-- Sri M. Radhakrishna Murthy
1. The observation of Shri Ramchandraji Maharaj, our Babuji, from a message of His requires careful study to know why men should develop the courage of a lion and how Natural Path attempts to make such men and what the reality is.
2. The practicants of this system of yoga are well versed with the methods adopted. It is incumbent on us to acquaint the readers with the system at least in outline as the intricacies in working of the system needs a thorough and deep study with awesome literature available on the subject to know the working in a more detailed way. A humble attempt, however, is made in this direction to present it briefly.
3. Natural Path (name implying natural path) is quite a natural path of remodeled and improvised system of Rajayoga expounded by Samarthasadguru Shri Ramachandraji Maharaj of Fategarh U.P.(India), based on His personal direct and practical experience in Rajayoga. Running on purely spiritual lines, bereft of any superfluity it involves practice adjustable easily to normal gruhasta life of present days offering a shortcut to realization.
His life marks a new era of spiritual training. He brought to light of the day the long forgotten system of Pranahuti or Yogic transmission which forms the very basis of the system followed in the mission founded in 1945 after Him by his successor and representative, His Holiness Mahatma Shri Ramchandraji Maharaj (affectionately called as Babuji) of Shahjahanpur U.P. as Shri Ramchandra Mission. He is Adi Guru of our Mission.
4. The system involves simple and natural process of meditation under the guidance of a true Master. There are no rituals and ceremonials. There are Ten Commandments to be followed. It is quite plain and simple. It is to be experienced by anyone who likes to do so. It is quite natural and efficient that even degraded of the human beings has a chance of setting aside his polluted coverings and advance on the path of freedom. Spiritual regeneration of mankind without any distinction of race, nationality and religion offers a true solution in spiritual awakening of humans. The present morass, upheaval, unrest, misery, distrust and host of other afflictions pestering the human race is due to close adherence to gross materiality which is the root-evil. If it somehow ends that makes the end of all problems. It can be the only spiritual ways of living in constant Divine remembrance that can offer a lasting solution. Spirituality is really our march from the present plane of gross existence to higher and higher planes of subtleness up to the farther possible extent. To achieve that last state of unchanging subtleness and to abide in it permanently is the final aim of the natural path.
5. A glimpse at the working of Pranahuti reveals that the Divine impulses introduced into the heart of the Abhyasi at the time of introduction works gradually in inner awakening of Divinity raising the consciousness to higher levels turning the tendencies of the mind towards Divinity resulting in comparative calm and peace as a first step. The impulses imparted gradually works in deeper layers of inner finer consciousness not touching the conscious mind. That is why no visible effect is noticed in the beginning of sadhana by some. Impressions embedded in deeper layers come for bhog. Effect of impulses begin to expand over the astral mind and then to the conscious mind which gets moulded gradually. At grosser levels, the Abhyasi begins to feel subtle changes in his inner tendencies. This effect is Centrifugal (i.e., from centre to circumference) causing permanent effect and is brought about without physical labour or mental strain in a natural way. By constant practice the conscious mind gets merged in higher consciousness. This is the beginning of ‘Viveka’ – capacity to distinguish real from the unreal. Gradually one begins to lose charm in the worldly objects in a natural way deeply routed in reality ushering in Vairagya in a most natural way. Due attachment to the worldly affairs turns their attendance as a Divine duty being accomplished as a part of ordained duty. Desirelessness results gradually, formation of samskaras gets slowed down and stop finally. The cycle of birth and death ends while the journey is still too long to reach and realize the ultimate. It should be noted that all this process is a result of continuous and assiduous practice without any laxity by the Abhyasi as directed by the Master. The cleaning process along with meditation should be a part of life to get rid off day-to-day accumulation of samskaras and to get Divine help respectively.
6. Lakhs of births have gone by. We have been accumulating samskaras in each birth with no prospect of their arresting further accumulation leaving alone liquidation of those whose stock has been continuously piling up. The opportunity once gained in life due to God’s Grace may have to be utilized to maximum for finding a way out to get rid off this cycle of birth and death initially with the final aim of mergence in the ultimate. Load-shedding should be our primary concern for which regular practices advised must be followed; moulding of personal character in each step of daily routine with no let-up in attaining perfection to the extent possible; attending to worldly duties as trusteeship dedicating the result to God; developing love and devotion to God, finally surrendering to the creator without any knowledge of the act of surrender are a few important elements to be taken special notice of. Even then there is no surety of emancipation except with His Grace who knows when an individual will be bestowed with it. Perhaps, keeping in view of these difficulties Babuji Maharaj would have observed that Lion Hearted Men alone can dare approach reality. He further observed that reality is not a field for cowards.
7. Lion Heart symbolizes courage as a Lion preys upon an elephant (an animal of huge size of massive body) with strong determination and courage and at times employing tricks (instead of attempting a frontal attack) Similarly, to tame and to get to control of rather regulate an unsteady wavery and flirting mind which is a formidable task, perseverance coupled with strong determination is a must. Besides, confidence in ones’ own self, continuous and constant effort, firm conviction on ones’ own belief, identification and fixation of goal, determination to reach it not minding failures on the path are some of the essentials needed to undertake the practice. Above all selecting a correct guide, fixing firm and abiding faith in him is most needed in this most difficult venture of realizing the goal.
8. Babuji delivered several messages on important festive occasions and at the inaugural ceremonies of Ashram branches all over the country and abroad. Various aspects of sadhana formed part of these messages. As the topic of the seminar is concerned with two main ingredients of sadhana (reality and Natural Path) observation of Babuji Maharaj on these two aspects are dealt with briefly in the following paragraphs which may be of interest to readers.
i) Dissolution of our tiny creation forming our material existence comprising of layers after layers of grossness and opacity so as to assume the absolute state at the time of creation which we had is the gist of Natural Path. (SDG140).
ii) Babuji in His message “Efficacy of Rajayoga” summarizes the core elements of Natural Path sadhana as though he is answering the question as to for what Natural Path stands ;
He observes that finiteness which we represent limits our vision of Absolute Reality, requiring our awakening to a higher type of consciousness of infinite character. Our resourcefulness and thinking acts as a bar. The same thought force in man is to be utilized touching the inner core of our heart creating intense restless which causes Master’s help to come. Abhyasi should keep full trust in Master, co-operate with Him which helps transforming the waking consciousness to higher stages gradually resulting in the dawn of the idea of the freedom. It is to be forgotten to get into a state of complete oblivion when Master induces people to forget themselves. Self –surrender is the key to bring Abhyasi to the highest level of consciousness. (SDG 95-102)
iii) The main basis of training in Natural Path is Pranahuti– which is unique to the system. Transmission gives a new life to the sleeping condition of man and prepares for the highest approach reserved for human beings (SDG 104 & 109).
iv) To the attainment of the Highest the teachings are to be of the highest order. The natural path provides the same. (SDG130)
v) God being simple and extremely subtle requires only subtle means for realization. Natural path teaches us to grow subtle from the beginning .Our thinking of duty as worship brings us to a subtler state (SDG 140, 144).
vi) Natural path is for integration. The ideal of the mission is to serve which is better than being served- Paris declaration. (SDG 165).
vii) Stating that spirituality is not the monopoly of Indians alone, Babuji wishes our associates in different parts of the world not looking to us for their spiritual benefit but should have due share in spirituality. In this context he says that he does not make disciples but Masters. (SDG 158).
viii) The natural path’s main purpose is to install spirituality in place of prevailing non-spirituality. To achieve this aim, members should work with love, patience and co-operation. Babuji expresses His opinion that the organization needs men who may shine out like the sun attracting people when they are aware that our method is correct. He observes in that context that one lion is better than a hundred sheep. But as humans we should do spiritual good to others (SDG 164).
ix) In the sphere of spirituality, character development has a special place, the importance of which is in no way less than that of spiritual welfare itself. Commandment 9 insists on the moulding of the character which needs no special emphasis. (SDG 175).
x) Grossness acts as an impediment to the Divine grace inhibiting approaches to higher states of consciousness impossible. The beauty of natural path is that it clears the grossness for His Grace to descend (SDG 115).
i) Babuji suggests an easiest way to God realization; to render the heart as a gift to Divine Master which should be an act of will. The lighter and the finer the will the more effective shall be its working. This will result in the state of absorbency in the infinite reality. A courageous start is needed which brings in an attitude of renunciation from the very first day (SDG 138).
ii) For the attainment of absolute, linking oneself closely with one – ultimate reality turning attention with full sincerity of heart is essential surrendering oneself to the great Master in the true sense (SDG 139 & 140).
iii) The surrender must be developed without least strain or pressure upon the mind when you will be in close touch with reality all the time resulting in flow of Divine Effulgence continuously (SDG 141).
iv) Grosser methods of worship results in self-satisfaction, which most people not acquainted with spirituality, assume it to be peace. But peace is related to soul. Advancement in spirituality leads to non-peace peace. As humans we are bound in finiteness; for advancement in spirituality we should begin from Infinity in finiteness establishing relationship with the Real Being. As the finiteness gradually gets washed away, we begin getting absorbed in Infinite. We proceed on in the Infinite and to the Infinite with the result that the idea of Infinite cannot pop up. Now the Reality dawns. “when we jumped into Reality the play ends and the scene begins. But this is not the end. Go on and on. Not only this, not only this – “Neti Neti” . (SDG 116).
v) Babuji, in a message explains the difference between the anomalous situation of an Abhyasi not experiencing anything sometimes after meditation and having no experience at all in some stage; the former condition is due to the egoism, in the initial stages identified (harmonized) with physical(bodily)and materialistic desire stands incapable of recognizing the experiences of superior most stage and the speed of self forgetting on stepping forward on higher stages starts obliterating the possibility of the value (importance) and admissibility of the experiencing of (sensitivity to ) pain and comfort(happiness or otherwise)of the lower and cruder existence. Making an oceanic difference with this experience in the initial stages of abhyas, in the superior-most state of perfect balance, whereas narration and comprehension having become suspended, there does happen plenty of experience so much so that no desire for anything in exchange for it remains. However, experience and its description becomes meaningless there which state has been fixed under the term “Indescribable” (Anirvachaniya) in the Upanishads, expressed by Lord Buddha through silence and Sufism and Sant Kabeer have felt contended to speak of as “IT is just what IT is”. Babuji further observes simplicity in our system of sadhana has virtually became its veil, shrouding the truth of sensitivity to be experienced only in higher stages of experience is capable of being felt only after advancement with sincere practice life long along with the Divine Grace flowing into the sadhaka at the appropriate time.
Babuji clearly explains the situation by citing examples of the stages of experience by taking instances of thorn prick of animals and of human beings at physical levels undoubtedly experienced at grosser level; instance of a scientist forgetting his lunch engrossed in work representing both physical and intellectual levels; the same scientist turning philosophical and also spiritual while experiencing the state of perfect calmness when his effort of two decades of scientific research having been reduced to a heap of ash by his pet dog upturning the table lamp , patting it with utmost serenity. It is indeed a fortunate few that can really experience the state of NOTHINGNESS which has to be considered really a great achievement in life. (SDG 167 to 174).
VI. In another message Babuji exhorts an Abhyasi to cultivate intense craving amounting to restlessness, eagerness or pinching impatience for realization of the goal which ensures easy success. The actual state of real peace, Babuji observes, is beyond comprehension. A firm will and an undivided attention towards it are all required for the purpose. Then what you seek for will be found close to you. In the words of Babuji “Nay! You might yourself be that which you seek for. For that there must be burning heart which might burn down the weeds and bushes on the path (our thoughts). (SDG 94). As explained under (i) of Natural Path the crux lies in our dissolving ourselves (thoughts of our own making ultimately representing our material existence) that this most subtlest state of experience, may, perhaps be gained. All His Grace!!
9 The above references are of the nature of illustrations only but not at all exhaustive.
10. May all of us prove to be worthy practicants on a Natural Path and stand to the expectations of the great Master Shri Ramchandra Maharaj.