Friday, August 26, 2016

Quote of the Week 354 - Mind and Soul

A [productive] quality is the ability to make mistakes without condemning yourself! Determine that no matter what happens, no matter how many times you stumble, it does not matter. If you have not crawled, you cannot walk; if you have not stumbled, you cannot stand…So do not be afraid of stumbling. You will stumble many times in life. You will commit many mistakes. Don’t create a complex in your heart and mind by thinking that you are nothing. Don’t start condemning yourself, and suffering. Stumbling and committing mistakes are not sins. On the path of wisdom, there is no such thing as sin.

A sin is any act that affects your mind in a negative way. Then, if you remain in a state of negativity for some time, you become passive and helpless. A passive mind is very dangerous. A negative mind can be improved; but a passive mind leads to sickness…

Never identify yourself with negativity, with a passive mood or with weakness. You are not that. You have many weaknesses, yet you, yourself, are not weak. You commit many mistakes, yet you are not weak. You have committed many so-called sins, yet you are not a sinner…

When you commit mistakes, the real repentance is in not repeating them. If you are helpless, practice. If you stumble, practice again. Help will come to you; grace will be there. Do not give up with your human endeavors! Whether you consciously or unconsciously commit a mistake, just do not do it again, but do not believe in sin.

Usually…you care only for trivial or mundane thins of the external world. Your eyes flow with tears for petty things but your heart should cry for something higher. If you constantly cry for worldly things, your body will become ill, but if you cry for God, you will move toward Samadhi, ecstasy. At present, you have great zeal to attain worldly things – you have too much feeling for the things of the world.   

Your main problem is that you are hung up on the things of the world: you are afraid you will not gain what you want, and you are always afraid of losing what you have. You have never worked with the totality of your mind. This anxiety is all the result of your mind, because nothing happens to the body, and nothing happens to God. Whatever happens, it occurs only in your mind. The Upanishads say that atman is the fastest entity, and yet at the same time, that it has no movement. Teachers often say that the mind is the fastest, faster even than sound or light. But there is one thing faster than the mind – your individual soul, the atman. It is the fastest because wherever the mind travels, the soul is already there, no matter where the mind goes. So if there is anything that can correct and help your mind, it is not worldly wealth or objects, it is nothing external, but only that which is the innermost center of your being.

Do not concern yourself with the rewards of meditation. There is a scientific law that every action has a reaction: it is not possible for an action to not have benefits. Even if you do not see conscious benefits, there are unconscious benefits. At the very least, you will develop muscle relaxation, rid yourself of tension and stress, and learn to use the mind for spirituality.

--Swami Rama, Path of Fire and Light, Volume II

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Quote of the Week 381 - Heaven

Heaven is all round,

Translated to sound.

--Michael Hedges



Announcing Publication of New Book, DIMENSIONS: Navigation the Spiritual Spectrum

I am pleased to announce the publication of my new book, DIMENSIONS: Navigating the Spiritual Spectrum, now available at Amazon, in paperback print and Kindle versions. It is easily found by searching my name, or by searching the full title and subtitle. You can also click on the image of the book in the right hand column of this blog.

What a great way to start the New Year, cozying up to a fire, real or imagined, and reading a new spiritually inspiring book, sure to become a classic!

DIMENSIONS: Navigating the Spiritual Spectrum

Grounded in the traditions of Torah and Veda, Steven J. Gold takes us on an oceanic tour of the depth and breadth of spiritual consciousness. Sharing personal stories and insights into various traditional scriptures as examples, he urges us to adopt a spiritual worldview, to “ponder infinity, awake and arise,” to “find your inspiration and follow it.”

“The chapters…are records of what happens when Steve’s right mind, and heart, are given full freedom to wander where they wish. As discoveries and correlations are made, his well-trained left mind and sharp wit give his observations shape and form…” – Brother Shankara, Resident Minister, Vedanta Center of Atlanta

“Universal Ice Cream: Dive deep into Steve’s wonderful book to help find your favorite flavor on the Spiritual Spectrum.” – Rabbi Mitch Cohen, Spiritual Leader, Congregation Shalom B’Harim, Dahlonega, GA

“Steven J. Gold’s Dimensions is an exploration of spirituality from the inside out. If you are looking for a guide through the pathless land of truth, read this book.” – Rabbi Rami Shapiro, author of The World Wisdom Bible

Interfaith/Inter-Spiritual Contemplative Groups

Please check out the following, which is an ongoing activity that may be of interest: