises, equality and community become stronger forces at the expense of old-fashioned, overly controlling rules and overly dominant institutions that promote competition. We will see less emphasis on power, more space for self-organization. That will amount to less winning or losing and more spontaneous synergy on the road to a common outcome.
We are discovering that the pollution of the mind gave rise to the pollution of the environment and that ecology is not just about preserving resources and nature but about realizing humanity’s place in the creation of the universe. “Self-realization will make us spontaneously inclined to value and defend the integrity of the world around us,” said Arne Naess, the founder of the deep ecology movement.

Self-direction will transform standardized education systems, as children cease to be asked to parrot what they read in books selected by their teachers and parents but learn to discover, develop and capitalize on their own talents. Self-determination is also crucial for our health. Autonomous individuals are more healthy individuals. And so increased consciousness will dismantle the expensive, rule-bound system of health care…

In the end, what an Indian master once told me accurately describes our mission: “The greatest journey we can make is the journey within. While going nowhere, while staying right here, we can travel an even greater distance inside.” That journey begins with feeling, listening, looking and experiencing, and sometimes by taking a moment in our busy lives to experience our connection with creation, to invite the future in, to discover that happiness is more than matter or property, to learn that health is, first and foremost, an individual, inner experience…

Come, let’s invest in our dreams of a world renewed, trusting that a new era is now supporting our longing. “It is our duty – as men and women – to behave as though limits to our ability do not exist. We are collaborators in the creation of the universe,” said French philosopoher Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. And we should never forget that we are here to trust and realize our dreams. There’s no more fundamental change.

--Excerpts from the article, The Revenge of the Spirit in The Intelligent Optimist magazine (formerly Ode) January/February 2013 edition
by Jurriaan Kamp, editor-in-chief

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