by Shrikrishna Kashyap (Dr. Shyam) and Gayatri

The Self

Jagat is the systematic and orderly movement of our changing universe. We experience this movement with our sensations, but we begin to think there must be something beyond, a mysterious power we haven’t perceived directly but that we infer. Beyond is the Atman, the self of the universe, the law abiding principle that does not change. Atman is timeless, spaceless, with “center everywhere, circumference no where.” Every illusion is rooted in some fact that is Atman.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap

Always taking place are manifestation, duration and absorption, which is the potential or dormant state out of which the universe is born. Purusha is the pure consciousness of the no-thing, which recalls the universe in a mighty vision. The act of creation is the origin of the Christ sacrifice or Krishna consciousness because creation of separate finite things is a self-negation of the eternal. Pure consciousness is without content, no single though or thing is distinguished from the primal unity. There is no division in consciousness, only experiencing, only being. With pure consciousness as the ground of being, the universe is an outflowing of beauty, love and joy.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap
The Physical Body

The body is the instrument of the soul. The soul expresses its consciousness through the body. We must know the body to control it. If we know the body objectively, without identifying with it, and are not under the domination of habits, then the body is transformed into a pure instrument. Pampering and torturing the body are both the result of misunderstanding. The practice of a total body-mind discipline makes the body ready to receive higher vibrations. Like a musical instrument, it becomes an agency for expression. To what tension the body is subject determines what note it sings. The body is the only instrument which brings realization of the divine. A master’s whole body sings the name of God.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap

The purpose of bodily existence is to
express and reflect perfectly the Immanent Spirit.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap & Gayatri

The “I am that I am” is that which links that which is above to that which is below. It is the immanent Spirit present in manifest existence, that which is below, and non-manifest existence, that which is above, the transcendental spiritual plane. All emanations of Spirit are sacred.
Feeling and Desire

When our attention travels from the periphery of consciousness toward the center, we must pass through the vital energy world of feelings and desires. To understand ourselves, we must understand the topography of the feeling realm of the psyche. Desires convert sensations into pleasurable or painful feelings, but it is possible to have sensations in the mind without converting them to pleasure or pain. The early developmental force behind action is desire. Later it becomes will. Yoga purifies desires so that they accord with the Will of the Self. Our resistance to the Self is due to desire and the attraction of objects. At some point, the desire for God-realization becomes so intense that the individual self merges with our True Self.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap & Gayatri

We cannot control emotions or desires through repression. They follow the law of the conservation of energy, which cannot be destroyed, but can only change form. When we look inward, we confront many undesirable aspects of the psyche, as a water hose brought to the ground will bring up dirt. Control of the emotions follows a course: reconnection to the Source (Self), allowing free play unless emotions are too destructive, observing the emotions in action, followed by reflection and understanding. These subsidiary activities of consciousness do not need to disrupt daily life. Understanding with the heart and mind will convert this energy to different purposes, channeling the energy toward devotion to God, obtaining mastery over attractions, remaining aloof.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap & Gayatri
The Ego

The ego is a center of continuity, a constellation of memory which binds experiences into an idiosyncratic bundle of composite cluster labeled “me.” David Spangler calls this veil of the self the “evolutionary laboratory in which we experience the attributes of divinity on a small scale. It is the microscopic universe where we can play at being god(s) and learn what the responsibilities and the freedoms and joys of godhood are like.” Self identification is a criticial first stage of growth. Then comes the realization that this separation is a hindrance to happiness. We turn inward, detach from identifications, and slowly dissolve the veil, finding unity.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap & Gayatri
The Mind

There are three main characteristics of mind:
it is the separative principle which makes the One into the many;
it is the creator of illusions which oblique the picture of reality, and
it creates the center of egoism which makes us feel we are individuals in seeming conflict with others. The lower mind concretizes thought. It is associated with personality. The higher mind abstracts thought. It is associated with individuality, the permanent monad that endures and partially expresses through the personality. Hindus call this the Jivatma, the spiritual soul. The total constitution of man consists of the transient personality and the spiritually enduring soul in incarnation.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap.
Why Character?

Desire and thought develop in parallel ways. Ultimately, we cannot distinguish between them. Desire generates energy so powerful that it overpowers the thinking process of the concrete mind and forces it to produce schemes and designs for satisfaction. The lower mind becomes a slave to desires, but as it develops strength it begins to ask “why am I a slave?” This is how the understanding begins. The lower mind comes into accord with the higher mind and gathers strength from the spiritual centers. The lower mind is the meeting ground of the higher and lower selves.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap

Character practices enable us to stop the emotions that disturb the mind. We become witnesses to our thoughts. They are the foundation of courage. Non- violence means not being destructive, not holding grudges as far as possible. Truthfulness means avoiding tendencies that distort the truth. We must watch ourselves carefully in thought and deed. This keeps us free from falsehood. Non- appropriation of things that do not belong to us rightfully is to live the truth. Moderation in sensual things leads to the control of passion and therefore leads to self-reliance. Non-possessiveness and not coveting keeps our life from becoming a junkyard of the unnecessary accumulation and protection of worldly things.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap

Surrender to God is self-surrender born of intense faith, devotion and love. By relinquishing the preferences of the ego to the Will of the Divine Self, our “eye is single” and our whole self is ready to receive the descent of superconsciousness, to be “full of light.” Self-surrender is the highest manifestation of character, for through surrender we emulate the Christ sacrifice. As there is love in the birth of manifest creation, so we return love to the Creator. In self-surrender, we merge with love, and dissolve the division between the Created and the Creator.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap & Gayatri
From Enslavement to Freedom

At some point, we grow weary of our enslavement to desires and identification. The ego itself begins to revolt against the constant demands and energy drains of the physical, emotional and mental realms. This revolt comes about through the natural development of the mind. The mind consciously, with awareness, begins to search for a way out of this exclusive involvement with the lower functions of being. At first, out of self-interest, we embark on a path of surrender to the Divine, our perceived bridge away from misery. By a growing surrender, we allow our consciousness to be guided more and more by our higher nature.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap & Gayatri

Thought produces chemical changes in the body. When the mind works as matter, it is a slave to the endocrine system its thousands of chemicals. When the mind empties of content, it becomes pure energy, otherwise it acts as matter and is subject to the laws of matter. When the pure energy flows through all the cells, it creates order in body and mind, leading to health. Observing our thoughts leads to not having thoughts. This is the process of meditation that transcends ordinary consciousness to pure awareness. Meditation empties the mind of content and frees it from the chains of matter.
–Shrikrishna Kashyap